Brain Power - what makes a genius? Curiosity, passion, hard work, and persistence bordering on obsession, according to a recently completed large scale study of humanity’s most impressive thinkers. It’s not about formal education, but about insatiable curiosity and a relentless drive to find answers. Another common trait among them is that they never waste even a single minute, squeezing the most out of every precious moment life affords them.
"Successful creative people tend to have two things in abundance, curiosity and drive. They are absolutely fascinated by their subject, and while others may be more brilliant, their sheer desire for accomplishment is the decisive factor," writes Tom Butler-Bowdon.Howard Gardner, who studied geniuses like Picasso, Freud, and Stravinsky, found a similar pattern of analyzing, testing, and feedback used by all of them: “Creative individuals spend a considerable amount of time reflecting on what they are trying to accomplish, whether or not they are achieving success (and, if not, what they might do differently).”
Finally, genius means sacrifice. “My study reveals that, in one way or another, each of the creators became embedded in some kind of a bargain, deal, or Faustian arrangement, executed as a means of ensuring the preservation of his or her unusual gifts. In general, the creators were so caught up in the pursuit of their work mission that they sacrificed all, especially the possibility of a rounded personal existence,” says Gardner.”