Space & Innovation

Smart People Are Happier With Fewer Friends

A new study suggests that smart people are less happy the more time they spend socializing with friends.

<p>Photo: Ben Duchac // Unsplash</p>

If you're highly intelligent you might want to consider having less friends. This is one finding from a new study conducted by evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University, reports The Washington Post.

The research concludes that the more time intelligent people spent socializing with their friends, the less satisfied they were with life overall. But why would this be? Brookings Institution researcher Carol Graham attributes it to the fact that most highly intelligent people are focused on some type of long-term goal. "Those with more intelligence and the capacity to use it ... are less likely to spend so much time socializing because they are focused on some other longer term objective," she says.

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However, Kanazawa and Li also found that intelligent people tend to deal better with living in highly populated areas, when on the whole, the average person is less happy living in areas with large populations. Human beings are not evolutionarily dispositioned to deal with things like smart phones, rapid transit and reality television, things we see encounter everyday, all day in large cities.

But those with high intelligence are able to more easily adapt to the modern world, and if you can adapt more easily to the situations life presents, you're likely to be happier.

To learn about the science of happiness, check out this video.