The saying "great minds think alone" is probably true after all!
Do you love canceling plans and staying home? Do you find you feel more comfortable by yourself than with other people? Well, science hints that if this is the case, you may have a higher intellect!
For a lot of us, connecting with friends and family can give us immense joy. A good talk with a best friend will uplift our mood in a heartbeat. But studies are now suggesting that extremely smart people enjoy alone-time more than regular socializing. The more you enjoy your "me-time," the higher your IQ might be!
A study published in The British Journal of Psychology surveyed 15,000 people between the ages of 18 and 28 years old. The study focused on two parameters: the place where the interviewee lived (urban or rural) and their life contentment with friendship.
The results showed most people were happy staying in less densely populated areas and enjoyed regular socializing. But a subset of the participants showed a different outcome. These people had a higher intellect and were less happy with social interactions.
So why were these brainiacs unhappy with socialization? Scientists have come up with some possible explanations:
The Savannah Theory of Evolution
This theory states that "the way we enjoy life is based on our ancestors’ experiences." Our ancestors were hunter-gathers who lived in groups as large as 150 members for survival. That explains why most of us feel unhappy in an isolated lifestyle and are called "social animals."
But the intellectuals usually don't follow this norm. It is proven that people with higher IQ have a greater capability of adapting to unusual environments, thus not necessarily needing a large group for survival.
“In general, more intelligent individuals are more likely to have ‘unnatural’ preferences and values that our ancestors did not have,” said researcher Satoshi Kanazawa of the Singapore Management University.
It is thought that highly intelligent people have a rich inner life and prefer alone-time to forge greater and complex ideas. Social interactions can become a cause of distraction, explaining why they're so willing to let go of those parties and gatherings!
The Theory of Aspiration
It is only natural to expect that brilliant people have higher life goals and aspirations. To focus on these long-term goals, one needs uninterrupted time with oneself, which becomes hard when you spend most of your time hanging out with others.
It is important to remember that these research findings may not be accurate for every introvert or outgoing person. A social butterfly can be highly intelligent, too.
So, if you are someone who spends a lot of alone time indulging in good reads or solving complex problems, don't assume that you're just a loner. The chances are high that you are the genius of your group!
What do you think of this research? Are you the lone wolf? Let it all out in the comments below!