As a motivational speaker, I’m always digging for good information to bring to my audiences. I just came across this juicy bit of research regarding experts we trust.
A group of adults in an Emory University experiment on decision-making were hooked up to a functional MRI machine and were asked to make a series of financial choices. For part of the testing, they made choices on their own. Then a financial expert gave them advice on which choices to make. Guess what? That’s when the decision-making part of their brain shut down. They ceded power to the expert. According to lead researcher Dr. Gregory Berns, the study indicates that “the brain relinquishes responsibility when a trusted authority provides expertise.”
This makes sense. Why waste brain power when we can make decisions based on what we believe is solid advice? Goodness knows I’m going to listen to my accountant’s tax advice rather than spend hours reading piles of information I’ll never understand. I’m going to trust fellow-blogger Polly’s expert input on healthy eating given her years of nutrition and study. There are areas of our lives where we’ve given power over to others, be they experts in finance, medicine, law or some other field.
But, there is nothing more powerful than listening to our truth. Experts aren’t always aware of what’s best for us. Don’t be so quick to discount your own feelings, intelligence and decision-making abilities, especially when it comes to deciding who to trust in the first place!