Professional Development

Being Lazy Means You’re Intelligent—According to Science

Written by Peter Jones

According to a new study, brainy people tend to spend more time being chill than their less-intelligent, but more active counterparts—mostly because they have a higher IQ, get bored less and are thus more likely to be comfortable getting lost in thought. Active people, on the other hand, need constant activity to keep themselves stimulated, as they are more easily bored.

Florida Gulf University gave a test to a group of students, asking them to rate how strongly they agreed with statements about engagement with tasks and problems, and from this, were able to select 30 “thinkers” and 30 “non-thinkers” from their pool.

The 60 subjects then wore a movement/activity tracking device on their wrists for the next week, giving researchers a constant stream of data about their physical habits. Their findings, described as “highly significant” and “robust” in statistical terms, showed that the “thinkers” were far less active during the week than their “non-thinker” counterparts. The weekends, strangely, were about the same.

It may actually be beneficial, then, to spend an extra hour or two in bed thinking through tasks and schedules, revisiting and reimagining your goals. Your daydreaming might be twice as generative as a non-thinker’s doing.

There’s a danger, of course, to less active people—no matter how brainy—and that is the danger of the sedentary lifestyle. So if you think you might be a “thinker,” and relishing those quiet moments lost in thought, you might also want to make a point of exercising enough. Just to make sure you stay healthy and nourish your body—not just your brain.

In addition to this, you should also consider finding a job that is compatible with your personality. The sooner you find a job that you enjoy, the happier you will be, regardless of how intelligent or lazy you are.

About the author

Peter Jones