Tips for working with smarter people  

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Hi again and welcome to another article of mine. Heard my music yet? Go on, visit iTunes or Google Play and give it a listen!.

A picture people standing

Is it just me or do people consider intelligence to be a highly desirable trait? What I do know is that some people can be seen smarter due to their daily habits and attitude. Are you smarter than the rest of us?

Coming from a fast-paced work place and working with smart people daily, I can tell you there is no mystery to my theory of hiring people who are smarter than you. Clever, skilled people in the workplace requires less management and they constantly teach you new things. But while this tip may seem quite easy, it’s hard to execute. #JustSaying

Why is it hard you ask? Well the issue is that people have egos and insecurities and being surrounded with people who are smarter than you can make you feel super bad about yourself.

So, what can you do to reap the benefits from a team of super achievers without feeling too bad about yourself? How do you know if someone is smarter? Perhaps you are smarter and not really aware of some of the traits you have?

I’m sure some of these might sound familiar as you go through life like being messy, adapting to all kinds of situations easily, having an open mind about things, admitting when you don’t know something, you worry a lot, you are a Night Owl, you are very curious, your jokes are slightly better than everyone else and you enjoy hanging out with yourself. Just a few traits of intelligent people.

So, without further-ado, here are some tips and traits that might help you distinguish smart people from the not so smart people or perhaps you would just like to take them in so you seem smarter, who knows? Let me know in the comments section below and enjoy my tips that could help along with some habits you might want to learn to give you that smarter edge.

1. Be curious

Curiouser and curiouser – so says Alice in Wonderland.

And like Alice, highly intelligent people have a wonderfully childlike curiosity about the world around them. All they want to know is how things work, what makes people tick and things like how the universe came into existence. They ask questions, always. The thirst for knowledge is never fully quenched.

Smart people act on the questions their brain immediately asks them when they are presented with an object or situation. They are genuinely interested in the size, color, shape and meaning of everything around them.

A cat being curious

Curiosity: a person who recognises when they don’t know something and uses that as a cue to seek more information, is probably an intelligent person.

2. Become king or queen of questions!

You will notice that when you are surrounded by smart people, your first impulse might be to hide your ignorance. This might come back to bite you because if you don’t ask questions, you’ll never learn. I was always taught from a small age; the only stupid question, is the one not asked.

As much as asking a question is good, considered intelligence is simply also the ability to remember things well. Don’t ask questions that were already answered. Observing something or paying attention is not enough. The trick is to retain that information. Practice, practices, practice… and soon you will develop new techniques to learn and retain new information faster.

3. Know your strengths

The best advise here is that if you have been hired or even become the boss, have something to offer the team and focus on your strengths, rather than your lack of knowledge.

Also, learn from your mistakes and know that smart people reflect on errors all the time. Everything is a matter of trial and error and have you actually heard an intelligent person complaining? They don’t because they reflect and learn and move forward.

Also, how else would you know what your strengths are? A baby cannot walk without falling, right? Errors are how the brain learns. When you make decisions, neurons are activated and if those decisions were wrong, the activated neurons are suppressed.

It doesn’t really take that much of a smart person to realise when a decision is wrong or were your strengths and weaknesses lie.

4. Take your time.

Becoming comfortable among smart people isn’t something that happens overnight. Getting to know and learn from truly smart people, can be a very lengthy process. So, don’t think you will fit in right away. Take your time, get to know them and learn.

Slow-mo running dog

Taking your time can also help you re-evaluate your views. What comes to mind when I mention intelligent famous people? Did you say scientists? You mean like Albert Einstein? Did you know he altered his theory of general relativity? Which means he took his time to re-evaluate his work and efforts.

Train your brain to take its time and adapt to new situations and information – you will only get smarter with time.

5. Don’t worry so much!

People who take risks without thinking things thought don’t always come across as the most intelligent.

People who worry constantly about the past and the future tend to be deep thinkers who take calculated risks based on the facts they’ve spent a lot of time weighing up on.

A smart person is aware that the average human being runs into several pointless distractions every day that only serve a negative purpose in their life. They know how to ignore this and focus on using the best of their abilities to be productive for their own well-being.

6. Be in control!

You might not be as smart as the rest but there is still one sure factor you have 100% under your control. You might not be able to control whether you are the smartest person in the room but what you can control, is how prepared you are.

You might not look smarter but you can always work harder than someone else. My secret is that you work extremely hard at your craft until you fit in. Work ethic is everything!

We all know someone who likes to say how great they are, but intelligent people know that their actions speak louder than words. If you want to be taken seriously and respected by co-workers and friends, let your hard work prove your worth.

7. Read more.

This one sounds simple, doesn’t it? This is one of the most punted tips out there. You might not out-expert the experts but if you pick up a diversity of books, you can contribute that key piece of advice from the left field knowledge base. If you try to absorb enough information, you could contribute a perspective that is different without being completely idiotic.

Nobody achieved anything monumental just waiting for it to happen. Making smart decisions takes effort. You need to read, do research and work hard to achieve your goals.

8. Don’t compete.

The more you compete the less you are learning and accomplishing. The day you accept the fact that there are smarter people than you out there, is the day learning becomes much easier. Don’t compete, contemplate.

What’s more, working hard and making your own success is the key secret to happiness.

Nelson Mandela once said:

"The greatest glory in living life is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall".

A quote picture of Mandela

I hope these tips help you and if you have any more, please feel free to mention them below in the comments section. Take care and be blessed.

Related post: Are you too smart?

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Martin Grobler

About Martin

Martin is a digital marketing specialist, a producer and always online. His educational background is Digital and has given him a broad base from which to approach many topics. His wife & little girl comes first and in his spare time he really enjoys making music. You can learn more about him [HERE].
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