‘E’ for egotism influences your decisionsMarch 17th, 2011 - 6:19 pm ICT by IANS
Washington, March 17 (IANS) Your name can influence your personality, especially its letters. Psychologists have postulated that the letters — particularly the first letter of our names — can influence decisions, including whom we marry and where we move.
The effect is called “implicit egotism”.
In 2008, two Belgian researchers found that workers in their country were more likely to choose a workplace if the first letter of its name matched their own, the journal Psychological Science reports.
A review study found the Belgians got the cause and effect exactly backwards. And that might make us more skeptical about the effects of implicit egotism.
“Walt Disney worked for a company starting with D not because of an unconscious attraction to that letter,” writes University of Pennsylvania associate professor Uri Simonsohn, “but because he so christened it”.
Simonsohn analyzed records of political donations made during the 2004 campaigns, which include donors’ names and employers, according to a Pennsylvania statement.
Like the Belgians, he found that the first initials matched. But then he compared those first-letter matches with matches of the first three letters, which more accurately reflect the actual names of both the people and the firms.
Analyzing the two side by side, he found the effect of the one-letter match dropped away, while the three-letter sharing increased the match of person to company a striking 64-fold.
It was because many people work at firms they named or at those founded by their grandfathers or brothers.
Simonsohn doesn’t discount implicit egotism altogether. “I can’t imagine people don’t like their own letter more than other letters,” he says.
- First letter of our name can influence our life choices - Mar 17, 2011
- Vehicles with letter Z in registration plates have most crashes - Apr 12, 2011
- Indian-born Kamal Bawa wins award for sustainability work - Feb 18, 2012
- Study finds how we recall 'irrelevant' info - Feb 25, 2011
- Charlotte Bronte's love letters to Belgian professor found - Jan 27, 2012
- Verbal cues improve visual detection - Jul 13, 2010
- 'Mod' is my first love story: Nagesh Kukunoor - Aug 03, 2011
- New findings on drug tolerance could help cure TB faster - Mar 04, 2011
- Baby's genome decoded from mom's blood, pop's saliva - Jun 07, 2012
- 'Simple names win more favour at workplace' - Feb 09, 2012
- New discoveries resolve debate over oxygen in Earth's mantle - Dec 15, 2010
- 28 Belgians die in Swiss bus accident (Evening Lead) - Mar 14, 2012
- Study examines how being nice helps - Mar 10, 2011
- Neurological process behind recognition of letters and numbers uncovered - Jul 27, 2010
- Weakened flu virus to make more effective vaccine - Jun 23, 2010
Tags: associate professor, belgian researchers, belgians, campaigns, cause and effect, donors, egotism, grandfathers, initials, march 17, match, pennsylvania statement, personality, political donations, psychological science, psychologists, three letters, unconscious attraction, university of pennsylvania, walt disney