That mountain looks big, doesn't it?
Have you ever held onto a secret? Been weighed down by a secret? Felt the burden of secrecy? They way we talk about it, you'd think a secret was a physical entity you had to carry around with you from place to place. Surprising new research finds that might not be so far from the truth.
Michael Slepian, a social psychologist at Tufts University, recently tested whether the burden of secrets goes beyond the metaphorical. To do this, he recreated an old experiment where participants had to hold a heavy object and look at picture of a hill and estimate the slope, then try to toss a beanbag at a target. The idea is that if you're schlepping a full backpack, the thought of having to lug it up a hill is going to make that hill look like a tough climb. And it will make that target look so far away . In Slepian's version, subjects held a secret instead of physical load. He had them write down either a big or small secret they were holding, then perform the tasks.Read More »from Your Secrets Are Weighing You Down—Literally