Barnum Effect (Forer)

Barnum Effect (Forer)

Barnum Effect (Forer)
What the horoscope says is soooo true

You need to be loved and admired, and yet you are critical of yourself. You certainly have weak points in your personality, but you generally know how to compensate for them. You have enormous potential that you have not yet used to your advantage. On the outside you are disciplined and you know how to control yourself, but on the inside you tend to be preoccupied and insecure. Sometimes you seriously wonder if you made the right decision or done the right thing. You prefer a certain dose of change and variety, and become dissatisfied if you are surrounded with restrictions and limitations. You flatter yourself that you are an independent mind; and you only accept the opinion of others when duly demonstrated. You found it awkward to reveal yourself too easily to others. At times you are very outgoing, talkative and outgoing, while at other times you are introverted, wary and reserved. Some of your aspirations tend to be quite unrealistic."

Did you recognize yourself in this description? You are then a victim of the Barnum Effect.

The Barnum effect, the Forer effect, the subjective validation effect, the personal validation effect or the sink effect all mean the same thing: the fact that a person tends to accept a vague description of the personality as real and specifically applying to it. herself. Basically, the more vague, the more likely you are to tell yourself that this is for you.

How was this effect discovered?

In 1948, psychologist Bertram Forer created an experiment with his students. He gives them a personality test. At the end of the test, he takes all the papers, goes home and throws them in the trash (the goal is not to analyze these results).

A little later, he returns the test result to each student. This result (given as a description) is the same for everyone (the text you normally read at the beginning of this article) but the students do not know it.

Drill then asks them to rate the description from 0 (not at all) to 5 (completely) to see if it corresponds to their personality. Result: 4.26. The experiment is then repeated several times with similar results.

The name Barnum effect is attributed to psychologist Paul E. Meehl who gave this name in reference to the circus man Phineas Taylor Barnum who said, among other things, "Everyone finds in my show what he came for."

Why does it work?

We have to keep a stable and positive image of ourselves over the long term. In addition, our brain is always trying to make sense, so we fill the void of generality with the interpretations that suit us. Finally, humans like to be flattered, so if we are told nice things, we tend to think that it suits us ...

What enhances the Barnum effect?

Psychologists Dickson and Kelly pointed out that the assessment of relevance increases according to different factors:

How do you protect yourself from it? (if you want it of course)

Knowing that the effect exists is already the first and the biggest step in preventing it. Taking a step back from what you read or hear is also important. You can also ask your friends if the description of the horoscope would also apply to them by any chance? Are the horoscopes of the other signs not right for you as well? In short, keep a critical mind and train your zetetic.

Written by Maxou (09/27/2021)
Views: 44

Other articles in the category

Other articles in the theme

By continuing to browse this site, you agree to the use of cookies and other tracers to generate visit statistics and allow content to be shared.