You Talkin’ To Me? Why Talking To Yourself Is Actually A Good Thing

Who hasn’t been caught talking to themselves? I don’t mean deep, involved conversations but the odd “where did I leave that?!” is quite an everyday thing, right? As my Dad says, it’s when you begin to answer yourself back that you should start getting worried. But it turns out that, incredulously, though we may have been led to believe that nattering away to ourselves is not the healthiest of reflections on your mind, quite the opposite is in fact true.

According to Dr Paloma Mari-Beffa, having a chat with yourself is actually a “sign of higher cognitive function.” In Dr Beffas study, she discovered that reading instructions aloud during a task helps you to perform it better than the people who didn’t talk to themselves during it. She suggests that by talking to yourself, your more likely to respond to those orders than you are to written ones. According to an article on GoodHousekeeping, “that self-talk helps us to organise our thoughts, plan our actions and control our bodies overall.”

Talking aloud to yourself just an extension of the inner stream of consciousness that we all have ongoing all the time, isn’t it? Dr Beffa spoke to Science of Us and explained that it helps us to control ourselves, stemming from when we were a child learning to speak. “When approaching a hot surface, the toddler will typically say “hot, hot” out loud and move away. This kind of behaviour can continue into adulthood,” Dr Beffa says. We don’t know about you, but this makes us feel a whole lot better about our worrying levels of self-chat. At least the next time we catch someone staring at us wide-eyed in concern, we can simply say, “science says I’m smarter than you.”

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