Intelligence is a virtue that can be expressed in different ways- academically, emotionally, intellectually and socially to mention a few.
Largely, academic intelligence is proven by good grades while emotional, intellectual and social intelligence are proven by the quality of decisions made in daily life.
Below are key markers of socially intelligent people:
They know when to keep quiet: Socially intelligent people know when to keep quiet, especially when they have nothing positive, insightful or relevant to say. They are not necessarily silent all the time but silence is a ready tool in their arsenal which they use when it’s needed. When others find humour in racist, sexually gruesome and criminal jokes, they take the dignified hold on silence (if they don’t call it out).
They know when to speak up: Just as it is with silence, so it is with speaking. Socially intelligent people know when, how, where and what to speak.
They have healthy hygienic habits: By their hygienic habits, you shall know them. They do not pick their noses, reach for a hug while sweaty, tap their tongue or leave the bathroom without washing hands.
They are culturally aware: We live in a multi-cultural society and social intelligence requires basic knowledge of the cultures with whom we interact in order to have a seamless relationship with others. Respect for culture means for instance, that a lady will choose a conservative sense of style when visiting the North and possibly curtsey to elders in the southwest. You know, anything to avoid conflict.
They have the breaking news at their fingertips: The latest happenings are key ingredients when it comes to making decisions, no matter how simple. Socially intelligent people have their ears to the ground so they know which route a trailer has fallen or whether or not to cancel a trip due to a bomb attack.
They’ve got style: Sense of style is the easiest giveaway. The socially intelligent makes impressionable style choices; though these choices are not necessarily flamboyant. Whether it’s knowing what outfit suits an occasion, toning down the lipstick, gathering the hair away from the face or wearing moderate jewelry, leave it to the socially intelligent to make the right choice.
They have dignified miens: You won’t find a socially intelligent person yawning unrestricted in a public place, assuming provocative poses or pushing out lower legs backwards.
They are fussy eaters: They generally eat socially suitable foods; they know better than struggling with tough beef or weaving their way through okra.
They greet: You will hear some form of greeting from the lips of the socially intelligent- whether it’s ‘hi’, ‘hello’ or ‘good day’. They do not start off a conversation without giving honour to whom honour is due.
They are law abiding: Vehicle papers? Check! Trash users? Check! Joining the queue? Check! They are generally law-abiding citizens.
The best part of socially intelligent people is that they combine other intelligences to create a potpourri of some sorts.
It’s great to know a socially intelligent person; if you do not know any, be one.