12 Photos That'll Help You Make Better Life Decisions, According To Science


Most of us can definitely use some help when it comes to this whole ~life~ thing.

For me personally, I usually never know if I'm making the right decision until after the fact — when I royally screw up and it's too late to do anything about it.

But, thanks to science, we have a simple, little life hack to help start making better decisions.

All you need to do is look at this picture...

Amos Chapple

Or this one...

Jovana Milanko

...or even this one.

Kitty Gallannaugh

Yes, it actually is that easy.

A new study from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev has shown the perception of cold temperatures elicits greater cognitive control — even if that perception comes just from looking at a picture.

"Cognitive control" is just a fancy way to refer to your ability to make choices that maximize your long-term best interests, aka smart decision-making.

Dr. Idit Shalev, lead researcher on the study, explained this strange phenomenon.

According to a press release, she said,

Metaphorical phrases like 'coldly calculating,' 'heated response' and 'cool-headed' actually have some scientific validity, which we demonstrate in our study. Previous research focused on the actual effect of temperature on the psychological phenomenon known as 'cognitive control.' But this is the first time we were able to measure the effects of perceived temperature.

The study included two different experiments.

In the first, the researchers told students to look in the opposite direction of a moving object — which is much harder than it sounds — and measured the students' cognitive control in performing the task.

Then, in the second experiment, students were shown images of winter scenery, a temperature-neutral concrete street and a sunny landscape. The researchers instructed them to picture themselves in those respective settings.

Dr. Shalev elaborated on the findings,

The result indicated that those viewing the cold landscape did better and that even without a physical trigger cognitive control can be activated through conceptual processes alone.

DAMN, science is cool.

So, basically...

Robert Kohlhuber

If you just take a quick look at these pictures before you have to make really important life decisions...

Robert Zaleski

Like picking out an apartment...

Tara Romasanta

Or accepting or declining a job offer...

Juri Pozzi

Or choosing a school to attend...

Beatrix Boros

...then you're much more likely to make the right choice.

Tara Romasanta

If bae is down on one knee and asking for your hand in marriage...

Juri Pozzi

...just be like, "Hold up one sec, babe!" and whip out your phone really quickly to look at this article.

Robert Kohlhuber

He'll understand, right?

Nicole Young

If he doesn't, just tell it's because SCIENCE.

Citations: Picturing Cold Increases Cognitive Control (American Associates Ben-Gurion University of the Negev)