Here are ten signs of intelligence than the average person, according to science.

If you’re addicted to The Factionary, it’s no wonder you’re intelligent. Or you’re not? Whatever. Yell at someone who claims to be intelligent — if they yell back, they’re not, if they ignore, they are. But if they pick up a fight, well…, they’re pretty much dumb than they thought. You may be smarter than the average person, but people seem to make you feel like you’re not as smart as they are. It’s now time you embrace your inner genius. Here are ten science-backed signs of intelligence that say you’re more intelligent than the average person. (#6. Talking to yourself?)


Related media: 12 Signs Of High Intelligence You Probably Have


#1. Curiosity

The more you learn, the smarter you get. You learn; therefore you know this one — and it’s no wonder you’re addicted to usIn a 2013 study from Goldsmiths University of London, researchers found that “intelligent people invest their time and effort in their intellect.” What this means is that they are feeding their curiosity, which adds up to cognitive growth. This isn’t just learning that’s making you smart, it’s wanting to learn more that’s making you smarter.

In a 2016 study published in the Journal of Individual Differences, researchers found a correlation between the high IQ scores of people as a child and their tendency of being curious and open to new ideas as adults. There’s also a link between high curiosity and tolerance for ambiguity — a trait that requires a sophisticated style of thinking.



#2. Openness

In a 2008 Yale study, researchers found that highly intelligent people were more open-minded to the opinions of others rather than dismissing them. Don’t confuse anyone for being fickle, though. The study also found that open-mindedness made them less likely to be manipulated once they made up their mind. (See the last in this list).



#3. Creativity

According to Dr. Katie Davis, a clinical neuropsychologist in an interview with Business Insider, creativity is a definitive sign of intelligence. It requires thinking out of the box and the ability to quickly shift from one way of thinking to another. Creativity is intelligence. Period!



#4. Messy

Intelligent people are perceived to be well-organized and tidy. Spoiler alert: not true. According to Kathleen Vohs from the University of Minnesota, the messier you are, the smarter you are. In a 2013 study she published in Psychological Science asked two interactive groups to devise creative uses for Ping-Pong balls. One group worked in a messy setting, while the other worked in a tidy setting. Researchers found that the messy group had far more tactical and creative ideas than the tidy ones. Are you a bit of a mess? Don’t worry, you’re smart.



#5. Loneliness

Nikola Tesla once said, “Be alone, that’s the secret of invention; be alone, that’s when ideas are born.”

Loneliness is a sign of inner genius. In a 2016 study published in the British Journal of Psychology, researchers found a correlation between contentedness with being alone and intelligence. Spending more time alone increases your ability to think sharper, prioritize, and plan. This could even lead to the next sign.



#6. Talking To Yourself

Like seriously? What? Yeah, you’re not going crazy, you’re smart. In a 2012 study by psychologists Paloma Mari-Beffa and Alexander Kirkham from Bangor University, they found that talking out loud to yourself improves self-control — an important form of intelligence. (More on that later). For their study, they gave participants a set of tasks and some written instructions they were either to read them silently or out loud. The loud readers performed significantly better than the silent readers. Talking out loud lets you take control over what you’re doing. Speaking of control, this brings us to the next sign.



#7. Emotional Control

Having the ability to control your emotions is an overlooked sign of intelligence. In a 2009 Yale study that offered participants reward money after an IQ test with the following conditions: receive immediately or later (for a higher amount). Participants who chose later had a higher IQ score than those who took the reward. This indicates that resisting making impulsive decisions and carefully weighing options correlates with intelligence.



#8. Hilarious

Comedians are one of the most intelligent people out there. In a 2011 study by the University of New Mexico, researchers found that comedians and funny-script cartoonists scored higher on verbal intelligence. This makes sense, having a razor-sharp wit skill of humor is not common.



#9. Playing Dumb

Like seriously? We got to be kidding, huh? Hell no! In a 2008 study by two social psychologists, David Dunning and Justin Kruger, they found that people, in general, tend to overestimate their abilities whereas intelligent people tend to find limitations in themselves. Dubbed the Dunning-Kruger effect, it simply states that people believe they’re smarter than they actually are.

Intelligent people often don’t assume they know it all, rather they question their opinions before making a judgment. This tendency makes them pretend like they know naught, which can even make them strive to learn more, making them even smarter. (See #1 in this list).

Shakespeare once said, “The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”



#10. Stubbornness (Discipline)

Uh? Which one do we mean, huh? It depends on how you define these two, but first, a hypothetical scenario. Let’s say a child is raised by two strict conservative parents, they give out tough instructions; like when to sleep, go out, come back, and even what to study in school. Yes, that kinda parenting. However, the child declines and does as he pleases. Stubborn child, huh? Don’t judge too soon.

On the flip side, this same child goes to school and is being influenced by peers to hang out with them, indulged in petty vices like drugs, gambling, and co. This same child declines their peer pressure. What do you have to say? Discipline? As it turns out, stubbornness somehow seems like discipline, and vice versa.

What’s even more?

What else do you think we missed? Let us know. 


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Written by: Nana Kwadwo, Sat, Nov 06, 2021.

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