The Multiple Intelligence Theory introduced by Dr. Howard Gardner in 1983 is one of my favourites to explain the human nature and interactions. The traditional (western) take on intelligence is linguisticaly and logical-mathematically based. However that does not work for everyone, as there is obviously more variety of intelligences. Here is the Gardner`s classification:
|Linguistic intelligence (“word smart”):|
|Logical-mathematical intelligence (“number/reasoning smart”)|
|Spatial intelligence (“picture, space smart”)|
|Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence (“body smart”)|
|Musical intelligence (“music smart”)|
|Interpersonal intelligence (“people smart”)|
|Intrapersonal intelligence (“self smart”)|
|Naturalist intelligence (“nature smart”)|
Later on Gardner (1998) has nominated two additional candidate intelligences: Spiritual and Existentional ones, however he was less sure about how to define and incorporate them.
The theory says, a person has some of these intelligences highly developed, some less.
Out of my fasciantion for this theory I was observing my interactions with people around and came to a perplexing conclusion that my best friends are the ones with the same highly developed intelligence as mine (linguistic). Then I analysed all the happy couples I know and found out that – as far as I can obverse – both partners have the same leading intelligence! If we look at celebrity world, we can see that many sport stars go well with models (both being “body smart”), and in generally people of similar professions can coexist much better (assumed they have chosen their professions according to their leading intelligence and not to some other reason).
Could it be a good tip for those who are looking for a happy relationships? Surely, there is much, much more what makes a happy marriage/freindship/collaboration – but the mutual understanding seem to be based to a greater extend on the mutual intelligence. I think they call it “be on the same wave length”.
You can test yourself on your leading intelligences here or here. Please note, that Dr.Gardner was vocal about his disdain for a singularly psychometric approach to measuring intelligence based on paper and pencil tests.