The High Ground Effect: Why You Feel the Urge to Jump When You’re Up High

   It’s finally time for annual leave! You happily came to the picturesque bridge, overlooking the magnificent rivers and mountains. Suddenly, you find that your hands are trembling slightly, your hands are sweating frequently, and you suddenly have the urge to jump down in your mind.
   What’s going on, could it be that you don’t want to live as a social animal?
Void call is just an illusion of the brain

   Don’t panic, this phenomenon is actually quite common. In Pirates of the Caribbean, our captain also mentioned this feeling of wanting to jump off the edge of a cliff.
   In the world, it has many names: the romantic French called it “the call of the void”. And in “The Unbearable Lightness of Being”, there is also a related description: “Vertigo is not the fear of falling, it is the empty voice under our feet that lures and lures us.” In fact, similar to “weird temptation” is much more than
   that One kind: suddenly want to jump into the track at the subway station, suddenly want to throw the mobile phone out while rowing on the lake, suddenly want to reach out and touch in front of the fire, or even want to lick a telephone pole in winter in the Northeast… This kind of “action
   ” The behavior of “death” actually has a scientific explanation. In 2012, scholars from Florida State University in the United States named this impulse to jump as the “high ground effect”, and explained that this is actually a misunderstanding of our behavior by the brain, which is caused by the incoordination of different sensory systems.
   Specifically, the whole process is roughly divided into three steps:
   when we stand at a high place, the amygdala and other parts of the brain with super fast response will quickly respond to the potential “falling” danger, and issue a retreat command to prevent ourselves from belching.
   After a while, the central part of the brain that processes consciousness was activated one step behind, and began to ruminate about my behavior: Why should I back down?
   In the end, our upper body-like brain of Kogoro Mori will interpret the original risk-averse behavior as a tendency to jump down: such a solid railing will retreat? It doesn’t make sense, the only explanation is that I want to jump down!
   Therefore, under such a disordered perception system, we will feel an urge to jump down. In the final analysis, it is the wrong speculation of the brain that directs us.
   In addition to this, Adam Anderson, a cognitive neuroscientist at Cornell University, also proposed another explanation: At a high place, the consciousness in the brain will become a “dumb little guy”, trying to get rid of the current object regardless of the results. Fear of heights, for it, landing directly on the ground is the best choice, which creates the urge to jump down.
The more anxious you are, the easier it is to be summoned by the void

   Although the high ground effect is not uncommon, its frequency is actually related to personal characteristics.
   A 2012 experiment found that people with high anxiety sensitivity are more likely to be called to the void.
   Anxiety sensitivity refers to the degree of fear of anxiety-related feelings and symptoms. Higher anxiety sensitivity is associated with a tendency to misinterpret innocuous bodily sensations as threatening or to respond negatively to ambiguous stimuli.
   For example, for ordinary people, falling on the ground may be just an accident, but people with high anxiety sensitivity are more likely to start worrying about whether their balance ability has deteriorated.
   Therefore, when they are at a high place, people with high anxiety sensitivity are more likely to catch the incoordination of their brain’s perception system, and are more inclined to take this impulse seriously, and start to think seriously about whether they really want to jump off.
   From this point of view, people who are prone to the high ground effect may also be relatively more sensitive and anxious in life.
   However, looking at it from another angle, the high ground effect also tells us that many similar anxieties have no substantive meaning. Sometimes the revelation you think God gave you may be just a coincidence and an illusion.
What counteracts your impulse is fear

   Although there will be an urge to jump down from a high place, no one will actually jump because of it.
   Fear is the barrier that stops you from impulsiveness.
   Among all phobias, fear of heights is almost the most common, with one in twenty people having a fear of heights .
   Although to a certain extent, fear of heights may be related to acquired experience. But research has found that some people may just be born afraid of heights. For example, a 2015 study found that most people can complete accurate estimates of horizontal distances, but estimates of heights can be as much as 2 times off the actual situation. This difference in visual navigation also makes these people more afraid of falls and heights .
   As animals on the ground, it is actually normal for humans to have this kind of fear. This can help us instinctively stay away from dangerous areas and reduce the chance of injury or death caused by falling from a height.
   After all, sometimes, there is no fear, is the real horror.

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