How do we define conscientiousness?

Wikipedia says:

Conscientiousness is the trait of being painstaking and careful, or the quality of acting according to the dictates of one’s conscience.

I am not sure what painstaking really means but it sounds like hard work. Is it really hard work to be conscientious?

I want to share with you someone I know who lacks this trait. She never says excuse me and she will literally push you out of the way to get to the fridge or sink. She doesn’t plan ahead or make decisions that take other people into consideration. You may call her narcissistic. I call her something else. She talks about herself constantly. If you have something important to add to the conversation, you have to wait for her to take a breath, but she will never acknowledge you said anything.

If you lack conscientiousness, you most likely are not an active listener. But does it mean you don’t care about anything around you? I want to know what you think.

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