Howard Gardner, a Harvard developmental psychologist, has made the famous claim that there are 9 types of intelligence out there, and that everyone falls into at least one category. Think you know what you’re naturally good at? These descriptions may make you think again!
1. Naturalist Intelligence (“Nature Smart”)
Are you a nature lover? Do you have a connection with the natural world that is stronger than others around you? If so, then you may have naturalist intelligence. You are most suited to be a hunter, farmer, botanist, or chef.
2. Musical Intelligence (“Music Smart”)
People who have musical intelligence have an innate understanding of the nuances of pitch, rhythm, timbre, and tone. Musical intelligence is most obvious in children. If you have a child who is constantly singing or drumming, then they may just be “music smart.”
3. Logical-Mathematical Intelligence (“Number/Reasoning Smart”)
Good with numbers? Then you may fall into this category. People with logical-mathematical intelligence can calculate, quantify, consider proportions and hypotheses, and carry out mathematical operations.
4. Existential Intelligence (“Deep Thinker Smart”)
Do you find yourself sitting and pondering the “big picture” questions of life? Love to read about philosophy, religion, and ideologies? You may just have existential intelligence. This type of intelligence usually lends itself to people who are professors, writers, or creative types.
5. Interpersonal Intelligence (“People Smart”)
Interpersonal intelligence can be found in people who invest a lot of time in understanding their peers. It requires a good deal of verbal and non-verbal communication. You may be “people smart” if you generally a keen perception of the true personalities of those around you.
6. Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence (“Body Smart”)
Love to work out, dance, or play sports? If so, then you may be “body smart.” The key here is that folks with body-kinesthetic intelligence have a great sense of timing and also have a strong mind-body awareness.
7. Linguistic Intelligence (“Word Smart”)
Are you a Scrabble aficionado? Love to read, write, and partake in complex conversations? If so, then you may have linguistic intelligence. People who are strong in this area generally end up being wordsmiths or book lovers.
8. Intra-personal Intelligence (“Self Smart”)
People with intra-personal intelligence are the types who really have a good idea of what is best for them. They are self-aware and highly motivated. Psychologists, spiritual leaders, and philosophers tend to fall in this category.
9. Spatial Intelligence (“Picture Smart”)
Are you able to think in three dimensions? Great at packing a car for a family trip or organizing a room? If so, then you may have spatial intelligence! People with this type of intelligence tend to be painters, pilots, or architects.