Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Apparently you'll make better decisions if you look at this picture


We all make bad decisions, don’t we: we spend money we don’t have on things we don’t need, we say the wrong things at precisely the wrong moments, we swipe right on people who turn out to be total bellends.

But! Your days of making horrible decisions are over! Maybe! That’s if you believe a new study from Ben Gurion University, anyway.

Scientists at the university have found that looking at photos of cold scenes – as opposed to photos of warmer climes – elicited “greater cognitive control” in their subjects.

Cognitive control is described by the researchers as “the ability to deliberately inhibit responses or make choices that maximise the long-term best interests of the individual”.


The team asked subjects to perform an “anti-saccade task”, which asks them to look in the opposite direction to a moving object (which is harder than it sounds). And the subjects shown images of “winter scenery” and asked to picture themselves there performed significantly better than those shown a scene of a “temperature neutral concrete street” and a “sunny landscape”.

“The result indicated that those viewing the cold landscape did better and that even without a physical trigger, cognitive control can be activated through conceptual processes alone,” said lead researcher Dr Idit Shalev.

“While signals of warmth induce a relaxed attitude, cool signals trigger alertness and a possible need for greater cognitive control.”

So next time you need to make an important decision, take a look at a wintery scene – it might just stop you making a huge mistake.



Show this to your boss - science says napping makes you happier


The science of a broken heart


Your life actually flashes before your eyes when you die, says science


Why are we all so obsessed with serial killers?


Stormzy calls out Met Police for bizarre Notting Hill Carnival tweet

Once again, he is spot on

by Dave Fawbert
22 Aug 2017

A story saying Big Ben will be renamed for Muslims has upset idiots

Winding up racists - never not funny

by Dave Fawbert
21 Aug 2017

13 facts about cheating all couples need to know

Number one fact: Don't do it

by Gary Ogden
21 Aug 2017

Londoners have revealed their favourite and most-hated Tube lines

Which is your favourite line?

by Dave Fawbert
21 Aug 2017

The 10 most liveable cities in the world have been named

Did your home make the cut?

by Tom Victor
21 Aug 2017

Sir Bruce Forsyth has died aged 89

The legendary presenter has died aged 89

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

The biggest stereotype about men and sex is actually a load of rubbish

We've been wrong this whole time

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

Discover the words that became cool in the year you were born

Were you born in the year of booty calls or cybersex?

by Emily Reynolds
18 Aug 2017

This German town came up with a genius way of humiliating neo-Nazis

Is this the best possible way to deal with them?

by Alex Finnis
18 Aug 2017

Donald Trump’s lawyer: possibly not racist, definitely not intelligent

Oldest trick in the book

by Tom Victor
17 Aug 2017