More Intelligent Than You Think and Dumber Than You Look – 5 Reasons Why IQ Isn’t Everything

More Intelligent Than You Think and Dumber Than You Look

More Intelligent Than You Think and Dumber Than You Look

Here are 5 quick reasons why I can safely assume that you are more intelligent than you think.

1. Since 1918, the average intelligence (IQ) of people in Western countries has risen above 20 points, and many non-western countries have also had dramatic average IQ increases.

So I already know that it is quite likely that you have a higher IQ than your parents and very likely to have a IQ higher than your grandparents.

2. I can safely assume that anyone who has been following my work up to this point, or who is interested in self development in general has at the very least, an average IQ.

3. To be successful and happy in over 90% of the possible career paths you could take in life, you only need to have an average IQ.

4. Above average IQ would rarely be important when it comes to maintaining close relationships and friendships. I don’t often see friends and intimate partners specifically challenging each other in areas of planning, problem solving, working memory, perceptual speed and so on.

Sure, people play games that test these things on occasion, but they are generally not what a great relationship is based on.

5. Greatness can not be unlocked with IQ. Yes, it plays a part, that’s why you need to have at least average range intelligence to achieve most things, but it never has and never will be the true key to success.

If IQ was the key, then you’d already be extremely successful, because I know you have the IQ for it.

Here’s something else that is interesting.

In the same amount of time (since 1918) and especially over the last 15-20 years, something else has been occurring.

If people in general have become so much more intelligent (and I do believe this to be true), why has depression, anxiety, stress, burnout, bullying and relationship breakdown sky-rocketed?

Depression has increased tenfold since 1918, it will be the second largest health problem on the planet by 2020 and over 50% of workers claim to be suffering from high to very high stress.

What’s going on here?

Every Generation Is Becoming Dumber

Recently, I was at the movies and it was quite an annoying experience. I was visiting an area where residents generally have a very good standard of living and good educational opportunities.

During the movie, there was a bunch of girls, about 13 years old, and for the entire movie, they did not once stop talking, loudly bantering and playing with their phones.

They were repeatedly shooshed and told to be quiet by several different people throughout and they never stopped.

At first, it’s easy to assume that they’re simply rude, entitlement-filled brats. Sure, that’s true, but that answer alone is too simple.

There has to be more to it!

A lot of social pressure was repeatedly put on them to stop and they continued on being loud, obnoxious and oblivious to the needs of others for over 2 hours. Which made me realize…

It’s not so much about that they didn’t want to shut up…

It’s that they CAN’T SHUT UP!

These otherwise intelligent teens are actually socially retarded. It’s like a type of brain damage, or to be kinder, brain underdevelopment. They are more often than not, completely at the mercy of their impulses.

When the phone makes a sound, it must be looked it, when one of them talks, the others must respond, and when one does something stupid, the others must do it too.

These teens, and the many others just like them, are destined for a life of shallow, impulse-driven relationship-straining living.


These kids are:


Intelligent and irritating.

Deductive and depressive.

Analytical and anxious.


For all their intelligence, they remain at the mercy of their environmental triggers and the feelings produced.

Two Types Of Intelligence

There has to be more than one kind of intelligence. In fact there are many types. However there are two in particular that you need to understand. One is the traditional standard type of intelligence, measured as IQ. This is what was thought to be the key to success for many years and these tests measure your computational abilities. Reading, writing, arithmetic, planning, problem solving, processing speed, memory and so on.

The second kind is emotional intelligence. This is about your ability to control, understand and manipulate the emotions of yourself and others. It explores things like self and social awareness, empathy, relationship management and influence.

Without the ability to control and understand your emotions and those of others, you will succumb to the pressures of life. Depression, anxiety and anger is just around the corner for the emotionally unintelligent. This is the world we are living in.

The girls at the movie had no idea just how disrespectful their behaviour was. They didn’t have the social awareness or the empathy or the ability to calm themselves enough to simply shut up and watch the movie.

We are driven by instinct and emotion, not IQ. All experiences are first processed through the instinctive and impulsive part of the brain (mainly the brain stem and cerebellum), than the emotional and social parts (the mid brain) and then finally, if the message gets there, the thinking IQ based parts (neocortex) of the brain.

IQ is like a computer, but without the right programming, the computer, no matter how powerful, will be useless. The right emotional skills and states allow you to operate at full capacity and the wrong emotions cause you to crash and burn out!

Most people have the computational abilities and skills, what they don’t have, is the emotional programming.

Emotions are what lead to greatness. You have to be regularly in the right emotional state in order to be:










and so on. These are the day in and day out tools of success and greatness. All these emotional states can be actively engaged and trained.

 Begin at the Beginning – 5 Simple Introductory Steps to Emotional Intelligence Building

If I could only choose one emotional state to teach someone that would give them the biggest chance of success and happiness, it would have to be calmness. From a foundation of calmness, all other positive emotions can be easily generated.

Being calm allows you to feel like you have more time to make decisions. Therefore it reduces impulsiveness because you actually take the time to think things through. The opposite is of course panic and we all know decisions made when panicked are disastrous. When you’re calm you naturally breathe deeper, which allows more oxygen to get to the brain and especially the thinking part of the brain (the frontal lobes) and this allows you to focus more easily. That focus could be on a task, or on a person. Focus is also crucial, and focusing on one thing as opposed to trying to focus on many things is the key.

5 Steps to Calmness

1. Remove all distractions. This often means turn off your phone and internet (depending on the task of course).

2. Sit or stand tall. This opens up the diaphragm to allow for more oxygen to enter.

3. Breath deeply and keep a regular deep rhythm.

4. Focus your attention on one thing only. Whether that is writing your report or listening closely to the person you are speaking to.

5. Whenever your attention wanes, encourage yourself by briefly repeating a simple mantra a few times (e.g. calm and focused, calm and focused, calm and focused) and cycle back to step two.


Have fun and remember, you can be intelligent and smart. This will allow you to become truly successful. And by all means, teach this stuff to kids, they’re going to need it even more than adults do.


* Most statistics cited are from Daniel Goleman’s books, Emotional Intelligence and Social Intelligence.

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