The idea is now accepted, including within the scientific community: intelligence is incorporated into the plural. They are no longer judged solely by IQ test results, which is too simplistic; It is not only cognitive, but also emotional, relational, or even creative. Popular with recruits, because they have been popularized so recently, these “new” intelligences are popularized by Howard Earl Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences, dating back to the early 1980s. which takes into account many different aspects of cognitive activity, and realizes that we differ from one another in our cognitive acuity and our contradictory cognitive patterns” (forms of intelligence Editions of Odile Jacob).
The theory postulates eight forms of intelligence: verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical – which correspond to rational (or academic) intelligence – but also visual-spatial, kinesthetic, inter- and intrapersonal, musical and natural. Rational intelligence, as measured by intelligence tests, combines linguistic intelligence with logical-mathematical intelligence. Emotional intelligence, which can be measured by emotional quotient (EQ) tests, can be viewed as a combination of interpersonal intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, and motor intelligence. As for creative intelligence, it will include, according to Howard Gardner, the eight intelligences.
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We all have this whole painting, even if each of us emphasizes more or less strongly one or another of these intelligences depending on the moment. Christophe Bourgeois Costantini, coach and author 10 secrets of your intelligence to give meaning to your life (First, 2020), for example, cites outstanding chef Thierry Marks, who has exceptional kinesthetic and spatial intelligence, but is also capable of executing abilities far removed from his primary work. And so, says the coach, he applies voice intelligence in his work: “I cut the rhythm, and he says, the dish is the music.” His mastery of the act has allowed him to develop great interpersonal skills, very useful for seducing a banker or clients.
If, according to Gardner, all our intelligence has a genetic component, it can all be developed and strengthened through practice. Christophe Bourgeois-Costantini agrees: “The development of one’s intelligence, on a daily basis and in company, is a way of stimulating one’s desire to do things independently, which are logical and uplifting, to achieve a greater goal. The key to personal achievement.”
Bruno Horst, a researcher of new teaching methods, defends his side for a finer approach: to mobilize his “dominant intelligence”. “Today’s idiots can succeed brilliantly tomorrow if we use more of their ‘strong intelligence,'” he jokes. Therefore, the appeal of different intelligences is within everyone’s reach, provided Christophe Bourgeois-Costantini warns, that they agree to leave their comfort zone. But he continues, “it is necessary to (re)discover abilities, even buried or neglected talents.” And find out, the most intelligent people “use at least six different intelligences.”
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Another path: Cognitive Design
The theory of multiple intelligences also has its drawbacks. According to Alexandre Busser, Partner and Head of Innovation at Humans Matter, an agency specializing in cognitive design, it presents a risk in classifying individuals according to their dominant intelligence(s). “He believes that cognitive design makes it possible to overcome these limits.” According to him, instead of intelligence, humans develop cognitive systems, which are forms of mental agility that they use according to situations. “Cognitive design, he explains, consists of remobilizing these abilities through an understanding of subjective perception, based on one’s experience.
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In management, cognitive design makes it possible to become aware of one’s own biases, give meaning to work, unite employees, or even improve one’s ability to act. At the company level, this approach makes it possible to move towards engineering perception and not take decision anymore: the processes should serve as aids to decision-making and not decide where the decision-makers are.”
Training: Put your eight brains to work
Learn to clearly distinguish your dominant talents to make better progress.
1. Action power: verbal linguistic intelligence
You own it if… You express yourself easily orally and in writing. You have a natural ability to understand and make yourself understood. You are sensitive to the vocabulary used, the syntax, the rhythm of the words as well as the humor. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture if it is described to you in words.
to stimulate it. Keep a journal of writing reports and instructions your own way; Create topographic charts (mental or indicative maps); describe pictures and diagrams aloud; Theatrical (play, improvisation, but also word games)!
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2. Thinking Power: Logical Mathematical Intelligence
You own it if… You have a Cartesian mind. You are sensitive to accuracy, facts and links between cause and effect; You are an organizer who likes numbers, symbols, and tables, as well as puzzles and strategy games. In practice, you can reproduce a gesture more easily than a sketch.
to stimulate it. Plan your projects; divide your tasks into hierarchical sections; represent process steps in graphical and symbolic form; Create topographic charts (mental map, mind map); Play (logic games, puzzle solving)!
3. The clash of images: visual-spatial intelligence
You own it if… You love to draw, design plans and even create things; You easily imagine complex environments; You have a sense of direction You are good at solving puzzles and manipulating and arranging objects in a specific space. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture after noticing it and then drawing it from different angles.
to stimulate it. Use all kinds of 2D and 3D visualizations to visualize project stages, but also thoughts and feelings; practice exercises of visualization and projection (imagine in detail how you succeed in a difficult task) and imagination (act as if); Mentally value distances, volumes, and weights…
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4. Empathy Effectiveness: Interpersonal Intelligence
You own it if… You are social. You read in the other – his emotions and intentions – as in an open book; have a strong sense of cooperation; loves to play psychics; You exude natural charisma. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture by drawing inspiration from another, by exchanging with him.
to stimulate it. IStart discussions to compare your ideas and experiences; Implementation of activities whose success depends on cooperation; Practice notes with your colleagues and family; Role-playing organization.
5. Inner strength: intelligence within personality
You own it if… You are a model of self-control. You are fully aware of your strengths and weaknesses; You learn from your victories as well as from your failures; you thirst for learning and knowledge; You enjoy solitude and be able to find your own way. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture on your own, out of sight of others, having studied it from all angles.
to stimulate it. Observe yourself from the outside (what are your relationships with others?) and from the inside (what are your feelings?); Analyze your experiences retrospectively (what method did you use to solve a problem?).
6. Sense of sound and rhythm: musical intelligence
You own it if… Music inspires you or amplifies your feelings. You are sensitive to all kinds of sounds (including silence); You can easily save melodies and rhythms and be able to reproduce them, even to create them; You can distinguish music, harmony of words and sentences, and learn foreign languages easily. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture if it is associated with one or more consonant sounds.
to stimulate it. Edit words of familiar tone; listening to a conversation, speech, or movie with your eyes closed (including foreign language); Sing, play, or listen to music frequently.
7. Effect of gestures: kinesthetic intelligence
You own it if… Gesture communication does not hold any secrets for you. You are skilled at handling things and willing to manipulate them to learn and understand; You listen to your body and you enjoy being physically active. In practice, you can easily reproduce a gesture by performing it once or twice.
to stimulate it. manipulate objects and materials to better understand them and enrich your tactile memory; Try to feel everything that the environment produces on you (a feeling of heaviness, lightness, dampness, dryness, etc.); associate the gesture with the word; Engaging in physical activity.
8. The gift of instinct and observation: natural intelligence
You own it if… It maintains a close connection with nature and the living world. You can easily distinguish and classify the elements of the plant, animal and mineral world; You are interested in the mechanisms of objects. In practice, you can more easily reproduce a gesture after studying its origin and assimilation (social, cultural, historical, etc.).
to stimulate it. Watch your surroundings carefully; Work on your ability to link, categorize, list, and prioritize items; develop your environmental citizenship; You prefer to immerse yourself in the natural environment during your holidays and travels.
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