Skip to Content

6 Telltale Signs of True Intelligence

6 Telltale Signs of True Intelligence

In this article, we will talk about six signs of intelligence.

When we think of highly intelligent people, we tend to imagine someone particularly good with numbers, who can multiply 496758 by 72 in less than ten seconds without using a calculator.

While this is certainly a mind-blowing skill many of us would love to have, the concept of intelligence goes well beyond someone’s ability with numbers.

It has to do with something else. It has to do with common sense, and with how you deal with people and situations in your everyday life.

Also, it may surprise you to know that you don’t need to be a scientist or a mathematician to be considered particularly smart.

What follows are a few signs you are more intelligent than you think.


Signs of Intelligence – N.1: You Are Highly Curious

Truly intelligent people are naturally curious. They can’t get enough of learning, they chase knowledge and genuinely enjoy learning new skills.

They often learn new things and new skills just out of curiosity, even when they know they don’t need those skills for their career or for any other purpose.

For example, think about those people who learn a new language for the sake of learning it, or those who learn technical design just because they love it, even when everyone else tells them “What’s the point of doing that?”

That’s what smart people do, craving knowledge and new experiences, despite what everyone else says.

Recommended read: How to Act and Look Confident: 9 Simple Habits That Will Make the Difference


Signs of Intelligence – N.2: You Don’t Brag About Your Intelligence

I love this point, probably because it’s one of the most important ones here — and let’s be real, who can stand people who brag all the time?

Truly smart people don’t feel the need to noisily proclaim their intelligence and their accomplishments, since, as Jessica Wildfire mentioned in an article in PS I Love You, “they aren’t interested in how they’re perceived, and they’re busy growing their minds.”


Signs of Intelligence – N.3: You Make Connections Between Different Fields

We can all become experts in a certain field after years of experience. What not everyone can do, however, is, as Steve Jobs once said, making connections between different fields.

That’s something truly smart people have in common, as they tend to be open to new experiences and ideas — which is what allows them to make those connections in the first place.

And it seems that science agrees with Jobs on this.

As Jessica Stillman mentioned in Inc, repeated studies show a correlation between the trait psychologists call openness and truly great brains.


4: You Listen Before Even Thinking About What To Say

Do you know what is one of the main things that separate intelligence from ignorance? How someone listens.

Some people are desperate to get their point across and are not even interested in knowing other people’s perspective. In fact, many people are like that, unfortunately.

Smart people, instead, know that one of the most important points of effective communication is the ability — and willingness — to understand the point of view of others.

So, before even formulating an answer to what someone is saying, they listen to them until they finish their sentence.


5: You Take Shortcuts, but Only if That Doesn’t Negatively Affect the Final Outcome

Taking shortcuts can help you optimize time and energy and basically work smart, however it’s not always possible to do it without losing something essential.

Intelligent people know when they can take shortcuts and how they can do it in the best possible way, and they do it only when it doesn’t have a negative impact on the achieved results.


6: You’re Highly Adaptable

Smart people have this flexibility not everyone else has.

They easily adapt to new situations.

As explained in an article published in Britannica, intelligence mainly depends on being able to adapt your own behaviors in order to successfully cope with your environment.

Here are two examples of people who are highly adaptable:

  • Someone who loses their job and reinvents themselves starting a business,
  • Someone who relocates, integrates into the new country by hanging out with local people, and learns the local language.

Signs of True Intelligence: Recap

To wrap up, these are six signs of intelligence:

  • Curiosity,
  • You don’t brag about your intelligence,
  • Making connections between different fields,
  • Listening before thinking about what to say,
  • Taking shortcuts — but only when you know you can do that,
  • You’re highly adaptable.

Photo by Raamin ka on Unsplash


Get access to exclusive self-improvement and relationships content, subscribe to my free newsletter here.

The Truly Charming