I talk a lot to myself. It helps me to keep my concentration on the activity on hand, makes me focus more on my studies, and gives me some pretty brilliant ideas while chattering to myself; more importantly, I produce better works. For example, right now, as I am typing, I am constantly mumbling to myself. Do you talk to yourself? Don’t get embarrassed admitting it because science has discovered that those who talk to themselves are actually geniuses… and not crazy!

Research Background

Psychologist-researcher Gary Lupyan conducted an experiment where 20 volunteers were shown objects, in a supermarket, and were asked to remember them. Half of them were told to repeat the objects, for example, banana, and the other half remained silent. In the end, the result shown that self-directed speech aided people to find the objects faster, by 50 to 100 milliseconds, compared to the silent ones.

“I’ll often mutter to myself when searching for something in the refrigerator or the supermarket shelves,” said Gary Lupyan. This personal experience actually made him conduct this experiment. Lupyan, together with another psychologist, Daniel Swigley, came up with the outcomes that those to talk to oneself are geniuses. Here are the reasons:

It stimulates your memory

When you are talking to yourself, your sensory mechanism gets activated. It gets easier on your memory since you can visualise the word, and you can act accordingly.

It helps stay focused

When you are saying it loud, you stay focused on your task, and it helps you recognise that stuff immediately. Of course, this only helps if you know what the object you are searching looks like. For example, a banana is yellow in colour, and you know how a banana looks like. So when you are saying it loud, your brain immediately pictures the image on your mind. But if you don’t know what banana looks like, then there is no effect of saying it loud.

It helps you clarify your thoughts

Every one of us tends to have various types of thoughts. Most make sense, while the others don’t. Suppose you are furious at someone and you feel like killing that person. Now for this issue you won’t run to a therapist, will you? No, what you do is lock yourself in a room and mutter to yourself. You are letting go off the anger by talking to yourself, the pros and cons of killing that person, and eventually you calm down. This is a silly thought that you have and are unable to share it with any other person. Psychologist Linda Sapadin said, “It helps you clarify your thoughts, tend to what’s important and firm up any decisions you are contemplating.”

Featured photo credit: Girl Using Laptop In Hotel Room/Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

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