Kirsters Baish| If you’ve ever been drunk before, you know that you tend to act like a totally different person than when you are sober. That person who emerges after a few stiff ones may actually be the real you, according to scientists.
A study was published roughly a year ago which stated that the behavior that a drunk person exhibits is actually much closer to their actual personality than the personality that they show when they are sober.
There was a rather large amount of researchers who were part of a collaborative team from both the University of Missouri and Purdue University. These researchers performed a study on a group of 156 participants. These volunteers basically got drunk for free in order for researchers to observe their drunken behavior.
These people were given a survey to complete two weeks before the study. The survey was meant to gather information about the participants’ beliefs and personality traits when sober as well as when they are drunk. The study depended on the honesty of each participant as well as the quality of questions presented to participants in the survey. The scientists were out to prove on thing: that people who are drunk tend to be more honest without fearing the repercussions of their actions.
The volunteers were split up by researchers into two groups. One of the groups was given vodka and Sprite. The other group was just given Sprite. While their idea to use a control group was smart, it still isn’t clear as to how these researchers didn’t think of the fact that the volunteers would know the difference between a drink with alcohol in it and a drink without.
The ones who were drinking vodka with their Sprite were instructed to continue drinking seamlessly, as they were tasked with various things to do while being observed by the sober participants in the study.
After completing the tasks set out for them, the participants were asked to “rate themselves.” They all seemed to believe that they were better at everything when drunk: open to experience, emotionally stable and more extroverted, agreeable essentially. We all know we think we’re invincible when we’re drunk.
However, the sober and neutral observers did not agree with these people, instead relaying the opinion that the drunk and sober people didn’t behave that much differently. That means alcohol creates an illusion of changed behavior in a drinker’s mind, when one might not even be able to identify that the person is intoxicated.
The study found, “Self-perceptions of sober-to-drunk personality differences were more pervasive than observer-perceptions, but alcohol-induced changes in Extraversion, specifically, were robust across measures and reporters.”
It’s pretty ironic that scientists needed to conduct a study to find out something that we already knew. Obviously alcohol changes the way that we think and act. Researchers got paid to get people drunk and observe their behavior. It’s amazing the way our economy works.