8 Personality Traits of Highly Intelligent People (Backed by Science)

3. They have insatiable curiosity.

Albert Einstein reportedly said, “I have no special talents, I am only passionately curious.”

Or, as Keyzurbur Alas puts it, “Intelligent people let themselves become fascinated by things others take for granted.”

Research published in 2016 suggests there’s a link between childhood intelligence and openness to experience — which encompasses intellectual curiosity — in adulthood.

Scientists followed thousands of people born in the U.K. for 50 years and learned that 11-year-olds who’d scored higher on an IQ test turned out to be more open to experience at 50.

4. They’re open-minded.

Smart people don’t close themselves off to new ideas or opportunities.Hammett writes that intelligent people are “willing to accept and consider other views with value and broad-mindedness,” and that they are “open to alternative solutions.”

Psychologists say that open-minded people — those who seek out alternate viewpoints and weigh the evidence fairly — tend to score higher on the SAT and on intelligence tests.

At the same time, smart people are careful about which ideas and perspectives they adopt.

“An intelligent mind has a strong aversion to accepting things on face value and therefore withholds belief until presented with ample evidence,” says Alas.

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