advertisement
23 April 2012

Talking to yourself has mental benefits

People who talk to themselves while searching for specific objects may be able to find them faster, researchers say.

0

People who talk to themselves while searching for specific objects may be able to find them faster, researchers say.

Previous studies have suggested that when children talk to themselves it helps guide their behaviour. For example, kids may talk themselves through tying their shoes to help remember how it's done. The authors of the new study set out to determine if the same was true for adults.

The findings, from Gary Lupyan, of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Daniel Swingley, of the University of Pennsylvania, were published online in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology.

How the study was done

In the experiment, adult participants were shown 20 pictures of different objects and asked to find one of them (for example, a jar of peanut butter on a supermarket shelf, or a stick of butter in the refrigerator). In some tests, they saw only a text label informing them what they had to find.

In other tests, the participants were told to locate the object again. This time, however, they were instructed to say the name of the object to themselves. The study revealed that by talking to themselves, people found the objects more quickly.

In a second experiment, participants completed a virtual shopping task. They were shown pictures of items commonly found on supermarket shelves and asked to identify those items whenever they appeared. Once again, the researchers found that by telling themselves the name of familiar objects the participants often were able to find them faster.

The study authors concluded in their report, however, that "although the present results provide evidence that self-directed speech affects some aspect of the visual search process that is specific to the target category, there is no evidence at present that self-directed speech affected the efficiency of locating the target."

Read more:
Let your body do the talking

More information

Harvard Medical School has more about the human brain and how it works.


(Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.)

This article has not necessarily been edited by Health24.

 
advertisement

Get a quote

advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Live healthier

Strenghten your immunity »

Keep your immunity strong Immune system boosters Boost your family's immunity

5 immune boosters in your kitchen

You don’t need a handful of vitamins and supplements to keep your body healthy, check out these five immune boosting foods you probably already have in your kitchen.

Laugh a little »

Eat yourself happy Laugh more and live longer Laughing yoga the best medicine

The healing power of laughter

A good chuckle doesn't only make you feel happy for a moment, it's beneficial to your health too.