# You actually control less than you think

At about 9 o’clock every morning, a man wearing a red hat would stand on a square and wave his hat frantically. He disappeared again after 5 minutes. One day a policeman came up to him: “What the hell are you doing?” “I am driving a giraffe.” “There are no giraffes here.” “Yes, it’s because I do a good job.”

A friend had a broken leg and was tied to the bed. He asked me to go to the post office to buy him a lottery ticket. I circled 6 numbers, wrote his name on it, and paid the fee. When I handed him a copy of the lottery ticket, he rudely said: “Why did you fill out the lottery ticket for me? I wanted to fill it out myself. I definitely won’t win anything with the numbers you filled out!” “You really think , Can you influence those balls to some extent by circling the numbers yourself?” I replied. He looked at me blankly.

The illusion of control refers to the tendency to believe that we can control or influence something that we objectively cannot control or influence. This was discovered in 1965 by two researchers, Jenkins and Ward. The test rule is simple: two switches and one light, the light can be turned on or off. Jenkins and Ward can adjust the intensity of the switch and the light. Even when the lights were turned on and off by accident, the subjects believed that pressing the switch could affect the lights to some extent.

An American scientist put people in a sound room and kept raising the volume until the subject refused to investigate people’s pain tolerance to noise. There are two sound rooms, A sound room and B sound room, they are exactly the same, there is only one difference: there is a red emergency button on the wall of B sound room. The results of it? The people in the B sound room are exposed to much louder noise. The funny thing is that the emergency button doesn’t work at all. The illusion itself is enough to raise the limit of people’s pain.

When crossing the streets in Manhattan, people will push a traffic light button. In fact they pressed a button that didn’t work. Then why is there this button? It is to convince pedestrians that they can influence the signal controller. Facts have proved that they can better endure the waiting at the traffic lights. They are called “comfort buttons” in science. There is also the temperature adjustment switch of the air conditioner in a large office: some people think it is too hot, others think it is too cold. Smart engineers will use the illusion of control to install a fake temperature adjustment button on each floor. As a result, the number of complaints has been significantly reduced.

how about you? Do you control your life? You may actually control less than you think. Don’t think that you are the Mark Olaer who calmly restrains yourself, you are more like the man in the red hat. Therefore, please focus your attention on the few things that you can really influence-unswervingly focus on only the most important ones. Others, just leave it alone.