Blirtatiousness: the propensity to blurt

“Converging evidence indicates that blirtatiousness is unique in its ability to amplify people’s qualities, making these qualities more readily observable to perceivers.”

Blirtatiousness in this case means the propensity to blurt* – bearing in mind that : “For some people, no sooner do thoughts come to mind than they fly out of their mouth.” One of the very few formal scientific studies to look at the psychological consequences of blurting was performed in 2001 of the University of Texas at Austin. Authors William B. Swann and Peter J. Rentfrow not only organised a complex series of experiments to investigate the effects of various levels of blurting, but also devised the Brief Loquaciousness and Interpersonal Responsiveness Test (BLIRT) to quantify its effects.
The resulting paper, Blirtatiousness: Cognitive, behavioral, and physiological consequences of rapid responding. was published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81, 1160-1175. And can also be read in full here:

BONUS: An online test based on BLIRT is available here : and can (it is alleged) reveal whether you are a blurter or a brooder (and how this might affect your love life).

* Note: Improbable has adopted the more usual spelling of ‘blurt’ rather than ‘blirt’ which, according to several dictionaries, is a nautical term for a gust of wind and rain.

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