Research & More Wisdom


Trust Your Authentic Feelings and Predict the Future

Did you know that when you trust your feelings about something, you are more likely to predict the future? This may seem obvious at first – when you are right you know it, you trust that. But there may be something more subtle going on.

New research, published in the Journal of Consumer Research finds that “higher trust in feelings may result in more accurate predictions about a variety of future events.”

Study participants were asked to predict a number of future outcomes, including the 2008 Democratic presidential nominee, movements of the Dow Index, and even the weather. It turns out that the people who had a higher trust in their own feelings were able to more accurately predict the outcomes than those who trusted their own feelings less.

Scientists call this the emotional oracle effect: when we rely on our feelings or intuition, we include all we are aware of (all we know consciously and unconsciously) into a “feels right” or “feels wrong” summary. This cumulative knowledge allows us to make better predictions by giving us access to a “privileged window” beyond what mere analytical reasoning provides. Some basic information is useful though, since participants trusting their feelings could better predict weather in their own geography but not around the globe.


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