If spending your Friday night cuddled up to a glass of red and a good Netflix rom-com, alone, sounds like your idea of heaven, you probably colour yourself an introvert.
There’s a few of us around.
But you will also know it can sometimes feel rather perilous. Picture this: you cancel your plans in favour of some ‘me time’ only to spend the entire time riddled with guilt and seriously wondering whether there’s something wrong with you. Like the rest of the social butterflies are out spreading their wings, while you’re (happily) still stuck in your cocoon.
Well good news, fellow introverts – there might not actually be anything wrong with us after all. Our reclusiveness might reveal less about our social skills and more about our smarts.
A new study by Singapore Management University and the London School of Economics has found that intelligent people prefer their “me time”, after psychologists analysed data from two studies collected from a national review of more than 15,000 people between the ages of 18 and 28.
The first study examined the link between subjects’ scores on an intelligence test, the population density in the area they lived and how satisfied they felt with their lives; while the second study looked at their IQ scores against their life satisfaction and how often they socialised with friends.
Researchers found those people who live in less populated areas reported feeling happier, but those with high IQs living in the same areas felt less satisfied. While most people were happier they more often the socialised, intelligent people reported feeling less satisfied with their lives the more time they spent with their friends. Most likely this could be put down to the ‘savanna theory of happiness’, which suggests intelligent brains are more adaptable, including when it comes to being alone, the study found.
So next time you feel guilty for cancelling plans and snuggling up to that red, just remember you can’t help how intelligent you are. Wink.