This episode of Bulletproof Radio includes a surprising amount of laughter that makes the topic of intelligence and genius a fun listen.
Our guest is Dean Keith Simonton, Ph.D., a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of California-Davis. He’s known as the “Maverick Psychologist” who has been defying the establishment all of his near half-century career in the areas of genius, creativity, aesthetics, and leadership.
In this lively conversation, you’ll learn that intelligence needs a sprinkling of grit, creativity and imagination to flourish into genius. You’ll find out that taking risks matters: “In order to make discoveries, in order to invent new things, you have to be willing to try things out and fail.” You’ll discover, too, that creators (typically introverts) and leaders (typically extroverts) use their smarts in significantly different ways.
“I think the problem is that when people think that they don’t have a genius level IQ,” Dr. Dean says. “They may think they’re doomed or they’re not going to be able to achieve much.” But, “you can’t let the IQ score determine who you are.” His most recent book gives a “genius checklist” of tips for anyone to follow.
Dr. Dean studies the cognitive, personal, developmental, social, and cultural factors behind eminence, giftedness, and talent. He’s researched some of the greatest figures throughout history and examined why their achievements—in science, philosophy, literature, music, art, cinema, politics, and war—have stood the test of time.
Be open to today’s experience (hint… it’s a personality predictor of outstanding achievement) and …
Follow Along with the Transcript
The Genius Checklist: Nine Paradoxical Tips on How You Can Become a Creative Genius! (2018)
- What is the definition of genius? 00:08:26
- Grit is more important than intelligence 00:12:00
- There are some very intelligent people who don’t have anything to say 00:13:30
- The upside of social media and the internet 00:25:40
- The difference between intelligence and IQ 00:29:30
- What are “blind variation and selective retention?” 00:51:20
- The multiples phenomenon 01:01:30
- Big Ideas:
- What is an outstanding of unique achievement 00:09:30
- How do intelligence and achievement go together? 00:11:30
- Can you raise your intelligence? 00:15:00
- The great example of Galileo being generally curious 00:20:20
- How to be more like a historical genius 00:25:30
- A Stanford study on 1500+ children with high IQs 00:30:10
- British Prime Ministers have higher IQs than Presidents in the USA 00:33:40
- The difference between creators and leaders 00:37:50
- What can we learn from people who go against the grain? 00:56:50
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