Studies conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania suggest that advice beginning with, “Girl…” may be more effective than advice either preceded by nothing, or by alternatives such as “Here’s the thing,” or “Listen…”
“I’d been trying to tell my friend Mackenzie to stop going into a shame spiral over simple mistakes for years, but she never listened to me,” says lead researcher Dr. Alannah Lejeune, whose real life inspired the study. “I noticed it wasn’t until I gave her the exact same advice, only beginning with ‘Girl…’ that she finally got her shit together. That’s when I knew I was onto something.”
Lejeune’s research went on to find advice beginning with “Girl…” is 100% more effective than other types of advice.
Participants in the who were told to “stop texting that scrub,” had an astounding 3% success rate in reaching their friends, whereas those who were simply told, “Girl…stop,” not only stopped texting the scrub, but also went on to receive a round of applause from the researchers and to raise their standards in general.
The control group, who was given no advice one way or another, would also not stop texting that scrub.
“It’s truly remarkable,” says Dr. Brandon Fiksel, a member of the research team. “What’s even more interesting is that advice starting with, ‘Girl…’ has a profound effect on anyone, regardless of gender.”
“You could give be giving advice to your BFF or your dad, or even a pet,” says Dr. Lejeune. “As long as you say, ‘Girl…’ first, you’re going to see results. That’s how I housetrained my cat, Deuce. She finally uses the litter box now and also she’s just crushing it at catching dead birds.”
Why is this method of giving advice so much more effective? Researchers believe it could be because “Girl…” carries with it a sense of warmth and unity, whereas advice without a sisterly prelude could sound more like an intervention, causing your friend to tune you out and continue drinking Pinnacle whipped vodka as though it tasted good.
After completing multiple trials all supporting this hypothesis, the same research team has begun a new study suggesting that any sentence beginning with “Boy…” is a sure sign that a list of complaints is about to follow.