Advertising
Advertising

Science Proves Funny People Are More Intelligent

Science Proves Funny People Are More Intelligent

Do you consider yourself as funny? If you answered yes, that’s funny because you’re probably not funny. If you answered no, oh boy, are you funny!

Albert Einstein was also a funny man. Apparently, he was popular with the ladies. Who would have thought? He once quipped, “Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves.”

Stephen Hawking is another brilliant, intelligent scientist who is also known for his sharp sense of humor. Coincidence? Probably not! It’s more likely that funny people are just plain smarter.

Why funny people are smarter

According to researchers Gil Greengross and Geoffrey Miller, both from the University of New Mexico, and Rod A. Martin from the University of Western Ontario, humor is a sign of underlying cognitive ability and fitness. This assertion was confirmed by an interesting study the trio did involving college students.

Advertising

The researchers asked a group of college students to perform a humorous task by creating made-up profiles of people based on some basic information. The students then rated how funny the other study participant’s answers were, and then all participants were asked to complete tests of general intelligence, conscientiousness, openness, extraversion, sociability and neuroticism.

The study revealed that general intelligence was a strong predictor of humor, independent of the other variables. The funny guys and girls, those with a great sense of humor, tended to have better cognitive ability and more smarts.

Here’re more reasons why science says funny people are smarter:

1. They have higher IQ

A study published in the 1970s looked at 55 male and 14 female comedians and found that they consistently scored significantly higher on IQ tests than the average population.

Advertising

Whereas the average IQ score in the general population is between 90 and 110, male comedians were found to score on average 138 and female comedians scored on average 126.

Need we say more?

2. They manifest greater creativity

People like Trevor Noah, Ellen DeGeneres and Amy Schumer who are funny in many different ways, are particularly gifted at satire. And satire demands a greater degree of intelligence to not only pull off, but also to appreciate. For example, it is not without good reasons that Amy Schumer’s parody sketch 12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer was voted one of the funniest sketches on television for a full year.

Schumer’s parody obviously required lots of creative ingenuity to write. But, it also calls for even more smarts and open-mindedness to enjoy and fully appreciate the underlying elements within it, such as the subtle jabs at the gender disparity prevalent in Hollywood.

Advertising

William E. Hauck and John W. Thomas of Bucknell University conducted a research to study three variables: Creativity, intelligence, and a sense of humor. They found that while creativity and intelligence were independent of each other, humor related to both creativity and intelligence.

3. They have impressive reasoning ability and verbal skills

In a 2011 study, researchers at the University of New Mexico asked 400 psychology students to complete measures of abstract reasoning ability and verbal intelligence before writing captions for a series of New Yorker cartoons.

It emerged that the captions that were rated funnier were produced by the students who scored higher on tests of cognitive ability. Actually, students who specifically scored high on the test of verbal intelligence were found to be most likely to produce funny captions.

A follow up study out of the same university used a group of comedians to complete a similar procedure. Results showed that comedians not only produced more and funnier caption ideas than the students had, but also scored higher on the test of verbal intelligence.

Advertising

Verbal intelligence is generally linked with overall intelligence.

4. They make new friends more easily

You must have noticed at some point that people who are openly funny tend to have more friends and make new ones relatively easily.

Maybe it’s because of their verbal intelligence, but people seem drawn to the funny types. So much so that the aforementioned University of New Mexico study of college students also found that the funnier students reported having had more sexual partners than their duller peers.

Of course, if you don’t have a knack for cracking people up, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not intelligent – or that you’ll never attract a romantic partner. A good sense of humor is just one of many traits that signal above average intelligence.

Besides, if you are someone who rather appreciates humor more when others are the source of the funny instead of being the originator, that’s also a sign that you may have above-average intelligence.

More by this author

10 Amazing Health Benefits Of Beer Great Leaders Remember to Offer These 10 Things All The Time 10 Things a Real Man Does When He’s in a Relationship 15 Funny English Idioms You May Not Know 10 of the Most Effective Ice Breakers for Starting Meaningful Conversations

Trending in Science

1Science Says Screaming Is Good For You 2Weighted Blanket for Anxiety and Insomnia: How to Make It Work 3Scientists Discover Why You Should Take Off Your Shoes Before Entering Your Home 4Science Says Piano Players’ Brains Are Very Different From Everybody Else’s 5This Is Why You Should Sleep on Your Left Side (Backed by Science)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on June 21, 2018

Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

There are many reasons why people might scream – they’re angry, scared, or in pain (or maybe they’re in a metal band!). Some might say that screaming is bad, but here’s why science says it’s good for you.

“For the first time in the history of psychology there is a way to access feelings, hidden away, in a safe way and thus to reduce human suffering. It is, in essence, the first science of psychotherapy.” — Dr. Arthur Janov

Primal Therapy

Dr. Arthur Janov invented Primal Therapy in the late 1960’s. It is a practice that allows the patient to face their repressed emotions from past trauma head on and let those emotions go. This treatment is intended to cure any mental illness the patient may have that surfaced from this past trauma. In most cases, Primal Therapy has lead Dr. Janov’s patients to scream towards the end of their session, though it was not part of the original procedure. During a group therapy session that was at a standstill, Dr. Janov says that one of his patients, a student he called Danny, told a story that inspired him to implement a technique that he never would have thought of on his own.

Advertising

How it Started

“During a lull in our group therapy session, he told us a story about a man named Ortiz who was currently doing an act on the London stage in which he paraded around in diapers drinking bottles of milk. Throughout his number, Ortiz is shouting, ‘Mommy! Daddy! Mommy! Daddy!’ at the top of his lungs. At the end of his act he vomits. Plastic bags are passed out, and the audience is requested to follow suit.”

It doesn’t end there, though. Dr. Janov said that his patient was quite fascinated with that story, and that alone moved him to suggest something even he believed to be a little elementary.

“I asked him to call out, ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ Danny refused, saying that he couldn’t see the sense in such a childish act, and frankly, neither could I. But I persisted, and finally, he gave in. As he began, he became noticeably upset. Suddenly he was writhing on the floor in agony. His breathing was rapid, spasmodic. ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ came out of his mouth almost involuntarily in loud screeches. He appeared to be in a coma or hypnotic state. The writhing gave way to small convulsions, and finally, he released a piercing, deathlike scream that rattled the walls of my office. The entire episode lasted only a few minutes, and neither Danny nor I had any idea what had happened. All he could say afterward was: ‘I made it! I don’t know what, but I can feel.’”

Delving deeper

Dr. Janov says he was baffled for months, but then he decided to experiment with another patient with the same method, which lead to a similar result as before. The patient started out calling “Mommy! Daddy!” then experienced convulsions, heavy breathing, and then eventually screamed. After the session, Dr. Janov says his patient was transformed and became “virtually another human being. He became alert… he seemed to understand himself.”

Although the initial intention of this particular practice wasn’t to get the patient to scream, more than once did his Primal Therapy sessions end with the patient screaming and feeling lighter, revived, and relieved of stresses that were holding them down in life.

Some Methods To Practice Screaming

If you want to try it out for yourself, keep reading!

Advertising

  • Step 1: Be Alone — Be alone. If you live in a place that you can’t be alone, it might be a good idea to talk to your family or roommates and explain to them what you’re about to do and make sure they’re okay with it. If you’re good to go, move on to step 2.
  • Step 2: Lie Down — Lie down on a yoga mat on your back and place a pillow underneath your head. If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can use a rug or even a soft blanket.
  • Step 3: Think — Think of things that have hurt you or made you angry. It can be anything from your childhood or even something that happened recently to make yourself cry, if you’re not already crying or upset. You could even scream “Mommy! Daddy!” just like Dr. Janov’s patients did to get yourself started.
  • Step 4: Scream — Don’t hold anything back; cry and scream as loud as you can. You can also pound your fists on the ground, or just lie there and scream at the top of your lungs.

After this, you should return your breathing to a normal and steady pace. You should feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted off of you. If not, you can also try these other methods.

Scream Sing

Scream singing” is referring to what a lot of lead singers in metal or screamo bands will do. I’ve tried it and although I wasn’t very good at it, it was fun and definitely relieved me of any stress I was feeling from before. It usually ends up sounding like a really loud grunt, but nonetheless, it’s considered screaming.

Advertising

  • Step 1 — Bear down and make a grunting sound.
  • Step 2 — Hiss like a snake and make sure to do this from your diaphragm (your stomach) for as long as you can.
  • Step 3 — Breathe and push your stomach out for more air when you are belting notes, kind of like you would if you were singing.
  • Step 4 — Try different ways to let out air to control how long the note will last, just make sure not to let out too much air.
  • Step 5 — Distort your voice by pushing air out from your throat, just be careful not to strain yourself.
  • Step 6 — Play around with the pitch of your screams and how wide your mouth is open – the wider your mouth is open, the higher the screams will sound. The narrower or rounder your mouth is (and most likely shaped like an “o”), the lower the screams will sound.
  • Step 7 — Start screaming to metal music. If you’re not a huge metal fan, it’s okay. You don’t have to use this method if you don’t want to.

If you want a more thorough walkthrough of how to scream sing, here’s a good video tutorial. If this method is too strenuous on your vocal chords, stop. Also, make sure to stay hydrated when scream singing and drink lots of water.

Scream into a pillow

Grab a pillow and scream into it. This method is probably the fastest and easiest way to practice screaming. Just make sure to come up for air.

Advertising

Always remember to make sure that you’re not going to disturb anyone while practicing any of these methods of screaming. And with that, happy screaming!

Featured photo credit: Sharon Mollerus via flickr.com

Read Next