Worried that you happen to speak alone, rather often than seldom, whether you live with someone or not? Do you also regularly think out loud, on the street, at home or at the office, walking the corridor that leads to the coffee machine?
Why it’s good to speak to yourself, benefits and explanations.
At first glance, nobody occupies a hemisphere of your brain, but this doesn’t mean that you are sinking into madness. Even more, your neurons are working pretty well.
Search your surroundings and you will understand the extent of the phenomenon. “It is quite rare not to do this. Those who do not rottenly speak to themselves on loud voice have very inhibited personalities, and speak only in their heads, or very contained, telling to themselves “I don’t need anyone, not even myself”,” argues Laurie Hawkes, psychologist and psychotherapist. Talking to oneself is a common habit revealing nothing in particular about the personality of those who do it. “However, some extroverted people do it stronger and longer than others. They like to have an audience and prefer to think out loud with someone. When there is no one there, they do it more,” adds Hawkes.
If the fact of speaking to oneself – or simply talking – and thinking out loud, is often associated with madness in the collective imagination, the act would nevertheless be very natural. According to the psychologist, the act would even be useful. Thinking aloud for instance helps us to better organize, allows us to clarify our thoughts, “it makes things more concrete than if we’d keep them in our heads,” adds Laurie Hawkes.
Think back for a second to your math problems in high school for example. Presenting information orally could help unblock a situation. It goes the same when doing our calculation. We usually don’t even finish our sentences. “We can also use it to reassure, encourage or congratulate ourselves. This contributes to own autonomy, you get to recognize yourself. We can also use it to reframe, with sentences like “but what an idiot, why did you do that?”,” believes Hawkes.
Talking out loud, alone, can also act as a rehearsal before a stressful meeting where we are to speak to someone else. “It is useful when you have a job interview, an evaluation. We also use it in therapy, we ask the patient to imagine his boss on an empty chair, ”comments the psychologist.
Laurie Hawkes also sees the phenomenon as having a “digestive” function. “When we have had a difficult or shortened interaction, or both, we need to finish the story. Talking alone can lead to ruminations because we would have liked to finish the scene. We go on with “whys” and this is very difficult to bear,” says the psychologist.
For a fact, the phenomenon is not alarming. But if it occurs very often, it can possibly translate into a lack of exchange and invite you to see other humans to exchange. In this case, you know what’s left to be done.
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