Even if you’re good at hiding your feelings when you’re stressed, the language you use can blow your cover.
According to Nature, researchers wanted to analyze the biology of people whose physical heath was affected by negative factors such as poverty or social isolation to provide insight into the body’s evolutionary response to a threat. However, due to a disconnect between how people described their anxiety and how their bodies reacted to it, scientists turned to speech for clarity.
After wiring up 143 people to audio recorders for two days, scientists noted which “function words” — words that pop out without much thought — were used during times of stress.
Yahoo Lifestyle could not reach study co-author Matthias Mehl of the University of Arizona for comment; however, he told Nature, “By themselves they don’t have any meaning, but they clarify what’s going on.”
Researchers determined that those under stress not only talk less, but they also often use words such as “really,” “incredibly,” “certainly,” and “very.” What’s so obvious about these buzzwords? Mehl told Nature they act as “emotional intensifiers” and indicate that our bodies are in a heightened state.
So the next time you’re trying to keep your cool under pressure, choose your words wisely.
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