Being open to experience, cooperative, happy and having strong perceptual skills are all signs that you have a high IQ, psychological research finds.
Of these, being open to experience is a particularly strong sign…
1. Open to experience
Insatiable curiosity, an active fantasy life, a sensitivity to emotions and an appreciation of art and beauty are all linked to high IQ.
These are all aspects of the major personality trait called ‘openness to experience’.
People who are open to experience are more interested in things that are complex, new and unconventional.
Being open to experience is so powerful that it is linked to intelligence when measured almost 40 years later.
Children who scored higher on IQ tests at just 11-years-old were more open to experience when they were 50-years-old, the psychologists found.
Intelligent people are better at cooperating with others.
While personality traits like being generous and conscientious have an effect on cooperation, higher IQ is the main factor that encourages people to work well together.
People with higher intelligence use more consistent strategies and consider the consequences of their actions.
That is why people with high IQs are so essential: without them society would not work.
The finding goes against the popular idea that being intelligent somehow predisposes people to unhappiness.
The study looked at happiness in the best-known sense of feeling positive emotions and being satisfied with your life.
The results showed that people with the lowest IQ (70 – 99) were the least happy in comparison to those with the highest IQs (120 – 129).
4. Stronger perceptual skills
People with high IQs have stronger basic perceptual skills, research finds.
For example, they can tell which way objects are moving more quickly.
They are also better at blocking out background information to make their judgement.
Imagine a ball thrown at high speed — a more intelligent person can pick up its trajectory faster.
A higher IQ makes the brain faster at a fundamental level.
It helps underline that high IQ is about more than just solving puzzles or making the ‘right’ decision.
About the author
Psychologist, Jeremy Dean, PhD is the founder and author of PsyBlog. He holds a doctorate in psychology from University College London and two other advanced degrees in psychology.
He has been writing about scientific research on PsyBlog since 2004. He is also the author of the book “Making Habits, Breaking Habits” (Da Capo, 2003) and several ebooks:
- Accept Yourself: How to feel a profound sense of warmth and self-compassion
- The Anxiety Plan: 42 Strategies For Worry, Phobias, OCD and Panic
- Spark: 17 Steps That Will Boost Your Motivation For Anything
- Activate: How To Find Joy Again By Changing What You Do