Intelligent people are happier alone, study says


A new study published in the British Journal of Psychology has found that social relations can create a problem for people with higher IQs. The research was carried out by evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University.

"The effect of population density on life satisfaction was therefore more than twice as large for low-IQ individuals than for high-IQ individuals," the study reports, adding that "more intelligent individuals were actually less satisfied with life if they socialized with their friends more frequently." The study surveyed 15,000 people between the ages of 18 and 28 and examined population density as a behavioral issue. According to the Washington Post, Kanazawa and Li also said: "Residents of rural areas and small towns are happier than those in suburbs, who in turn are happier than those in small central cities, who in turn are happier than those in large central cities."

Life satisfaction is negatively associated with population density while frequency of socialization with friends is positively related, according to the study findings. For the study, researchers proposed "the savanna theory of happiness," suggesting that "it is not only the current consequences of a given situation but also its ancestral consequences that affect individuals' life satisfaction and explains why such influences of ancestral consequences might interact with intelligence." It is quite possible that intelligent people have more non-social pursuits, and therefore instead of spending time with friends they choose to focus on something else more in depth. The study does not mean all intelligent people do not like spending time with friends, but that they often spend more time alone.

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