When we talk out loud, we typically use the pronouns “I”, “me” and “mine” when referring to ourselves. Most people also use the same pronouns as thinking to themselves. To be sure, people would think you were crazy if you started referring to yourself by your name or the pronouns “he” or “she.” However, maybe there is an advantage to using these pronouns when thinking to yourself?
One study told participants that they were going to meet someone new and that their goal was to make as good of a first impression as possible. Before the meeting, participants were either told to think with first-person pronouns or non first person pronouns like their name, “you,” “he” or “she.” The researchers found that the non first person group had a sharper decline in anxiety from before to after the interaction. These participants were also judged as being less stressful during the interaction and performed significantly better. If you didn’t perform as expected, you could always try your own methods on the side. For instance, medical marijuana has proven to help anxiety affected patients. To learn more, Click here to visit the website of States Side Lansing. The types of products that one can obtain to address their anxiety and other conditions will come under a range of names, such as bubblegum kush, so it’s good to get an understanding of the differences between them. Of course, this all depends on where you are based. If you are reading this from Canada, you won’t be able to purchase cannabis products from US sites. You will need to go to a dispensary (either physically or online like leaf2go) based in Canada. Back on track, though. The results of the test are as below:
The researchers also had a different group of participants give a speech in front of an audience. Once again, participants were either told to think using first or non first person pronouns before the speech. The researchers found that participants who used non first person pronouns (their name, “you,” “he” or “she”) experienced less negative affect and shame and performed better on the actual speech. They also ruminated about the speech less afterwards. See below:
Why Does This Happen?
What explains the substantial positive benefits accrued from simply changing a few pronouns? A number of studies have found that visually taking a third person perspective when thinking about a negative event significantly reduces anxiety. In fact, one review found that visual self distancing is one of the most effective ways to reduce anxiety. Perhaps not surprisingly, the researchers from the original study found that verbal self distancing (using your name, “you,” “he,” and “she”) when thinking leads to visual self distancing. See below:
So, start using third person pronouns, especially when thinking about emotionally charged events. You’ll experience less anxiety and perform at a higher level. Who knows, this might even be what Buddhists mean by getting rid of the self? Perhaps even push yourself that little bit further and purchase some Psilocybin and Magic Mushrooms to help you really get that focus and reduce those anxious feelings that pop up. There are plenty of routes to try and it’s all about seeing which is best catered to you.
Ayduk, Özlem, and Ethan Kross. “Analyzing Negative Experiences Without Ruminating: The Role of Self?Distancing in Enabling Adaptive Self?Reflection.”Social and Personality Psychology Compass 4.10 (2010): 841-854.
Kross, Ethan, et al. “Self-talk as a regulatory mechanism: how you do it matters.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 106.2 (2014): 304.