Book Smart Vs Street Smart or Both? – The Two Important Aspects Of Smartness

When it comes to smartness, it can be divided down into two broad categories. One is book smarts whereas the other is street smarts.

Book smarts refer to the education, schooling and other kinds of knowledge that one has acquired. It solely is a theoretical understanding of facts or ideas.

Whereas, street smarts refers to the experiential knowledge on things. While which one is more helpful can be a matter of debate and also depends on the context, it is generally seen that street smarts weigh more on the scale when it comes to making one’s way to success.

We all go to school and college for education and to increase our prospects of getting a job. There are some who excel in academics and land up with a job that pays well. But book smarts can only get you as far. A practical and rational understanding of your situation is what you need to push yourself forward.

Street smarts rely more on intuition in order to plan their next move. According to them, their real-life experiences are their primary sources of knowledge.

They never hold on to what is written in a book as something sacred and to be followed. The main distinction between the two is the difference between the sources of their knowledge. Book smarts derive their knowledge from theories and books and street smarts from experiences.

Relying on theoretical knowledge all the time can lead up to disastrous consequences because a little pragmatism is always necessary to analyze your current situation and determine what you are going to do next. An ability to do math can help you through a test but it becomes redundant when it comes to getting yourself out of an unfortunate situation.

It is also a myth that you need to excel in school in order to earn a lot. Neither Steve Jobs nor Mark Zuckerberg had college degrees and yet they were billionaires.

What you rather need is the courage to take risks and survive accordingly. You need to understand that when you are reading a book you’re having a look at someone else’s perspective. It doesn’t matter how intelligent the writer himself/herself is as we all are different people in different situations. Someone else’s approach to life might not necessarily work in ours.

Book smarts are people who are more adept at following rules than leading. They can store information, rote formulas and can work hard when given a definite objective.

There are incapable of making quick decisions based on foresight and instinct. The more you are informed about your surroundings the less exposed you shall be dangers and the risk of failures.

The ability to read into other people’s natures can help you make the right impression in your workplace and moreover, there can be no replacement for hard-earned experiences as you can truly learn about things by failing and then trying to understand where you went wrong and avoiding such mistakes in the future.

But it would indeed be wrong to dismiss book smarts as something entirely useless. It must be understood that both of them are complementary to one another and require to exist in the right proportion in order to reach success.

The ideal scenario would be where you are conscious of your own situation and at the same time utilizing what you learn theoretically to improve your decision-making power.


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Book Smart Vs Street Smart or Both? - The Two Important Aspects Of Smartness
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