Okay. Great. Now that we've taken care of the formalities, here’s my personal definition of intelligence.
I believe most people are born with the potential to be intelligent. At a very young age:
- We have the ability to take in the sensations of the world.
- We have the ability to recognize what we see, taste, touch, feel, and smell.
- We have the ability to relate them to our past experiences.
- We have the ability to store them in our memories.
- We have the ability to reproduce or recall them.
- We also have the ability to control our reaction to them.
This is what I call the Intelligence Cycle. Here’s a solid example:
Say you’re walking by a pastry shop on your way home from work. You smell the aroma as you glance into the store. The mixture of pleasant shock and delight sends your head spinning. For a moment you’re in ecstasy. For just a second you ponder walking into the shop and picking out your favorite delicacy. Then you snap back to reality. Remember your diet. Remember your budget. Remember your time. You promise yourself that you’ll bake a cake this weekend.
At first glance, you might think of it as a sequence. I think of it as a cycle. It’s the cycle of learning. Once you reach the finally step. Once you’re able to control your reactions you want to increase the detail, the frequency, and the intensity of the sensation.
After smelling the pastries in the shop. You might want to compare the smell to your own baking. You might want to find “reasons” to walk by the shop more often. You might want to walk inside to get a better small. All this is the learning cycle. Raising desire through temptation. Embracing your senses. Realizing your intelligence. Making yourself smarter.
On the other hand, you could stop all the fuss and buy one freakin’ doughnut. What would it hurt? It takes very little time, little money, and you’re not on a diet. I know there’s the “little things add up” argument. For example, small but frequent expenses DO add up. But I don’t care about that as much.
I do care about your mind. It’s really quite easy for anyone to short-circuit the intelligence cycle. Impulse buying jumps from step one to step six. It will waste most of your mental potential. It’s a potential that I’m sure will bring a good amount of success and contentment to your life.