Just how smart are you really?
There’s a lot that can be told from your personality and how you behave.
Here are the top personality traits that show you’re a smart man.
Every smart man has a high degree of self-awareness.
He knows his strengths and weaknesses.
He knows his triggers and his vulnerabilities in life, love and business.
The smart man follows the advice of the Greek Oracle at Delphi:
Next up in the personality traits that show you’re a smart man is skepticism.
Smart men don’t believe everything they’re told.
They practice the habit of verifying information they receive instead of just blindly following.
If the news anchor breathlessly says there’s a high chance of an economic collapse, the smart man doesn’t just start texting all his friends and colleagues with doomsday prediction:
He digs into some charts and underlying numbers and takes a look for himself first before reaching any preliminary conclusions.
Smart men are adaptive.
If you’re a smart guy, you understand and embrace that the only thing you can truly rely on in life is change.
Time is going to keep on going and life, love and your career is going to keep changing.
You need to be able to adapt to the curveballs that are going to come your way.
This means not only having a plan B, but also having a plan C and a plan D.
That’s just common sense.
Life is plenty stressful enough without also being stressed out by other people.
The smart man understands that being generally affable and pleasant to be around is a net plus.
There are times life requires us to say no, play hardball or stand up to bullies.
But in most surface interactions, being a likable man is a definite advantage.
That’s why if you’re smart you are friendly and affable to most people you meet.
We hear a lot these days about “toxic masculinity” and how men should show their feelings more.
The truth is that there’s a lot of value in traditional masculine ideals like stoicism.
Being a stoic doesn’t mean you have no feelings or never cry.
It simply means that you can hold your own and refrain from breaking down, venting or becoming emotional when life gets tough.
It means you can help others get through hard times by showing strength and grit in the face of adversity and challenge.
This is one masculine ideal that needs to be brought back!
At the same time, sensitivity is definitely an important trait of an intelligent man.
It is simply a matter of defining what is meant here by sensitivity.
It doesn’t mean a guy who gets weepy when he has a hard day…
It doesn’t mean a guy who takes three weeks off work because he’s feeling “emotionally exhausted.”
Real sensitivity is about self-honesty and emotional intelligence.
The sensitive man is willing and able to discuss his emotions and those of others in a mature and respectful way.
He also understands that any strong team in business or in your personal life will take emotions into account and have a place for them to be expressed and factor in.
Genetics certainly play a role in our intelligence and personality traits.
But we also have a big role in our own development.
This is why one of the top personality traits that show you’re a smart man is inquisitiveness.
Asking questions is a distinct sign of being smart and of wanting to be smarter.
The desire to know more and learn more is a key marker of intelligence.
Smart people want to know and learn as much as possible.
Stupid people think they already know everything or at least display very little curiosity to learn more.
It’s quite a definite difference!
Next up in the biggest personality traits that show you’re a smart man is introspectiveness.
No matter whether you are introverted or extroverted, the ability and desire to sometimes reflect and spend time with yourself is a key marker of intelligence.
A smart man knows that self-knowledge and self-awareness are sometimes built in solitude and quiet reflection.
He is willing to take the time to be introspective, particularly when contemplating a major decision or facing a fork in the road.
Introspection isn’t overthinking, it’s just deep thinking.
And it’s smart!
Numinous refers to spiritual or religious experiences that aren’t explicable by regular, materialistic science.
The smart man is at least open to the numinous.
Even if he is not spiritual, he is open to hearing about spiritual or religious topics from others and hearing about their experiences.
This openness to spirituality is never naive, and he always retains his skepticism that I talked about at the beginning.
But a smart man is definitely open to the numinous and always keeps a small part of himself potentially open to the idea that there are forces, experiences and aspects of life that are not currently explicable.
Intelligence doesn’t get you very far if you approach life with a nihilistic attitude.
The truly sharp guy is also enthusiastic.
He approaches his life with energy and enthusiasm.
He pursues his dreams full-on and encourages others to pursue theirs.
He never goes at a project, relationship or activity half-a**ed.
He’s all on or nothing.
This enthusiasm tends to be infectious and is a powerful force that buoys those around him and leads to great success in business and his personal life.
Next up in the personality traits that show you’re a smart man is expressiveness.
Whether or not you’re a reserved guy, if you’re intelligent then you know how to express your desires, emotions and goals.
For example, if you want very badly to be a business partner with somebody, you’re able to explain to him or her why this is so important to you as well as what they would get out of the deal.
You’re verbally articulate and able to express what you like, want, dislike and don’t want using accurate and compelling words.
You may not be a master orator, but you are able to express what you want and express your emotions enough to be understood and empathized with.
This kind of clear communicator ability also lends itself well to negotiating and conflict resolution and de-escalation.
An intelligent man is a determined man.
If you’re a smart guy then you know that nothing comes from free and that most great accomplishments and joys come through blood, sweat and tears.
You’re not only willing to put in the work, you relish it.
You like having a schedule, getting up early and sticking to your goals.
You take setbacks as learning opportunities and your own weak points are just places to work on twice as hard in terms of self-improvement.
You’re determined and you see projects through, meaning that others can trust you and you can trust yourself.
You don’t give up easily!
The next of the personality traits that show you’re a smart man is innovativeness.
Smart men don’t just follow the well-worn path.
They create new paths.
While you may be more than willing to follow and respect a smart and competent leader, you also embrace the opportunity to create and innovate for yourself.
If that means living off-grid, brainstorming new business concepts or going about relationships and dating in your own unique way, so be it:
You’re all game for creating your own life and living according to what you deem best and true, rather than just what is popular or easy to follow.
There’s a fine line between overthinking and being analytical, but the smart man is the latter.
He doesn’t overthink things, nor does he fill his life with regret and second-guessing his past decisions.
But he does engage in analysis and thorough review.
He does this before making a decision and after in order to think about what he can do better next time.
Analysis is smart because unless you carefully pick apart what happened and why, you won’t be able to improve yourself or what you do in life.
Lastly in terms of personality traits that show you’re a smart man is conscientiousness.
This essentially means follow-through.
Some brilliant guys end up losing respect, money and love because they don’t follow through on what they say or they double cross or let down those who give them loyalty.
Being conscientious means paying attention to upholding your side of a deal.
It means caring about whether or not you’ve acted according to your principles and redoing work that’s not up to a high enough standard.
Being conscientious is about far more than just being likable, it’s about being trustworthy.
What is true intelligence?
A genuinely smart man isn’t just book smart, he’s street smart.
The list above separates the sheep from the goats and makes clear a man who’s truly smart from an imposter.
True intelligence is never just theoretical: it’s well-rounded and applicable to real life in every way possible.