Need to recall where you parked the car? Shut your eyes and think about it. No, it’s not an old wives tale either.
A study published in Legal and Criminal Psychology has found that closing your eyes to remember something really works. Researchers had 178 people watch a short film (featuring a guy who shows up somewhere, breaks in, and robs the joint), and afterwards, they interviewed the participants, asking for details about the film (“What did he find in the coffee table in the den?”). Half of the participants were allowed to close their eyes when they were recalling something, and half weren’t.
Participants who were allowed to close their eyes got answer right 23% more of the time than the participants who weren’t.
According to researchers, “the cognitive load hypothesis proposes that by reducing environmental interference, eyeclosure frees up witnesses’ cognitive resources to invest in recollecting past events.”
Translation: when you close your eyes, you reduce distractions. Hey, works for us.