How To Get A Genius IQ: 20 Tips From Geniuses
Asking some intellectuals about their IQ is similar to regular gym-goers asking how much they can bench press.
But is it possible to increase your IQ?
The short answer is, not really.
That doesn't mean, however, that you can't improve your mental performance, or even your IQ by a few points by applying some of the methods we list below.
We have collated quotes from famous geniuses, as well as some other methods to make sure that you are at your most productive.
An aim for those with high IQ's is to join a high IQ society, such as Mensa. We have another article talking about how you can join Mensa you should consider checking out.
IQ definitionIQ is short for intelligence quotient. It is assessed using standardized tests. Both the definition of intelligence and the best way to test it have been discussed and have evolved over the past decades.
In 1994, Gottfredson came to the definition that “intelligence is a very general mental capability that, among other things, involves the ability to reason, plan, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, learn quickly and learn from experience.
It is not merely book learning, a narrow academic skill, or test-taking smarts.
Rather, it reflects a broader and deeper capability for comprehending our surroundings - ‘catching on,’ ‘making sense’ of things, or ‘figuring out’ what to do.
In 2007, Flynn developed a similar definition that might be a bit clearer, describing intelligence as “mental acuity (ability to provide on-the-spot solutions to new problems); habits of mind (patterned ways of thinking”; attitudes (foundation for acquiring habits of mind); knowledge”.
This intelligence is relatively stable over the life span.
To measure intelligence, people get tested on multiple aspects including their vocabulary, and relations among words, as well as sequence progressions of numbers.
Many of the tasks involved test short-term and working memory, needed to for example represent a list of digits.
Furthermore, the speed of processing is tested as well as the ability to visualize transformations of shapes.
IQ testing has been criticized for being artificial, intimidating and potentially influenced by external factors such as culture and language.
However, intelligence tests do work and are strong predictors of future life outcomes, including, but not limited to educational achievement, job performance, income, health, and longevity.
When speaking about intelligence, we refer to the general intelligence factor, commonly known as g. G is correlated to the factors contributing to intelligence, such as visual processing and processing speed.
As such, these factors do not exist in isolation.
What this means in practical terms is that performing well on one task is often associated with performing well on another different task.
IQ is highly heritable.
When referring to heritability, what is meant by that is the proportion of population variance attributed to genetic influence which you can think of as genetic variance divided by observed variance.
Usually, twin and adoption studies are used to investigate the heritability of IQ as well as other genetic influences.
It is important to consider that when passing on their genes, parents are in most cases also passing on an environment.
Genetic factors are not to be seen as acting in complete isolation of socialization or exposure to education.
Average IQ by ageThe average IQ lies between 90 - 100. While IQ has been found to be relatively stable over the lifespan, the factors that are correlated with the general intelligence factor do fluctuate.
Generally, there is a rise in the factors from birth to the age of 25.
Afterwards, there is a slow decline until old age.
This statistic is influenced by multiple factors.
Indeed, IQ has been shown to on average predict the lifespan of an individual, i.e. having a higher IQ makes you more likely to live longer.
Why this is the case and what other factors play a role is part of ongoing research.
Genius level IQThe definition of 'genius' depends on the context.
Some people speak of geniuses when talking about creative minds while others will mainly think of scientific accomplishments.
When thinking about the definition of a genius in terms of high IQ, we usually think in terms of an IQ of approximately 140-150.
It might also be useful to have a look at the requirements for the largest and oldest high IQ society, Mensa.
To become a member of Mensa, you need an IQ in the top 2%. Importantly, being a genius at something does not necessarily mean having a high IQ.
Highest IQ in the worldThe highest IQ in the world, as of right now, is claimed to be the test score of Ainan Celeste Cawley who reached 263.
This result is not only extremely high, but it was also obtained at a comparatively young age by Ainan who was only born in 1999.
To put things into perspective, Albert Einstein had an IQ of ca. 160-190 and
Stephen Hawking had an IQ of approximately 160.
Importantly, having a high IQ is not necessarily the same as ‘being smart’ as in accumulating lots of knowledge.
While these two things often go hand in hand, they are very different in their definition.
Having an average to slightly superior IQ will allow you to learn and develop skills that will make you ‘smart’ in terms of the definition that is commonly used when referring to ‘intelligent’ people.
How to increase IQAs of right now, researchers have not yet found a way to increase IQ, especially on an individual level.
In the video below, Jordan Peterson, a Psychology Professor, and Martin Daly, Professor for Evolutionary Psychology, have a discussion about IQ and what influences it.
It demonstrates the key points known about increasing IQ until now.
We will go into a little more detail afterwards.
The Flynn effect that is mentioned in the discussion, describes a rise in the average IQ across the past decades.
One reason for that effect is that the living situations for most people in the countries where these tests took place have improved.
Education has offered information in critical developmental periods, and on average people had the chance to exercise and to eat properly.
Others have argued that intelligence tests test skills and a cultural mindset rather than intelligence.
Linked to this idea it the thought that people might have gotten used to the format of the test and thus the scores increased over the years.
Both the health factors, including neonatal care, nutrition, exercise etc. as well as the socio-cultural factors have been experienced on average by the whole of society.
Thus, these socio-economic factors impact society as a whole and the average IQ, rather than the individual differences in IQ.
A different point of view would be to see think of the Flynn effect as highlighting what factors are necessary for people to reach their full potential, rather than indicating how to raise IQ above what is naturally possible when experiencing the right circumstances.
The study that Jordan Peterson is referencing highlights that a proportionally greater change in socio-economic conditions needs to occur for a proportionally smaller increase in IQ.
Standard deviations are used in statistics to illustrate and quantify the amount of variation of a data set.
Importantly, these studies make use of external factors influencing the individual's and society's environment, rather than individual ones.
In fact, websites offering ‘brain training’ to improve IQ as a whole have not found to be successful.
Similarly, video gaming, while increasing scores on some aspects of spatial IQ, does not generalize to the g factor, or intelligence.
So what can you take from this?
Ensuring the body, and in particular, the brain gets the nutrients it needs, as well as being experienced with the test-taking format of the IQ test should be helpful in letting you perform as well as you can.
While you might not be able to increase your IQ, there are habits, ways of thinking and learning techniques that could bring you closer to what you would personally define as being a genius.
1. Stephen Hawking: “Look up at the stars.”
- Be curious and open to knowledge.
- Be confident when pursuing your ideas.
- Get started on what you want to achieve, no matter how big or small the task is
- Living by this motto, Francesco Cirillo has developed the Pomodoro technique. If you are struggling with the getting started on a task, this technique might be for you.
The Pomodoro technique is a study technique that got its name from the Pomodoro shaped kitchen timer that he used to measure the 25 min spent on each task. This technique is mainly used by people who struggle with procrastination and low focus and concentration on a task.
The idea behind the technique is that you can break down a task that seems overwhelming and unmanageable. By doing so, the separate chunks suddenly do not feel so overwhelming anymore.
Additionally, you will use a time management schedule and a specific routine to help you stick to the task you are doing and to do it as efficiently as possible. The timer is used to measure 25 min slots in which you focus on one task only.
Each Pomodoro cycle is made up of four of such 'Pomodoros'. Between each Pomodoro, you can take a short break and then a longer break between the cycles.
- Once you get started, you will find that there is, even more, to achieve and explore.
- This is linked to the concept of the flow state, outlined below.
- Csíkszentmihályi has coined the concept of flow. This flow state refers to a state of calm and focus, allowing for high performance in a fairly relaxed setting.
The task or action performed itself should be fulfilling. At the same time, people seek to experience flow as it proves to be a productive phase in the sense that the outcome, be it in sports or academics, fulfils the goal you will have set yourself.
If you are finding it difficult to access the flow, the good news is that it is not exclusive to professional musicians and athletes. In fact, everybody can be in the flow.
There a six simple steps that are likely to help you enter the flow state and they are further outlined in the respective blog post “Flow State: 6 ways to get in The Zone and stay there” - feel free to have a read.
- Don’t just focus on what you know but be open to what others can teach you. Especially, when you don’t expect to learn something.
- Practice, practice, practice.
- Basically, there is more to being a genius than the performance, be it in academics or in arts.
- Your IQ on its own will not determine the outcome.
12. Henry David Thoreau: “What is called genius is the abundance of life and health.”
- In order to perform to high standards, remember to take breaks between working on what you want to achieve.
- Similarly, make sure to get enough exercise. Being active has been shown to be helpful in preventing a decline in IQ over time.
14. Louis H. Wilson: “True genius lies not in doing the extraordinary things, but in doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.”
16. Benjamin Franklin: “Genius without education is like silver in the mine.” >
- Learning is an ongoing process. Being good at something will require ongoing practice and learning.
- Explaining something in terms that a child could explain will prove how familiar you are with a theory or a concept. It will also enhance your own learning.
19. C. W. Ceran: “Genius is the ability to reduce the complicated to the simple.” 20. Isaac Newton: “Genius is patience.”
- It will take time to develop a skill.
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Or, you can check out our related articles:
17 Ways Meditation Can Make You More Productive
Get Things Done: The Ultimate Guide To GTD
The Ultimate Guide To Becoming A Morning Person
If you have any tips that help you work smarter not harder, let us know in the comments below.
If you found this article useful, please share it with your friends so that they too can improve their IQ.
- Acton, A. (2017, August 17). 10 Pieces of Killer Advice From Famous Creative Geniuses. Retrieved 21 February 2019, from https://www.inc.com/annabel-acton/10-pieces-of-killer-advice-from-famous-creative-ge.html
- Flynn, J. (2007). What Is Intelligence?: Beyond the Flynn Effect. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511605253
- Gottfredson, L. S. (1997). Mainstream science on intelligence: An editorial with 52 signatories, history, and bibliography. Intelligence, 24(1), 13-23. doi.org/10.1016/S0160-2896(97)90011-8
- Mensa International. (2019). In Wikipedia. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mensa_International&oldid=881543784
- Stillman, J. (2017, October 26). 3 Geniuses' Best Tips to Accelerate Learning. Retrieved 21 February 2019, from https://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/3-geniuses-best-tips-to-accelerate-learning.html
- Specktor, B. (n.d.). 7 Pieces of Life Advice Geniuses Tell Their Kids. Retrieved 21 February 2019, from https://www.rd.com/culture/advice-from-geniuses/
- The 5 Factors of Intelligence Over the Lifespan. (2010, May 28). Retrieved 21 February 2019, from https://www.highiqpro.com/iq-cognitive-health-aging/the-5-factors-of-intelligence-over-the-lifespan
- The Official Website Of British Mensa - The High IQ Society. (n.d.). Retrieved 19 February 2019, from https://www.mensa.org.uk/
- The Twinstitute - Series 1: 6. Learn a Language. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m0002fms/the-twinstitute-series-1-6-learn-a-language