Are Messy People Smarter?

This article will look at messy people to find out if they’re more intelligent or if such claims are only a figment of the imagination.

You’re probably reading this because you’re pretty messy and need some form of justification for that. Whatever your goal is, you’ll find answers right here.

If you’ve stayed with or observed messy people, you’re more likely to conclude that these sets of individuals have one thing in common; they’re smart.

While such assumptions have widely spread, few can determine whether they’re true. Are messy people smarter?

Does a Disorganized Mind equal being Smart?

It’s often argued that messy people are those having disorganized minds. This, in turn, has been deemed a trait of smartness and greater creativity.

Studies have been done in support of that. Results confirm that a disorganized person is more likely to be brighter than not.

This condition has been called “organized chaos” and refers to a situation where messy people take longer to find things they keep due to the cluttered or scattered nature of their rooms.

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Although it takes longer to find things they keep, their brains function better under such conditions.

More about Studies on Messy People Being Smarter

Many studies have been made about disordered surroundings and the level of creativity such conditions inspire.

For example, a University of Groningen study in 2015 linked disordered surroundings with the desire in people to be goal-oriented.

According to the findings, people are hardwired to pursue or seek order. As a result, there’s an innate need to find order in chaotic situations in both physical and abstract problems.

Another study published by the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management makes a similar case that correlates messy people with smartness.

In a study of 48 persons, these participants were asked to find unusual or creative uses for a ping-pong ball. They were divided into two rooms; one tidy and the other cluttered.

Those in tidy rooms came up with less creative uses for the ping-pong ball than participants in cluttered spaces.

Other Attributes of Persons with Disorganized Minds

While we’ve established that messy people tend to be more innovative, we’ve not pointed out other similar attributes resulting from their situation (disorganized minds).

Intelligent people tend to have multiple areas of interest in addition to scoring high on verbal IQ tests.

Information is processed chiefly via the right brain hemisphere, and such people tend to have high levels of creativity. What more? The tendency to lose track of time is another feature of messy people.

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Messy people tend to see value in diversity.

The desire to learn at all times is high, plus messy people tend to have a problem focusing when not interested. People may sometimes perceive them as know-it-alls.

Let’s discuss each of these points briefly.

i. Smart, Messy People Have Multiple Areas of Interest

Messy people tend to be bright for various reasons, including having multiple areas of interest.

Others may see this as chaos, but messy people are well-adapted to handling things simultaneously.

You’ll find such persons involved in other activities besides their primary jobs.

ii. They Score High on Verbal IQ Tests

It’s common to find messy people scoring high on verbal IQ tests. They perform best in the vocal range and come up with unique solutions quickly.

More often than not, these solutions don’t align with existing norms. This feature sets messy people apart as being smart.

iii. Information is Processed via the Right Brain Hemisphere

It has been found that messy people mainly process information via the right brain hemisphere.

The right hemisphere is mainly found to take in or absorb information at once. This is followed by a flurry of ideas that bounce off one another in mind.

This translates into real life with situations like a disorderly room, an uncoordinated way of doing things, and leaving a task halfway to handle another.

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iv. Having High Levels of Creativity

This is one of the main reasons why messy people are believed to be more innovative.

The Torrance Test of Creative Thinking (TTCT) is applied to test for high levels of creativity. A high creativity level fetches you a high score on the test battery.

Messy people have been found to ace such tests more than their more organized counterparts.

v. Tendency to Lose Track of Time

You’re messy but intelligent if you tend to lose track of time.

This situation mainly arises from being too engrossed in engaging activities. Messy people are likely to miss deadlines, making working in groups challenging.

vi. Seeing Value in Diversity

Messy people are more likely to see value in diversity. Their value of diversity isn’t only towards humans but also things or objects.

This reflects their association with friends, as such friends tend to be diverse. The desire to constantly learn may lead to a collection of objects too.

vii. Desire to Learn at all Times

One common thing with messy people is their desire to learn.

An addiction to insight is innate in such people that they always need to research and learn as much as they can. However, the learning subject must be interesting to draw their attention.

viii. Having Difficulty in Focusing due to a Lack of Interest

For messy people, interest is all that holds their attention. They find it hard to focus when something or an activity isn’t interesting enough.

This is likely to reflect in messy students at school as they need to be convinced that something is interesting to commit their attention.

ix. May be Perceived as Know-it-All

Most times, messy people are misjudged as having a know-it-all mentality. Dirty people tend to seek more creative ways of learning outside of traditional ways of doing things.

Messy people are more intelligent for the different reasons given above. We’ve seen these and how such reasons impact their everyday lives.