Why high IQ is not a gauge to success in life

   On the basis of a test, a person’s intellectual level represented by a number determines his/her IQ level. The higher the number, the more intelligent the person is.

   Does high intellect guarantee success in life?

   At first glance, many would believe so. This belief is from the perception that many of the world’s successful individuals have been gifted with high IQ or intellect. There is no denial that some but not all monetary or personal successes are products of intellectual minds. But there are various other factors that contribute to the success of an intellectual person. These factors also apply to individuals with average intellect.

   Some successes are triggered by factors that have little to do with intellect — like opportunity, timing, perseverance and sheer hard work. Devotion or love for your work is more vital to success than intellect. When love is poured into your work, the hardships that go with it somehow diminish.

   In the same context, not all intellectually gifted individuals reach the pinnacle of success. Some hardly touch the first base. The irony of a highly intellectual individual with reference to success is the pressure they may feel from within. The people around them, especially those who know about the individual being highly intellectual, expect success. The pressure is stronger when someone is compelled by the expectations of others. Sometimes this kind of forceful pressure runs contrary to the flow of achieving the success  and can create anxiety within the individual.

   While perseverance is somewhat a kind of pressure, we have to distinguish the difference between the two. Perseverance is pressure exerted on you by you, not by external forces. Perseverance is also a pressure that leans toward positive action and optimism. The commitment is to you, not to others.

   It may be worthwhile to note that the intelligence of a person can be variable. An intelligent person can come up with a many ideas. But life does not offer any guarantee of success and neither does having ideas, no matter how numerous they are. However, a single simple idea becomes golden if it fits into the possibility of attaining success that may change your life.

   At times, ideas can do funny things to your life. The more you forcibly try to come up with an idea to succeed in life, the more the idea seems to play the role of the unreachable star. There are instances where you hardly apply any force whatsoever and still come up with an idea or a formula for success.

   Ideas can also come by chance. A person may pass by a place, see something insignificant (but significant to the person), and an idea pops up. This hardly has any bearing to intelligence. Intelligence and ideas are loosely interrelated. You don’t need to be an above average or intelligent person to come up with great ideas.

   The notion that intelligence cannot be acquired is wrong. Neither is intelligence in a person fixed. Intelligence can be equated to building a fit body, for instance.

   How do you develop a fit body? The gym can help. Body building equipment can help. But the main component to a fit body is continuous exercise and toning of your muscles. Nobody gets a fit body overnight. It takes time.

   Hard work, perseverance and commitment to any endeavor are some key components to success. Intelligence is just part of success in life, but intelligence alone does not guarantee success.

Steve, a Ramona resident, may be contacted at steven@ramonahome.com.



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