Why does it always seem like super-intelligent people are loners? If not loners, then why do they have small circles of friends that rarely expand? Is it because people are intimidated by them? Or perhaps they lack social skills? Let’s find out.
Welcome to Snapreads! Today, we’re bringing you 7 reasons why intelligent people have fewer friends. Let’s get started!
by Brene Brown
⏱ 15 minutes reading time
🎧 Audio version available
They Don’t Have FOMO
FOMO is the fear of missing out, and it’s one thing that intelligent people are lucky enough to lack. Often, people with high IQs don’t take that much interest in materialistic things. They’re quite content to do their own thing. Pointless conversations, faking interest, trying to keep up with the latest trends and what everyone is up to these are all things that they don’t fear missing out on.
In fact, smart people tend to prefer spending time alone to make better use of their time and learn new things—their brains don’t have time for meaningless chatter.
They’re More Focused on Long-Term Objectives
Many majorly successful people are introverts. Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, even comedian Will Ferrell was once a shy introvert. These celebrities don’t care so much about socializing but more about their goals. Instant gratification and temporary social highs are merely a delay to them.
Smart people are driven by a deep-seated desire to create something much larger than themselves. If they have the option of going out on a Friday night with a group of friends or staying home and working towards their goal, chances are that they’re going with the latter. It’s not that they don’t value friendship, they appreciate it deeply, but they don’t make it a priority. They would prefer to meet with a few fellow friends to share ideas than go to a rowdy party.
They Know Their Worth
It’s surprisingly easy to cut ties with a person who mistreats you when you know your worth.
People pursue meaningless friendships and relationships for a plethora of reasons, but one of them is that they get some sort of gratification from having a long list of contacts on their phones and from receiving attention on social media.
Intelligent people have already skipped through that phase of constantly needing to prove their worth. Most times, they’re already happy with themselves and, confident in their numbered relationships. In addition, they don’t rely on others to validate their worth. All the support they need or want comes from within and from, the few friends they have.
They Already Know Who Their Real Friends Are
You can be sure that intelligent people have already worked out who their real friends in life are. Smart people are also prone to letting in people who think the same as them, who share the same values, and who are in relative fields with similar interests. And when they’re confident in their relationships, they don’t really need to make any new ones.
They’ll let someone new in their lives if someone proves to be incredibly compatible with them. And even then, they don’t let their guard down and are ready to drop that friend should they prove to be toxic.
People with high IQ just prefer to keep the company of a few numbered, worthy people. This is a scientific fact. Here’s the study to prove it. Psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa from the London School of Economics looked at the happiness levels of a staggering 15,000 people with various IQ levels on two different occasions.
First when they were socializing with a group of friends, and second, when they were alone.
The mind-blowing results? People with low to average IQ reported higher levels of happiness when they were spending time with their friends. But those who with higher IQ levels experienced greater happiness when they were alone.
They Don’t Like Drama
Intelligent people don’t care for drama, and you will not likely find them involved in any. They already have so many things and goals occupying their minds and their time of the day. With a plate that full, they understand how much time drama takes up and how much stress it exposes them to.
People with deep insecurities and empty lives are often the ones to initiate drama. All the constant social media posts, backstabbing, friends stealing each other’s partners, and fighting derive from low self-esteem.
Intelligent people would honestly rather open a book or watch a movie. The phenomenon of preferring to stay alone or with a small group of people they trust is backed by science, not just personal preference.
Satoshi Kanazawa, the researcher mentioned earlier, and Normal P. Li joined forces to examine what is called the “Savannah Theory” of happiness.
Also called the “Evolutionary Legacy Hypothesis” and the “Mismatched Hypothesis,” The Savannah Theory claims that people react to their circumstances the same as their ancestors did, having “evolved psychologically” based on their needs back in the old days when humans lived on the savannah.
These researchers analyzed data from previous interviews conducted by the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health in order to find a correlation, between where each of their 15,197 subjects lived and their satisfaction and happiness in their own life. The subjects either lived in highly populated urban areas or rural towns. And what do you know?, Happier people lived in populations with less density. Fewer people, less drama.
Being picky isn’t a bad thing. In fact, a lot of people wish they could be pickier about who they let into their lives.
Intelligent people don’t let people into their lives who could hold back their goals and lessen their intelligence. Whom they spend time with influences the person they become, and those people can elevate them as much as they can bring them down. Smart people not only are more self-aware but also can see through people’s “try hard” personas. Motivational Speaker Jim Rohn says, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
They Listen More Than They Talk
At the end of the day, it comes down to this! One of the ultimate reasons why intelligent people have fewer friends is the simple fact that they tend to listen more than they like to talk. In a group of friends, you’ll find the introverted genius sitting back, observing those around them, listening, and trying to understand their thinking.
That means they’re not likely to get involved in meaningless discussions and, drama. The reason they listen is that they know they can benefit more from observation.
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