Advertising
Advertising

If You Know This Experiment, You Might Not Believe In Horoscope Anymore

If You Know This Experiment, You Might Not Believe In Horoscope Anymore

Horoscopes are commonplace these days, not only found in the back pages of the newspaper, but also all across the Internet. Personally, I don’t find myself seeking out my horoscope, but on occasion I do end up stumbling across it and, of course, I read it.

Do I believe it? Do you believe yours? Do you find yourself applying what it says to your personal life, believing that what is says will come true no matter what?

Advertising

Not to burst your bubble, but science thinks that the horoscope is…well, BS.

Is My Horoscope a Generalization?

According to science, you may be likely to accept a generalization (a statement that will feel like a truth to nearly everyone) to be specifically true of yourself. It’s called the “Forer effect,” sometimes known as the “Barnum effect.”

Advertising

In 1948, psychologist Bertram R. Forer gave his students a personality test. Despite their real answers, he gave them all the same fake responses:

  • You have a great need for other people to like and admire you;
  • You have a tendency to be critical of yourself;
  • You have a great deal of unused capacity which you have not turned to your advantage.

The students were asked to respond on a scale of 0 to 5, with 5 meaning that the description was an excellent evaluation of their personality and 0 meaning the description did not describe their personality at all. The average class response was 4.26.

Advertising

What does this prove?

What does this prove? That people are likely to believe vague generalizations about themselves so long as they are generally positive. In fact, studies[1] have shown that people who didn’t originally believe in astrology actually accepted their horoscope and increased their belief in astrology as a whole if the horoscope tended to be generally favorable.

I guess it goes to show that human beings are grasping for cosmic answers to our struggles, even if those answers are generic.

Advertising

Reference

More by this author

Lindsay Mattison

Chef and Cookbook Writer

6 Must-Read Books To Change Your Life In 2017 Checkmate When it’s Hard to Make a Choice, try This Simple Technique Stop Searching For “The One.” He/She Would Never Exist If You Only Focus On What You Can Get 6 Small Things You Can Do To Improve Your Writing Instantly If You Understand These 2 Important Principles Of Love, Your Relationships Will Be Much Better

Trending in Communication

1 How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up 2 Feeling Stuck in Life? How to Never Get Stuck Again 3 Practical Advice for Overcoming Problems in INFP Relationships 4 How to Live up to Your Full Potential and Succeed in Life 5 7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

Advertising

It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

Advertising

3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

Advertising

Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

Advertising

6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

Read Next