“A stranger approached me at a grocery store. “Do you need help finding something?” he asked. At first, I wasn’t sure what he meant. Then the realization kicked in: I was talking out loud, to myself, in public.
It was a habit I’d grown so comfortable with that I didn’t even realize I was doing it.The fairly common habit of talking aloud to yourself is what psychologists call external self-talk. And although self-talk is sometimes looked at as just an eccentric quirk, research has found that it can influence behavior and cognition.
“Language provides us with this tool to gain distance from our own experiences when we’re reflecting on our lives. And that’s really why it’s useful,” said Ethan Kross, a professor of psychology at the University of Michigan.”