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Do You Have an Inner Monologue?
Have you ever thought about how you think do you? For example tell yourself don't forget to take out the trash then hours later when you hear the garbage truck rolling by think how could I have forgotten that? Is there a constant talking to sell throughout the day? Going on in your head. A lot of people do use language based chatter to organize and focus their thoughts however it turns out that some people don't have this kind of inner monologue at all instead they may rely more on visualization for instance seeing themselves placing the trash bag in the been others employ a combination of these techniques people on both sides of this inner monologue. Divide have a hard time imagining another way of being to the point that it sort of freaked ever went out back in February when the concept was passing around the Internet we spoke with one wrestle. Hurlbert a psychology professor at the University of Nevada. Las Vegas for decades. He's been doing experiments. On People's inner experiences their thoughts feelings and sensations regarding the online kerfuffle over inner speech haves and have nots. He chuckled a bit and said he frequently. Here's people claim that they have an ever present inner monologue but his experiments show that this is not always true but rather than argue with them he says. Well let's find out. His tests began long ago as a graduate student. In the early nineteen seventies. He began wondering how scientists could investigate. Subjects Pristine inner experiences experiences that are in your present consciousness before your brain has tried to make sense of them or assigned them some sort of interpretation. Herbert explained the object of my research is not to explore inner speech or inner monologue. Or whatever you want to call it but to explore your experience as it actually is. He thought that an alarm of some kind might work but back. Then there were no cell phones or pagers so Hurlbert who has an engineering background designed and patented device that beeped at random intervals. Each time the beeper went off. He asked subjects to make notes about their experiences in the moment as students. What about their days? These beepers off at random times. They were instructed to try to clarify what was happening in their minds at that instant the beepers went off only a few times. This was intentional. So that the research subjects would forget that they had them and thus not contaminate their thinking processes with thoughts about the experiment later. Researchers asked students questions to better understand how the students were thinking. When the beeper sounded or they visualizing something experiencing a tactile sensation feeling emotion. This line of inquiry is called descriptive sampling or D. S. Hurlbert sad one key takeaway was that quote. Can't expect a good answer on the first day? Essentially it takes a day or two of training before people find ways to focus on and express what they're experiencing in a given moment in his research. He found most subjects struggled particularly the way. They were talking to themselves when he asked them. For these specific words or sentences many came up blank. He said and in the course of doing that you and I together. I guess you would say we decide. Well I thought I had inner speech but I really don't. His study showed that subjects talked to themselves in Ridley about twenty six percent of the time they were sampled but that many never experienced in her speech while others had up to seventy five percent of the time. The median percentage of time that subjects were sampled experiencing. Inner speech was just twenty percent. Hurlbert has worked with other researchers to use DAS questioning while subjects were inside. Mri Scanners and a twenty eighteen study of to be fair just five subjects. The scanner show that the area of the brain associated with certain topics lit up when subjects said they were thinking about those things. Providing a physical link. The abstractions thoughts still scientists are grappling with a lot of uncertainty. What causes an inner monologue? To begin with some research shows that people often use more inner verbal ization when they're under pressure perhaps they're rehearsing answers to job interview questions or maybe they're trying to focus on competitive task like athletics. Among people who do report in our monologue they tend to perceive those voices as their own. That self talk generally has familiar pace and tone although the exact voice might change depending on whether the current scenario is happy scary or relaxed. Sometimes they might use whole sentences other times they might rely on condensed wordplay that would be meaningless to anyone else but what causes in her speech. Mark Scott a researcher at the University of British Columbia. Found that there's a brain signal called corollary discharge that helps us distinguish between sensory experiences. We create internally versus those from outside Stimuli and the signal plays a big role in internal speech it also plays a role in. How are auditory systems process speech? You see when we speak. There's an internal copy of the sound of our voice that's generated at the same time as our speaking voice as for the online debate regarding inner monologue. Hurlbert understands that online commenters have taken strong positions on the matter. Some people simply can't imagine not having an inner voice others are taken aback by the idea of constant internal chatter. He said half of those people are probably right and half of them are not right about their own. Inner monologue characteristics the main conclusions. Are I think the people don't know what's in their own experience? And he said level of confidence is not a good predictor of whether someone has an active in her monologue but could more accurate measures of our thoughts. Be on the way. An ongoing project called Alter Ego at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has successfully demonstrated that a head mounted gadget can read. People's thoughts device interpret subtle neuro muscular signals. The people make when they internally verbalize certain phrases or words although it still prototype it's been demonstrated to be capable of accuracy of more than ninety percents.