Have you ever done something stupid and heard your brain go, you’re such a stupid duck or did something amazing and heard yourself go Bravo? Well, some people never have an inner voice telling them what to do.
A study conducted by psychologist Russell Hurlburt at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, revealed that several people don’t have an inner voice. With the help of his patented beepers which went off at random times, volunteers were made to note what they internally experienced at that moment.
Intentionally to beepers only went off a few times. After that, researchers asked the volunteers what they were experiencing internally when the beepers went off, were they having any visualizations, tactile (touch) sensations, emotions or an inner voice. This is called descriptive experience sampling (DES).
The first day the answers were vague. However, as participants got comfortable with the DES, the researchers found answers. The average frequency of inner speaking overall was at 26% when people experienced an inner monologue.
The range of percentages varied from 100%, where people always had some sort of inner monologue whenever the beeper went off to 0% where people never had an inner voice at all. Through the exact percentage is not known, there is a significant amount of people who never have an inner voice.
But those who do have one, have you ever wondered where does your inner voice come from? A sensory signal known as corollary discharge can distinguish between inner sensations and external sensations. This plays an important role in inner speech. You can even get it when you’re stressed.
So, if you love having those monologues inside your head or even singing to yourself or even if you don’t have a voice at all, you are as unique as everyone else.