‘The measure of intelligence is the ability to change’ is one of the most famous quotes that allegedly comes from Albert Einstein. And in this rapidly changing world, it appears to be more true than ever.
Change is inevitable, and we need to be able to successfully navigate through it. And change, like so many other things can go in two directions – positive and negative. If we fail to navigate the turbulent waters of change in the right direction we are almost sure to meet misfortune and failure.
By learning to navigate through the changes life throws at us we will inevitably become more intelligent, perceptive and flexible. Perceptiveness, evaluation and flexibility are what you need to succeed in life and overcome the obstacles that come your way. Intelligence is measured through modifications made when faced with change and adapting further steps accordingly.
We grow when we change, and we become more wise in the process. Generally, humans flourish in change and expansion — but can have many inner or outer elements to change.
Trying to keep everything as it is is not only an unhealthy approach to life, but also a mission impossible. Avoiding change means you are misinterpreting human qualities and flourishing.
If we take a look at nature itself and the inevitable evolutionary process we will find a confirmation for what is being said. Those animals that survived were the ones that were able to adapt quickly; the rest became extinct.
The underlying meaning of ‘The measure of intelligence is the ability of change’ is that if we are not able to embrace change and grow cognitively, as well as spiritually, then we are not behaving in an intelligent manner, nor are we boosting our intelligence.
What is more, our brains reshape through experience because they assimilate data for the purpose of prediction.
Being capable of predicting how our demeanor will lead to results is one of the most significant goals of our brains. If you touched fire even once, you’ll know not to touch it again, as you now have the experience of being burnt. Our brain then applies this result to prevent you from touching similar hot things.
Prediction mistakes are also something we need to experience to be able to assimilate them into our brain and grow by doing so.
It is for this reason that failure is such a key element of success. When we wrongly predict the results of our actions due to lack of knowledge, failure occurs. But, when we encounter failure or have a prediction error, we can then get our expectations and strategies up to date for our next endeavour.
Adjusting and changing ourselves corresponding to the situation is a terrific quality. Thus, if we are aiming for success we must understand that change is inevitable and aim towards changing ourselves for the better and learning from our mistakes. Needless to say, shrewdness definitely helps us, but if we want to make remarkable progress and achieve success, change is a must.
Intelligence is basically applied insight and is far more powerful than the pure knowledge that lies underneath. Having an abundance of information in our head is not enough. Properly applying that knowledge is what is important – and that’s where wisdom and intelligence come from.
Intriguingly, there is plenty of research that indicates that as we age, we tend to become more shut to education. We become hesitant when it comes to new experiences, and, as it turns out, generally want our lives to be foreseeable. And, to keep things relatively predictable, we shun new experiences and make our life into a resonating chamber.
If we are not looking for new experiences in a proactive manner and are not learning new information, we can easily get stuck. And once we get stuck, we can’t grow and change.
Once we start changing ourselves, we will be prepared to change the world. If we want to change the world, we have to understand that we will also have to change ourselves. When people are genuinely dedicated to something (or someone), chances are, they will be required to change in the direction the commitment necessitates. If we are able to successfully transform ourselves, we will also be equipped with the knowledge to positively transform others as well.
It takes a changed man to change the world. Once we are on fire we’ll be able to light a fire in others as well.
Try looking a couple of years back and think about how much you’ve matured and changed. 2–5 years is not a long period of time, but it is enough to get you from earning a minimum wage to millions of dollars. Not only that, you can go from single to married with kids which also turns your world upside down.
Examining and measuring where we are and where we’ve been is really important. This kind of reflection offers a plethora of psychological benefits. Some of us will be left with feelings of gratitude and appreciation and others will gain valuable insight into how many things we did right. By measuring our progress, we can also gain more self-respect because we measure our self-value based on past experiences.
Embrace change, learn from your mistakes, grow with the world and adapt, but don’t forget to reflect – and you will go far!