10 Weird Things That Mean You’re Smarter Than Most People

When you think about the qualities of a very smart person, you probably think of the popular stereotypes, whether you mean to or not: someone who is put together, mature, a little nerdy, maybe kind of quiet or a little awkward, someone who speaks eloquently and is a bit more sophisticated. Hey, we can’t help it – certain stereotypes were born for a reason, it’s just that they don’t refer to literally everyone in a category. We’ve all had that moment where we find out someone unexpected is highly intelligent and we sit back, surprised, and think, “wow, never would have guessed it.”

But maybe it’s time to stop assuming one has to look and act a certain way in order to be a smart person. As the scientific studies below show, there are some unexpected personality traits and qualities that could mean someone is really intelligent, and a lot of people would probably find them pretty shocking. If you do any of the below things, you might be smarter than some people you know! Or just smarter than you thought, which is kind of awesome. Signs of intelligence can be a lot different than what you would think, and research backs that up. Here are some weird things that mean you’re smart:


You Curse

A recent study from Marist College in New York delivered some surprising results: people who have a big vocabulary of curse words tend to have a bigger and greater vocabulary overall, an indicator of intelligence. So, as it turns out, cursing doesn't automatically mean you're stupid, which is a stereotype that has permeated society for a long time. Researchers stated, "Speakers who use taboo words understand their general expressive content as well as nuanced distinctions that must be drawn to use slurs appropriately. The ability to make nuanced distinctions indicates the presence of more rather than less linguistic knowledge, as implied by the POV [Poverty of Vocabulary] view."

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You're Lazy

Logically, it seems that lazy people aren't smart - intelligence is often linked to people who work hard and work a lot. But, as it turns out, research from the journal of Health Psychology supports the theory that smart people actually spend more time being lazy. It actually makes sense when you read further into it: people with a higher IQ get bored less easily, so they spend their time thinking instead of doing; meanwhile, people who are active are less lazy because physical activity is what stimulates their mind.

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You Don't Have A Lot Of Friends

If you have a close group of friends and you like it that way, it could be a sign that you're really smart. a study in the British Journal of Psychology found that if you're highly intelligent, talking to your friends all the time can make you unhappy. The theory behind this is a little complicated: the study found that people of today are still made happy by the things our early ancestors enjoyed in the hunter-gatherer lifestyle, and one thing that made them happy was being with with a lot of people. But this isn't try for intelligent people, and they aren't exactly sure why, but they think it's because pursuing something other than social interaction is what makes smarter people happier.

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You Have A Dark Sense Of Humor

If you tend to laugh at dark things that others would think are a little disturbing, then it could mean that you're really intelligent. One study from the journal of Cognitive Processing found this out during research. The study had participants rate whether they understood jokes and thought they were good, and the people who appreciated the dark humor jokes also scored higher on both verbal and nonverbal intelligence. Researchers say the reason for this is that it takes both cognitive and emotional skills to really understand jokes, especially disturbing ones. So, taking jokes too seriously? Guess you're not as smart (according to this study, at least.)

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Trashy Movies Are Your Favorite

Trashy movies are often associated with being ditzy and silly, but loving them could be a trait of really smart people, according to recent research. The study found that people who enjoy trashy movies have "a positive, transgressive deviance from the cinematic mainstream." Basically, people who enjoy watching trashy movies are able to realize they aren't great, but just a form of enjoyment not meant to be taken seriously. The study also found that those that like trashy movies also like art cinema. One of the researchers said, “We are dealing here with an audience with above-average education, which one could describe as ‘cultural omnivores. Such viewers are interested in a broad spectrum of art and media across the traditional boundaries of high and popular culture."

Source: iStock

You're Messy

The next time you get yelled at for being too messy, show your parents this study from the University of Minnesota, which says that messiness is often linked to intelligence. It's also linked to being more creative, which makes sense when you think about it.

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You Have Trouble Sleeping

Staying up late is more associated with being smart than waking up early, which seems kind of backwards. Studies have shown this several times, and a lot of very smart people have also discussed how they happen to be night owls.

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You Worry A Lot

Worrying a lot isn't just about being anxious - a study from Lakehead University in Ontario found that worrying and intelligence are linked. Overthinking something, stressing out over it for hours or days, is actually training your brain to respond better the next time you have the inclination to be anxious.

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You're Sarcastic

Sarcasm isn't just a great way to be funny (in my opinion), it's also a sign that you're smart. One study found that the ability to understand sarcasm comes from a sequence of complex cognitive skills. It's about understanding the mental state of people, not just cracking jokes. So, understanding someone's state of mind and emotions makes people more sarcastic, and that is also linked to higher intelligence. Sarcasm also works the brain more than being sincere, which is also linked with being smart.

Source: iStock

You Talk To Your Dog

If you love having long conversations with your pet, then good news: you're probably pretty smart. Research has shown that talking to your pets is a sign of intelligence and imagination, so people who do it are creative and also really smart.

Source: iStock

Which one of these qualities do you have? Do you think you’re a smart person? Let us know in the comments.

You can follow the author, Jessica Booth, on Twitter or Instagram.

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