Many of us desire to grow holistically while improving our skill sets and intellectual capacity. My mentor would say to me, each time I changed my mind, Wisdom comes later.” So how do we improve our intelligence and our wisdom at the same time? Wisdom often comes with experiences. But can we add wisdom as we develop our knowledge? Yes we can.
The first step we must take is to develop our “Intrapersonal Intelligence.” Intrapersonal intelligence is a form of knowledge that we all share, yet few know how to use it. It is the intelligence of self, the ability to decipher and analyze our motives, desires, thoughts, and emotions. The acts of practicing self-reflection and self-mastery are methods of intrapersonal intelligence. Which then helps us understand what we want, what we don’t want, and why we behave the way we do. Armed with this knowledge, we then can gain invaluable wisdom beyond our years.
Harvard professor Howard Gardner developed nine levels of intelligence based on research. Intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligence were two types of knowledge. Both pertain to personal relationships: one with the self, and one with other people.
Intrapersonal is the intelligence of the self.
Interpersonal is the intelligence of others.
Both are important, but to gain wisdom beyond our years it all starts with improving our “intra” skills. When you can grow in this area, then enlightenment enters your life more intentionally.
My suggestion, for the next few weeks focus on cultivating your intrapersonal intelligence by implementing a few or all of the following personal growth activities into your daily routine:
1. Keep a journal of all your thoughts.
2. Take 10-30 minutes of being with yourself.
3. Remember your dreams and write them down.
4. Step out of your comfort zone and develop a brand new skill – language, crosswords, yoga, meditation, mind games, etc.
5. Spend thirty minutes to one hour disconnecting from electronic devices – engage in physical activity.
These mindful acts set the course for more wisdom to enter your life. Get started today developing your intrapersonal intelligence. The peace and happiness we discover from within by engaging in this practice will radiate into empowering and inspiring those we lead, coach, and parent.
By Brian Nadon