Why Sarcastic People Are Smarter, According To Science

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smart sarcastic woman

While we may search for the signs of intelligence in those around us, we often associate intellect with a high IQ, book smarts, and wanting to learn endless knowledge.

But new research has found a link between people who are sarcastic and intelligence.

That's right, if you're fluent in sarcasm, all of those years you've spent making snarky remarks have apparently been paying off.

Because according to the results of a study published in the Journal of Applied Psychology, being able to understand sarcasm and use it like a pro, is actually a sign that you are super-intelligent and highly creative.

Yes, you can now add being a smart-a** to the list of your all-time greatest strengths!

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The team of researchers from Bar Ilan University and Technion- Israel Institute of Technology put forth their findings in a paper titled, "Others’ Anger Makes People Work Harder Not Smarter:The Effect of Observing Anger and Sarcasm on Creative and Analytic Thinking."

They explain that they conducted a series of three studies in which they analyzed the effects anger and sarcasm have on the brain.

After being separated into different groups, participants listened to audio recordings of customers who expressed their frustrations using either an angry tone or a sarcastic one.

The study found that the participants who listened to the angry customer had a higher success rate at "solving analytic problems, but [were] less successful in solving creative problems compared to participants who listened to an emotionally-neutral customer."

So, this basically means that being a sarcastic jerk, or rather, being able to keep up with the wisecracks that people throw your way, puts you ahead of the game.

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This proves what we knew all along, duh!

After all, cracking the code on your friend's angry mood is so much more fun when an extra layer of sarcasm is involved, right?

The researchers back this up even farther by saying that "comprehending sarcastic expressions requires more cognitive effort and complex thinking than understanding direct anger. Cognitive effort is required both to decode the literal meaning of the words and to interpret the nuances of the speaker’s intended and often contradictory meaning."

Futher confirming the results of this study, Francesca Gino of Harvard Business School, who has conducted her own research on the subject, told The Harvard Gazette that "sarcasm is far more nuanced, and actually offers some important, overlooked psychological and organizational benefits."

“To create or decode sarcasm," Gino says, "both the expressers and recipients of sarcasm need to overcome the contradiction (i.e., psychological distance) between the literal and actual meanings of the sarcastic expressions. This is a process that activates and is facilitated by abstraction, which in turn promotes creative thinking,”

Did you hear that? It looks like irony isn't just for the hipsters of the world anymore.

Could you be any more excited, smarty pants?

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When she isn't researching the latest viral news, lifestyle, and relationship studies, binge-watching YouTube videos (for science!) or creating vision boards on the hottest beauty and fashion trends on Pinterest, writer Cassandra Rose is nerding out over her comic books and all things Sherlock Holmes.