12 Traits of a highly intelligent person

Did you know that, according to psychologists, IQ is not a perfect measure of Intelligence? Firstly, it measures only certain aspects of Intelligence. Secondly, IQ tests are more favorable for certain groups of people while others are at a disadvantage. So what does this mean? It means that you could be secretly intelligent and not even know it. So here are some traits of a highly intelligent person that you may not be aware of.

12 Traits of a highly intelligent person
12 Traits of a highly intelligent person

They are empathetic

Bet you never thought of empathy as a trait of a highly intelligent person? But it is. Empathy means you are able to see from another person’s perspective. It also requires you to be attuned to subtle cues in body language and facial expressions. Without a certain level of intelligence, none of these are possible.

Did you know that there is a form of intelligence called emotional intelligence? Empathy is a very important part of it. People who are emotionally intelligent are able to understand their own emotions and express them in healthy ways.


You crack jokes.

Having a great sense of humor requires you to think outside the box – see connections that no one else sees. This requires intelligence. That’s why having a great sense of humor is a trait of a highly intelligent person.  People who have a great sense of humor have shown to have higher IQ numbers and also better language and communication skills.

You are a night owl

According to ‘Personality and individual differences articles’ people with higher intelligence tend to stay up late at night. They are also known to perform better in IQ tests. But their academic performance is about 8% less than the early bird. So keep in mind that higher academic performance does not always mean higher intelligence. On the other hand, they might be right about early birds being more productive.

From an evolutionary standpoint, human beings have always followed the circadian rhythms. That is, they wake up with the sun and fall asleep with the sun. It is believed that night owls who do not follow this pattern may be exhibiting a  form of evolution.

They worry too much

Traits of a highly intelligent person - You worry too much
You worry too much

Highly intelligent people are good at analyzing things and figuring out every single thing that can go wrong. As a result, you may find yourself constantly worrying.

A study done using 126 undergraduates found that people who spend more time worrying have high levels of verbal intelligence. This means they were better at analyzing as well as reading and writing.

However, sometimes highly intelligent people worry very little. This happens when they are confident and secure about their problem-solving skills and abilities. So if you worry too much, building your confidence may be all you need to get rid of your anxiety.

You have a thirst for knowledge

Among all the traits of a highly intelligent person, curiosity is very common. It is generally regarded that the more curious a person is, the more intelligent she is. So if you are one of those people who like to read books, watch documentaries, browse YouTube searching for knowledge, you may be secretly intelligent.


Another thing that comes with curiosity is you dive deep into an issue. You always question why things are the way they are. And if you don’t like it, you try to find ways to change it. You are not one of those people who just accept that it’s the way things are. You want to know why.

You struggle when it comes to romance

Do you struggle to find the perfect romantic partner? Do your friends and family tell you to not be so picky? This is also linked to your intelligence. People who know exactly what they are looking for are less likely to pick someone based on looks or other superficial criteria. This may lead to the feeling that you have less experience in the romance department. However, knowing what you want is one of the traits of a highly intelligent person. It is a good trait, since not everyone can tolerate being with a highly intelligent person.

You procrastinate

Procrastination is linked to lack of motivation, but why is it one of the traits of a highly  intelligent person? This is because highly intelligent people tend to overthink. Instead of focusing on the goal, they think about the path that they need to take. They may even visualize all the obstacles that could potentially come their way. All this overthinking is sometimes exhausting and discouraging. As a result, they end up procrastinating.

You are messy


Traits of a highly intelligent person - You are messy
You are messy

Do you bother to make the bed or keep the table tidy? If not, you may be one of those secretly intelligent people. Katherine Vohs of the University of Minnesota, did a study in which people were divided into two groups. Both groups were asked to come up with creative ways to use ping pong balls. People in one group were given this task in a messy room, while the other group received the task in a neat and clean room.

Both groups generated about the same number of ideas. However, the more innovative ideas came from the people in the messy room. So if you are a messy person, it is highly likely that you too can come up with innovative ideas.


You manage your emotions well

Being able to manage emotions well is a key component of emotional intelligence. When you are emotionally intelligent, you can identify complex emotions. You are aware of how it will affect your behavior and choices. This helps you exercise self-restraint and delay expressing your emotions until an appropriate time. This way you not only get things done but also minimize conflict.

They are open-minded.

Highly intelligent people don’t close off to new ideas and opinions. They listen carefully and evaluate them. At the same time, they do not accept it at face value. It’s only after careful consideration and understanding, that they accept a new concept.

They know what they don’t know.

Have you ever met someone who never admits that he doesn’t know something? Even when he doesn’t know, he pretends to know the subjects and talks as if he knows everything. Rest assured that it is not a trait of a highly intelligent person. Highly intelligent people are well aware of what they know and what they don’t know.

A study done by Justin Kruger and David Dunnings  showed that less intelligent people tend to overestimate their cognitive capabilities. In a similar study, people in the lowest quartile of a LSAT test overestimated the number of right answers they provided by 50 percent. So it turns out that knowing what you don’t know is actually a trait of a highly intelligent person.


They love to be alone.

According to a 2016 study paper, highly intelligent people feel less satisfied after social interactions. They have few friends that they value and cherish. These people would rather spend their time introspecting and following their own interests. This may be because they like to dive deep into things instead of meaningless small talk.


Pin it

12 Traits of a highly intelligent person
Traits of a highly intelligent person

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *