A new study published by the British Journal of Psychology has found that smarter people have a lesser number of friends.
This ties in quite well with my published theory on friendship, whereby the number of real friends (on the highest level) is usually 1-3 persons.
When exploring satisfaction and overall life, the study found that people were less satisfied when living in a densely populated community.
The higher the population density of the immediate environment, the less happy” said Evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University.
The second finding was that people self-reported greater happiness when they had more social interactions with their close friend.
Except for intelligent people, being the one big exception. For intelligent people, the findings were completely reversed.
In my friendship theory, I believe that people can only be close friends with a small number of people, and therefor there wouldn’t be as much social interaction as with having a high number of close friends.
Now this study is just proving that this would only be true for intelligent people.
“The effect of population density on life satisfaction was therefore more than twice as large for low-IQ individuals than for high-IQ individuals,” they found. And “more intelligent individuals were actually less satisfied with life if they socialized with their friends more frequently.”
So basically, smart people are less happy when they spend more time with their friends.
But why would this be the case? Because constantly being around large groups of people can make a person feel more lonely and unhappy.
What I find the most fascinating, is how intelligence is correlated with social satisfaction. Perhaps those with more intelligence, and less likely to spend so much time on socialising as they rather focus on investing into another longer term objective.
It may be that frequent social interactions detract from pursuing a research goal an intelligent person may have, as it may negatively affect their overall satisfaction.
The researchers talked about paleo-happiness in their study, smarter people are better prepared to deal with new challenges. “More intelligent individuals, who possess higher levels of general intelligence and thus greater ability to solve evolutionarily novel problems, may face less difficulty in comprehending and dealing with evolutionarily novel entities and situations,” they write.
Whatever type of person you are, the study says intelligent people socialise less. So perhaps we should all be not just balancing our social interactions, but limiting them to work on other long term goals?