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Dr. S. R. Chandrasekhar Institute of Speech and HearingDr. S. R. Chandrasekhar Institute of Speech and Hearing

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What are your smart strengths?

Most people scoring 130 or above on an IQ test pride themselves on being a genius. Traditionally psychologists believed that people’s capacity for learning was fixed and that you’re either born smart or you’re not. Furthermore, measuring intelligence was almost limited to how well you performed on logic and math tasks on IQ tests.

Gardener’s  theory of multiple intelligence  enabled educational psychologists and others to broaden their understanding about what constitutes intelligence and implement differentiated education in schools .His theory was path breaking because it spoke of intelligence as being made up of at least six to nine distinct abilities present in varying degrees in people. Gardner theory also implied people’s intelligence could be improved. While most people have some degree of each of these six types of intelligence, very few use even  one kind of intelligence to their fullest potential.

Personal intelligence (Self Smart)
Developing awareness and a  solid sense of ‘self ‘is crucial to nurturing self-esteem and a positive self-image. People who score high on personal intelligence are typically comfortable expressing the full range of their emotions. They are also generally in tune with their conscious and unconscious feelings. Perhaps most importantly, people with a high degree of this intelligence appear not just to recognize their own emotions, but the underlying causes for them, as well. This helps people high on personal intelligence to be self-reliant and also be able to improve their own lives.

Social intelligence (People Smart)
Social intelligence refers to the ability to read other people and understand their intentions and motivations. People with this intelligence are usually understand the differences between what others say and what they really mean.  People who successfully use this type of intelligence can be masterful conversationalists. This can be due to a combination of excellent listening skills and the ability to meaningfully engage others. People who are socially intelligent can usually make the people around them feel comfortable and included. They also tend to enjoy interacting with a variety of people.

Visual/spatial intelligence: (Picture Smart)

People with visual/spatial intelligence have the interesting ability of being able to form high-quality mental images and even manipulate those pictures to form new things. People who use this type of intelligence tend to think in pictures rather than numbers or words. As a result, they are better at learning concepts when seeing charts, pictures, or diagrams rather than hearing a lecture. Visual/spatial intelligence can make people great with navigation. This can make them great at careers such as mechanical engineering, architecture or interior design.

Physical intelligence: (Body Smart)
Prowess in sports, dance, physical grace and rhythm, control of the body are important in  this kind of intelligence. Another important part is the use of fine motor skills such as hand-eye coordination for activities like surgery, carpentry, and painting.
Physical intelligence isn’t just about dance and athleticism. Skills that can be worked on when it comes to improving physical intelligence include strength, endurance, flexibility, balance, dexterity, coordination, and good reflexes .

Logical/mathematical intelligence ( Number Smart) 

People with a high level of logical/mathematical intelligence are generally great problem solvers who are able to both think critically and analyze data. Apart from good grades in school math or college entrance tests, there are also many  uses for logical/mathematical intelligence. It’s hard to grasp the complexities of important scientific, social, economic, or political issues if one fails to understand the data and statistics to interpret it. Logically/mathematically intelligent people are better able to manage their own finances.

Linguistic intelligence ( Word Smart)
Generally, people with a high degree of linguistic intelligence have a greater gift for expressing themselves than others. Poets, lecturers, actors, writers and public leaders are among the people who rely heavily on linguistic intelligence. At times, having this type of intelligence can make for very persuasive communication. By choosing the right words at the right time, linguistic intelligence can enable people to influence others and bring positive change in society with careers such as journalism, politics, legal studies and teaching.

Understanding how multiple intelligence works, one needs to observe and analyze the degree to which they possess and actively use these types of intelligence,. They can expand their particular domain of strength and most importantly, work on  strategies in their daily life to enhance those  intelligences  that are not fully developed  so as to reach their fullest and  maximum potential.

Dr.Shakila Naidu,
Professor of Practice in Psychology.

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