Those who speak to themselves while focusing on a task do better than those who stay quiet, experts at Bangor University found.
Psychologists at the university gave 28 people a set of written instructions and asked them to read them either silently or out loud before measuring their concentration and performance.
They found when people read instructions out loud, their brains absorb more of the material than if they only use their inner dialogue, according to Mirror.
Dr. Paloma Mari-Beffa, senior lecturer in neuropsychology and cognitive psychology, said, “Our results demonstrated that, even if we talk to ourselves to gain control during challenging tasks, performance substantially improves when we do it out loud.”
“Talking out loud, when the mind is not wandering, could actually be a sign of high cognitive functioning… The stereotype of the mad scientist talking to themselves, lost in their own inner world, might reflect the reality of a genius who uses all the means at their disposal to increase their brain power,” she added.
It may explain why sports stars like Maria Sharapova , 30, or Serena Williams , 35, talk to themselves or grunt during high-stress matches.
This can probably help explain why so many sports professionals, such as tennis players, frequently talk to themselves during competitions, often at crucial points in a game, saying things like, ‘come on!’ to help them stay focused,” Mari-Beffa noted.
The article by Dr. Mari-Beffa was originally published on The Conversation.