The Hope Experiment πŸ€

Here’s a scary but cool story I found recently called The Hope Experiment… πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡


During an extremely inhumane study at Harvard in the 1950s, Dr. Curt Richter placed rats in a pool of water to test how long they could tread water. πŸ€

On average the rats would give up and sink after ~15 minutes.

But right before they gave up due to exhaustion, the researchers would pluck them out, dry them off, let them rest for a few minutes – and put them back in for a second round.

In this second try – how long do you think they lasted? πŸ€”

Remember – they had just swam until failure only a few short minutes ago…

How long do you think?

Another 15 minutes?

10 minutes?

5 minutes?


They lasted ~60 hours! 😳

Yep, 60 hours of swimming!

The conclusion drawn was that since the rats BELIEVED that they would eventually be rescued, they could push their bodies way past what they previously thought impossible.


HOPE is a remarkable thing.

It’s more powerful than fear, and it will get you through life’s roughest patches.

Today: Have hope. Keep swimming! You are capable of way more than you think you are.

Happy Monday!
– Joel

PS. Looks like some of Dr. Richter’s original experiment notes can be found here: On the Phenomenon of Sudden Death
in Animals and Man (warning, it’s not for the faint of heart. It really is disgusting how they treat animals 😀)

The hope experiment rats

Feature photo by Taton MoΓ―se