The Real Measure of Intelligence (And Who Ends Up Being a Winner in The End) 66

the real measure of intelligence

For me, the real measure of intelligence is a bit different from what we’ve been told by society and authorities.

I think that contemplating on life is essential for our personal development and spiritual growth.
And it’s a shame that so few do it.

I also don’t think intelligence or being smart can – in any way – be connected to school, passing random tests, being considered a professional in a job where you basically do what a machine can do too, or graduating university.

No. All these are skills too, just bad ones – the skill of answering society’s expectations, doing exactly what you’re told to do and nothing else, following the rules others have set and never asking whether they are the right ones.

And most people today have mastered these skills.

Don’t get me wrong. They have actually worked hard for that, have completed a large amount of work in a short time, and so on.
But that never really engaged their brains.

For me, being smart means other things.

The real intelligence lies in the deep realizations one comes to – like that change is the only permanent thing, that the past must be left there and accepted, that we never really own anything, that we’re here just for a brief period of time, that every thought of ours goes in the universe in the form of energy, connects with others with the same vibration and becomes reality, that peace of mind is the highest happiness, and so much more.

The real intelligence is in ideas – not in thinking and talking about other people and events, but about ideas. Giving birth to them, brainstorming, expanding them, and eventually working hard on turning them into reality.

The real intelligence can be found in little daily situations – when a man knows the person in front of him is not being honest, but goes beyond his own ego, is alright with that, slowly leaves the anger behind, and chooses to accept the person for who he is and to enjoy his company while he’s able to do it.
When a man loses a loved one, but realizes so deeply that he was happy enough to have spent this time with him and can only celebrate the life they’ve lived together.

Intelligent are those who say no to instant gratification in whatever form it comes. As that’s a sign of months, if not years and decades of hard mental work, building the willpower muscle and learning self-discipline.

Intelligent are all those who are thankful for painful experiences, mistakes and failures as much (if not more) as they are for the happy moments in life.
Because it shows they know that without pain there wouldn’t be pleasure. And knowing how to learn from the bad makes the good meaningful.

Suffering is much needed in order for one to grow, learn and fight his own demons.

Intelligence is the balance between having a vision, specific goals and a step-by-step plan and taking action every day, and going with the flow, following the natural course of events.

Intelligent are those who question everything, know there’s a deeper reason behind everything and always contemplate on the meaning of life, our mission here, the possible and impossible, the good and bad, etc.

Intelligence can be found not in judging anyone, but accepting criticism and learning from it.

Also, not in being in a rush all the time, but taking a moment every now and then to take a deep breath, to look around, see where you are in life, look back to appreciate the path you’ve walked and look ahead of you with a smile on your face.

Many people consider all these a waste of time.

They think it’s too much effort to work on stuff like finding peace, learning to let go, reading philosophers, making a self-analysis and trying to find the meaning of life.
They find that pointless.

They blame such passionate, curious individuals for their desire to explore the hidden potential of humans, to try to define their wishes and then let go of them, and for spending time thinking about death, being alone for hours reading, writing or working on a project.

But these blamers never really know what life’s all about in the end.

They never actually live it, they just get a sense of what it may look like while feeling a rush of adrenaline, a little burst of inspiration, meeting with other passionate people, or else.

But the deep thinkers, the ones that ask questions and open themselves for possibilities, those that go beyond the egoistic human nature and the little daily problems, that leave behind conventional wisdom and think for themselves – they are the ones who truly live, who succeed, evolve, get to know wisdom, passion, contentment and enlightenment.

They are the real winners in life.

Simply because they never really wanted to be in the race in the first place.

So that’s the real measure of intelligence for me. What do you think?

See also:

14 life lessons that go against conventional wisdom
The true meaning of wisdom
101 important life principles to live by every day
How to find your purpose and do what you love
What are the differences between knowledge, wisdom and insight?

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What the Richest People in the World Have in Common 4

What the Richest People in the World Have in Common

Getting rich is something everyone dreams about.

For those facing financial hardships, getting rich seems the only way out to tide over shortage of money. For the bourgeoisie – the working class – getting rich conjures up visions of stuff they want to buy for luxury or higher social status. Millionaires also wish to get rich: they want to become billionaires and enter Forbes List of the world’s wealthiest people.

Unless you inherit a fortune or get lucky at lottery or sweepstakes, getting rich can be quite tough.

Yet, there are countless rags-to-riches stories around the world. Enterprises such as Amazon, KFC, Facebook or SpaceX have become runaway successes within a short span. The reason: their founders have several things in common, which is rare among other people.

Here we look at various traits that the world’s richest and most successful entrepreneurs have in common.

The Common Traits of The World’s Richest People

The Common Traits of The World's Richest People

1. Serving People.

“If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it,” said John D. Rockefeller, who laid the foundation stone for America’s giant petroleum industry and his own enterprise, Standard Oil. The same adage holds good today.

Facebook, for example, was launched by Mark Zuckerberg and his roommate, Eduardo Saverin to allow Harvard University students to share profiles and pictures

There are countless such examples of ordinary people striking rich. However, they share one thing in common: serving people. The main objective of launching these enterprises was to make life easier or enjoyable for people rather than earning money.

2. Reading Books.

Microsoft founder Bill Gates, celebrity TV show host Oprah Winfrey, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Berkshire-Hathaway CEO Warren Buffet and several other extremely rich people of the world have one more thing in common: they are avid readers.

Bill Gates reads at least 50 books every year – an average of nearly four and a half books per month.

Elon Musk owes his success at SpaceX, the project to open space tourism to his love for books and the knowledge he gained from them about rocketry. Oprah Winfrey attributes her success to dozens of books, including some 70 top titles she read on her way to success while Warren Buffet spends about 80 percent of his day reading books.

3. Long-Term Financial Strategies.

A report by CNBC states, all wealthy people depend upon long-term financial strategies rather than short-term gains. They utilized their earnings and savings to invest in safe stocks that would assure gains in the long run rather than indulging in risky trading that can offer high returns.

Such financial planning and decisions ensured they do not lose money. Further, they invested money in their enterprises without the hope of immediate returns.

These wealthy people first focused on building a brand, offering value for people to identify with the brand. And later, popularize the brand through word-of-mouth publicity, which is more effective than traditional advertising.

4. Never Say Die.

Yet another common character trait shared by the world’s richest people is, they are not quitters.

Like every other human on Earth, these wealthy folks also witnessed ups and downs in life. Some of these were so overwhelming most ordinary people would have called it quits and gone in search of easier ventures.

Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Bleckharczyk, founders of Airbnb, the world’s largest hotels and accommodations aggregator were plagued with financial problems.


Heavily encumbered with debts, bankruptcy was staring at these entrepreneurs in the very eye. Yet, they did not budge. They innovated their service that made Airbnb the world leader in its field today.

Another excellent example is Colonel Harland Sanders, whose recipe for fried chicken was rejected as many as 1,009 times before it was accepted. Col. Sanders is the founder of global chain Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC.

5. Accepting Criticism.

Most people flee from criticism of any sort. Rather than learning from negative comments arising out of their behavior or work, they take umbrage rather quickly. Yet, they do not bother to amend their behavior or work pattern.

All wealthy people, however, are different. They are willing to be criticized for introducing new ideas or thoughts.

Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, rightly says that those who will try and do something new must be willing to draw criticism.

Steve Jobs, founder, Apple, Inc. puts it in even stronger words: “If you want to make everyone happy, do not become a leader; sell ice cream instead.”

The success of Amazon and Apple proves their founders were right when it came to accepting criticism.

6. Out of The Box Thinking.

how regular life looks like and why it won't make you happy

Thinking outside of the ‘box’ or a typical mindset is often impossible for most people. Understandably, because everyone draws their mindset from factors and circumstances they are raised and educated in.

This mindset eventually becomes a formidable fetter for anyone wanting to become an entrepreneur. Generally, most people follow the flock and take professions they falsely believe as best suited for their skills. Others try to follow footsteps of their parents.

The wealthiest people in the world never followed flock or took lucrative professions of their parents.

Mark Zuckerberg’s father was a dentist and mom – a psychiatrist. Bill Gates’ dad was a banker father while his mother was a lawyer.

Despite coming from wealthy families, they chose to follow their passion rather than confine their thinking to the proverbial boxed mindset. Col. Sanders had lost his parents at a young age of six years and had to shoulder responsibilities of his siblings.

Other Examples of What The Wealthiest People Have in Common

As we can see, these qualities or personality traits are common to the world’s richest people. It sets them apart from others. Most of them launched small enterprises with the sole purpose of bettering the lives of people. Their products or services gained popularity because money was never their consideration. Widespread use of their technology, products, and services eventually led them to become wealthy.

These traits are not typical to the US or the western world, as one may mistakenly come to believe. A glance at some richest people in India and elsewhere also reveals, they share the same characteristics with their American counterparts. This amply proves that richest people around the world share something in common, regardless of where they live and flourish.

Another common trait that all rich people share in common is philanthropy.

Since childhood, they believe in giving back to the society and helping the underprivileged. They practiced charity when they were not so rich and continue to donate money for the betterment of the society even after becoming billionaires.

These richest people on the planet never waited to become wealthy. Instead, they were philanthropists since childhood – a trait most other people pathetically lack or try to foist upon themselves to gain popularity.

In Conclusion

It is not easy to become wealthy. Or everyone would become a millionaire. People who do make it to the top have a different way of thinking combined with an undying zest for learning new things and educating themselves.

They do not consider conventional learning at universities as the end of their education. Instead, they try and acquire new skills every day and find ways and means to become better humans rather than focusing on fattening their purses.

The world’s wealthiest people also share one common trait: they are not people pleasers, despite their generosity and willingness to serve the society. Because they know, trying to please everyone will get them nowhere and could mean possible failure.