How Does A Mentalist Guess Names?

Derren Brown is probably the most famous British Mentalist, and unlike others who claim it’s some special power, he is very happy to explain how he does tricks after he has done them. I’m going to use some of Derren Brown’s tricks and tricks from other magicians to demonstrate how simple it is to fool people into thinking you can read their minds. So, how do Mentalists guess people’s names?
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So how do mentalists guess names?

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mentalists guess names using these technics: body language, facial cues, game playing, prior research, and context clues.

The technique of how mentalists guess names is explained in some ways. But what it isn’t is telepathic mind-reading. A mentalist uses their five senses to create the experience of a sixth sense. These techniques involve the use of psychology, reading body language, or influencing via suggestion.


Body language is one psychological technique that mentalists can use to help them guess names. Some everyday body language movements that can reveal your name to a mentalist include:

  • Changing your hairstyle
  • Deep breathing vs. shallow breathing vs. holding your breath
  • Changing one’s weight from one foot to the other
  • When the Mentalist mentions a name, he looks up nervously.
  • Mentalists will look for nods or head shakes as indicators of agreement or disagreement with what is being said when attempting to guess a name from body language; eye contact can also be an indicator.


Mentalists may use tiny movements such as a person’s brows or mouth to pick up on facial cues. Mentalists will also pay attention to how someone says their name, whether with pride and joy or with embarrassment. Emotions can be a dead giveaway when it comes to guessing games.

Mentalists may use tiny movements such as: to pick up on cues in faces.

  1. The eyes, mouth, or chin of a person are moving or twitching.
  2. In response to a question, furrowed brows.
  3. Lips pouting or a dropped jaw
  4. Some mentalists will use spoken words to guess your name as well. Mentalists may ask, “What’s your favorite season?” and then observe how the person responds.


When there are no other hints to guess someone’s name, it is time for some gamesmanship or sleight-of-hand tricks, such as pulling out ten cards with names written on them and asking the person which one speaks to them.
A mentalist may use the words said by the person as cues to how he should continue his line. For example, if someone says they’re from Chicago, the mentalist may inquire about their favorite neighborhood.

Mentalists can play games with you until you learn something personal about them, and then they can use that knowledge to guess your name. The mentalist may request a word from you. begins with the letter “A,” followed by another that begins with the letter “B.” They will eventually learn something personal about you from what you say or do without intending to.

The mentalist may also take something from your pocket and ask you to name it. If the mentalist has a list of names, they may choose one from it as their guess. The mentalist will then repeat this process until he correctly guesses your name or gives up trying.


Once the mentalist has enough information, they can begin to make educated guesses about you, such as where you live, what school you attend, or your friends. This strategy takes time, and most mentalists do not reveal all of the information they know about you to make it more of a guessing game.

One method for attempting to guess a name is to ask questions about an audience member’s personal life, such as:

  • “What are your interests?”
  • “Do you enjoy traveling?”
  • “What do you enjoy doing for fun?”
  • If they say yes, mentalists will ask if they have a favorite country or region.
  • city in that region “Have you ever been to Paris?” for example. They may say no, but they have made numerous trips to other locations.
  • If they say no, the mentalists will ask what their favorite city is and if they have visited it in person.
  • They may also be looking for a specific type of location, such as the country or region in which you live.

Mentalists rely on their subconscious minds.

The subconscious notices micro gestures, expressions, and other things that are loaded with information about the person and can only be decoded by the subconscious. When a mentalist’s subconscious mind absorbs this information, it generates images, words, and sounds in his mind that are closely related to the name. Mentalists are highly trained professionals. They can vividly see the images their minds create, as well as listen to their minds and become more receptive.

Assume the person’s name is Christopher. As a result, a mentalist’s subconscious can form images of Jesus Christ, a Christmas gift, a stop sign, a toe, being a class topper, and so on.

Using prior research to guess names

Another technique used by mentalists is to conduct preliminary research on the people they will be meeting.

Certainly, if a mentalist appears on a show alongside another famous person, there is the opportunity to conduct preliminary research. If you know where to look, you can find an incredible amount of information these days.

So, while a name guess may appear to the audience to be mind-reading, the mentalist knew the name beforehand.

WORDPLAY to influence a choice

In the world of Mentalism, this is known as “suggestion,” and while it is not guaranteed, it is certainly used in the performer’s favor.

So, while you THINK you made a free choice and chose any name, you were FORCED to choose a name that the Mentalist wanted you to have all along.

This is also referred to as “Magicians’ Choice.”

There are linguistic methods for “suggesting” or “forcing” a specific outcome, but there are also more practical and guaranteed methods for forcing a selection, which I will explain now.

Let’s say we have 3 pieces of paper on the table with different names on them.

We want to “force” someone to choose one of these names, but we want it to appear as if they have complete freedom.

Assume in this case that we want to “force” the name COLIN on someone.

Before you begin, write the sentence “You will choose the name COLIN” on another piece of paper as a secret prediction.

Fold it up and give it to your audience, asking them not to look at it until the end.

“Pick up any two pieces of paper and hand them to me,” you say, pointing to the three pieces of paper on the table.

So we now have two possibilities.
1: They can choose between Colin and another name.
2: They can pick up the remaining two pieces while leaving Colin on the table.
OUTCOME 1: If they take both other names and leave Colin on the table, you say, “Whichever name we are left with will be used.”
Tell them to open the piece of paper you gave them earlier, and we’ll have a miracle!
OUTCOME 2: If they choose the name Colin and any other one of the two, tell them that we will now discard the one left on the table because they have chosen only these two names.

Then say, “OK, we have two left; which one are you going to choose?”
If they choose Colin, tell them to open your prediction and we will have a Miracle!
If they choose the other name, you say, “OK, so I’m going to eliminate this one as well, leaving us with our final choice… Colin.”
Then request that they open your prediction, and we’ll have a miracle!
So, we’re working on the process of elimination, which is very powerful when done correctly.

How does a mentalist guess what you’re thinking?

Mentalists guess numbers using a number of methods to either see through to the answer that is written and placed in a special envelope, or they use something called a Swami pencil to write it after you’ve written yours.

How do magicians guess what you write?

The mentalist takes the first envelope and magically examines it, typically by holding it to their forehead. After concentrating, they announce what is written on the paper. The envelope is then opened to check that they have read it correctly.

Is mentalism a trick?

While some magicians will integrate some mind reading or clairvoyance into their act, a pure mentalism performance typically doesn’t feature any traditional tricks or grand stage illusions.

Is mentalism a part of psychology?

In psychology, mentalism refers to those branches of study that concentrate on perception and thought processes, for example: mental imagery, consciousness and cognition, as in cognitive psychology.

How do mentalists perform their tricks?

A mentalist uses technical skill, misdirection, psychological subtleties, hypnosis (suggestion), cold reading, and showmanship to demonstrate what appears to be extraordinary-mind reading, foresight, clairvoyance, and telekinesis. One of the mentalist personality traits is curiosity.

How do mentalists guess words from books?

The mentalist then asks the spectator to pick one of the two books but uses a force to ensure they always pick the one containing the memorized word. The simplest method is to ask the user to choose one of the books and point to it. If they choose the force book, the magician simply hands it to them.

What is a cool nickname for a girl?

Best Nicknames For Girls Cookie – a sweet girl. Smiley Face – a girl that smiles a lot. Barbie – is a perfect woman. Rat – a food sniffer.

Is there any course for mentalism?

The Mentalism Diploma Course will take you up to 150 hours to complete, working from home. There is no time limit for completing this course, it can be studied in your own time at your own pace. This is a Level 3 course and will give you 150 CPD (Continued Professional Development) points.

Is the mentalist realistic?

Yet, instead of using mysterious psychic powers, mentalists leverage special techniques based on highly-developed mental abilities and a deep understanding of human psychology. So, long story short. While Patrick Jane is a fictional character, mentalists are definitely real.

Who is the best mentalist in the world?

Alexander – The Man Who Knows. Joseph Dunninger. Derren Brown. Uri Geller. Max Maven. Theodore Annemmann. The Amazing Kreskin. James Randi.

What is the theory of mentalism?

The mentalist learning theory emphasizes the role of the mind in language acquisition by arguing that humans are born with an innate and biological capacity to learn languages. This theory was spearheaded by Noam Chomsky, and arose in response to B. F. Skinner’s radical behaviorism.

Who is the father of mentalism?

The Magical Art of Mentalism is Born While the first recorded mentalism act can be traced back to a performance in 1572 by pioneering sleight of hand magician Girolamo Scotto, mentalism didn’t really break into the mainstream until the early 1800’s.

What is a an example of Mentalistic behavior?

Traditional psychology is mentalistic in the sense that it appeals to inner causes in the explanation of behavior. Two examples of mentalism in traditional psychology are (a) dispositional attributions and (b) conventional treatments of intelligence.

What is the difference between a mentalist and a magician?

The primary difference between mentalism and magic is the sort of tricks they perform. Magicians may come onstage and pull a rabbit out of a hat or saw a woman in half, but a mentalist’s goal is to make his audience believe he has psychic powers or the ability to read minds.

What do you call a boy crush?

Darling. Stud Muffin. Boo Bear. Mister Man. Baby. Sweets. Bubba. Captain.

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