The Habits of Smart People

When asked if they would rather be smart or dumb, surely everyone would answer smart! If you’re looking to improve your mental capabilities you can start by following in the footsteps of some of the smartest people in the world.

A person’s Intelligence Quotient indicates their mental abilities relative to others of approximately the same age.

  • Average IQ= 100
  • Above Average=115
  • Genius= 140
  • Extraordinary Genius=160

The Good Habits

They are persistent

Smart people don’t let failure stop them.

  • Albert Einstein (IQ=160) did not speak until he was 4
  • Bill Gates’ (IQ=160) first business failed
  • Thomas Edison (IQ=145) tried to make a lightbulb over 1,000 times
  • Benjamin Franklin (IQ=160) dropped out of school at age 10
  • Ludwig Van Beethoven (IQ=165) was told he would never succeed

They set goals

Students were given 4 weeks to accomplish a goal…

  • Students without written goals—>accomplish 43% of goals
  • Students with written goals—>accomplish 64% of goals
  • Students who share their goals with friends–> accomplish 76% of goals

They are avid readers

The benefits of reading include…

  • Increases verbal skills
  • Helps articulate thoughts
  • Enhances problem solving skills
  • Improved memory
  • Increases concentration
  • Improves writing skills
  • Expands vocabulary

Just 15 minutes of reading a day exposes you to over 1,000,000 words a year.

They are self-disciplined

IQ level is a good indicator of rates of virginity amongst adolescents.

  • Teens with IQ 130
  • Every additional IQ point increases odds of virginity 2.7% for males/ 1.7% for females

87% of all undergrads students have had sex. Undergrads at top schools that have had sex:

  • Harvard= 59%
  • Princeton=56%
  • MIT=51%

This reflects a desire to safeguard educational and occupational plans by avoiding risk associated with adolescent sex.

They think about thinking

  • Metacognition is the self-awareness of one’s own knowledge, and affects critical thinking skills.
  • Cognitive skills include comparing, analyzing, and inferring
  • Metacognitive skills allow individuals to realize the best way to utilize their cognitive skills.

Being smart obviously has its’ advantages, but there can be a downside…

The Bad Habits of Smart People

They tend to drink

  • Studies have shown that intelligent children are more likely to drink as adults, compared to their peers.
  • Adults with childhood IQ
  • Adults with childhood IQ > 125 engage in binge drinking once every other month.

They are at a greater risk for drug use

  • Boys with IQs > 107 were 2x more likely to use illegal drugs during adulthood than peers
  • Girls with IQs > 107 were 3x more likely to use illegal drugs during adulthood

They are night owls

Effects of sleep deprivation:

  • Increases risk of heart disease
  • Increases risk of obesity
  • 3x more likely to suffer from depression
  • Impairs judgement

They are anxious

In a 2012 study patients with generic anxiety disorder exhibited higher IQ scores than healthy volunteers. Although experts speculate worrisome people are more equipped to for see troublesome situations, anxiety has clear consequences.

Chronic anxiety can lead to:

  • Smoking
  • Depression
  • Neuroticism

If you’re looking to improve your success at home, school, or work, you can start by working the positive habits of smart people into your daily routine. Remember, while extreme intelligence has some negative associations, exhibiting these traits won’t make you smarter!