It is examined, which action relevance metaphors have - a well-known, but unresolved problem in the psychological and interdisciplinary metaphor research. Modern metaphor theories define metaphors not as primary language phenomenon (language decoration), but as fundamentally cognitive structures, which determine thinking and acting. From the view of Cognitive Psychology it is postulated that metaphors are to be understood as schemas or mental models. In the theoretical part are represented and analyzed the most important theories of metaphor: from the traditional linguistic substitution and comparison theories to the modern cognitive metaphor theories. These theories are examined whether, why and how they define metaphors as a central construct in the sense of Cognitive Psychology and which conceptions they develop about the connections between metaphors and action regulation. These theories are also examined for the first time to what extent the formulated predictions of the gestalting or determining power of conceptual metaphors concerning cognitions and actions were empirically validated. This comprehensive analysis is necessary in view of growing importance of metaphors in all sciences. Since there are some qualitative studies, but no experimental examinations over the action relevance of metaphorical cognitions, the influence of conceptual metaphors on cognition and action is examined in an on-line experiment in a virtual leadership situation. Metaphorical priming is used for the first time. The findings show: Metaphorical priming determines the different cognitive representations of the situation and actions. Thus a complete experimental proof could be led of the detailed cognition-structuring effect of metaphors and their action relevance.