Mood disorders and mental imperfections may stem from high intelligence and natural talent.
The cost of intelligence, rumour has it, is insanity. Well, not exactly, but I got your attention so listen.
First of all, I hope you don’t take offense of my use words like, ‘madness’ or ‘lunacy’. If it makes you feel better, I’m mad as well. Now, let’s turn our attention back to our smarts.
There is a high cost for being intelligent. I don’t speak of intelligence from the classroom, per say. True intelligence is usually there long before the school years. There are characteristics which brand a person of intellectual nature. Now, we’ve established that.
It’s kind of complicated, in a way, but it would stand to reckon that when an individual is smart, they suffer from an over-abundance of thoughts-hence mental. Sometimes these thoughts are in disarray, fumbling over each other and striving for the spotlight. I guess this sounds silly, but imagine thoughts as millions of ants, all trying to get at the top of the pile.
These are the thoughts of a highly intelligent person, but one who may lack the ability to focus. This is where we encounter our point. Mood disorders, mental imperfections and awkward personalities may stem from an intelligent mind.
Psychologists have found that childhood high IQs are linked to early adulthood bipolar disorder. Although bipolar disorder is thought to be primarily genetic, being triggered by childhood trauma, now there’s a link to high IQ scores as well.
So, how did we test this?
To test the facts about childhood IQ and its connection with bipolar disorder, 1,881 children, age 8, were followed until they reached their early 20s. Along the way, IQ was measured and characteristics of mood disorders were recorded. Just a 10-point difference made a change in adult mental health. There were signs of bipolar mania. So, it’s true. All along the roadway of development those test subjects can quote ‘Queen’.
“I’m going slightly mad.”
Mad Creative Intelligence
Professor Daniel Smith, one of the authors of the study, reported,
A possible link between bipolar disorder, intelligence and creativity have been discussed for many years and studies have suggested a link.
Creativity has indeed been lumped with lunacy. As you know, art of all kinds has been an indicator of some sort of mood disorder. In fact, many artists, like Van Gogh, have displayed symptoms of mood disorders and we know how talented he was. Poets, like Poe, displayed symptoms of depression as well.
Yes, I know we are talking about intelligence, but there’s a link here somewhere – a connection of the three – intelligence, mental illness and creativity. It takes a great mind to be able to tap into emotions needed for awe-inspiring works of art.
The truth of the matter
Of course, it’s not cut and dry. There is a clear connection, but we need to understand why. There are other factors, childhood adversity and drug use, which can trigger mood disruptions, namely bipolar disorder. The thing is, this could make others assume that those with bipolar disorder have a weak mind and cannot cope with the trauma and stress in life.
On the contrary, those with bipolar disorder strive for a perfect world while fully aware of the immortal imperfections that will always remain. They just think too much and are aware of things that they rather not know.
Maybe I’m an advocate for mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder, and that’s because I suffer myself. There’s not one day that I’m free from racing thoughts, sleeplessness and strange bouts of inhuman energy – that’s the ordeal. Could I be intelligent? I have no idea, I don’t like to assume those things about myself. But yeah, there’s a price to pay and a huge one.
Appreciating great minds
The objective would be, in my opinion, to study these indicators so that children can learn how to control this massive amount of information that swirls within their brains. Also, raising awareness of this theory can speak volumes, and finding fact is key.
For the rest, being kind and killing the stigma of mental illnesses, such as bipolar disorder, will bring acceptance of our intelligence. After all, we’re in this together… how cliché. :)
Copyright © 2012-2019 Learning Mind. All rights reserved. For permission to reprint, contact us.