Psychology 101: Only Slightly Crazy

Today I’ve got a special surprise! And that surprise is that I’m actually not going to mooch off my DP classes and instead using a lil bit of research I conducted to write an interesting article for you guys 🙂 And this article is about superstitions!

What are superstitions?

According to google superstitions are beliefs in the supernatural. It sounds really abstract when put like that – but a lot of people are superstitious!

The definition of superstitious to me is the unexplainable belief that certain things can cause other things.

For example superstitious beliefs can include: believing four leafed clovers bring you good luck, the number 4 or 13 brings you bad luck or ~ my favourite ~ that if you say something bad will happen you have to touch your head so it doesn’t happen. (That’s a real superstition trust me).

However if we look at the definition superstitions extends to believing in the supernatural so if you believe in things such as ghosts then that would be considered superstitious too!

But why do people believe in these?

One reason some people believe is because their superstitions have been proven to work. Let’s say you have a special bracelet you wear every time your favourite sports team is playing. They’re a very good team and they win all the time. However, one day you forget to wear your bracelet and they lose their match. This would affirm your superstition that your bracelet has the power to control your sports team.

The uncertainty hypothesis could also be a good explanation. This uncertainty hypothesis suggests that when people are unsure about an outcome they want some way of controlling it – hence the special bracelet.

But how do we explain other superstitions such as four leaf clovers, walking under ladders and black cats?

A few reasons. Maybe because we all like to believe in a little bit of magic? That there’s more to the universe than there appears to be. Being superstitious can also make you feel good about yourself. Seeing a four leaf clover will probably make you feel great regardless of whether it’s lucky or not.

And lastly most superstitious people probably would say, “why not believe?” I wouldn’t consider myself a superly superstitious person but I’m ready to admit I do have little superstitious behaviours. My main reason for doing them goes along the same lines of “why not” because what’s the worst that could happen? Partaking in little superstitions don’t harm anyone and what if they really are true – the consequences in ignoring them would be worse.

So that ends my psychology article for today. I know I sound maybe a little slightly ~ crazy ~ at the end but I’m sure I’m not the only semi superstitious person. See you next time!





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s