Stupid is a word that annoys me especially when it is attached to a person. When a person refers to themselves as stupid it normally means that this is something that they have become conditioned to through reinforcement from an external source. Having experienced this and witnessed this during 6th class in primary school I can attest that it takes great strength and courage to become unconditioned. Only recently I worked with a student who referred to them self as stupid. “Big alarms ringing”. This student is so unbelievably talented in the performing arts that it shook me that he/she could even consider such a thought.  Obviously external factors are at play.  Positive developments are in progress to address this negative feeling.

Unintelligent, dense, brainless are words that appear in most definitions of the word Stupid.  Humans are born with some form of innate intelligence (Plato 4th Century, Descartes 17th Century, Chomsky 1960), therefore how can any person be stupid. According to Gardner’s (1983) Theory there are multiple intelligence.  From my work with young people and adults in addition to life experience I can guarantee that each and every person falls into one or more of these intelligence at different stages throughout their life.

So here we go let’s overview Gardner’s suggested Intelligence:


  1. Linguistic  =  Reading, writing, talking and listening the use of  
  2. Logical and Mathematical  = Numbers, science, problem solving.
  3. Bodily/ Kinaesthetic = Use of body and movement, sport and dance.
  4. Musical  = Singing, playing and composing.
  5. Interpersonal = Ability to relate and understand others.
  6. Intrapersonal = Self Awareness and understanding.
  7. Spatial = Awareness of space, objects, distance, measurements.
  8. Naturalistic = Ability to recognise objects in nature, plants and animals.

In addition to the above different Theorists suggest many other forms of intelligence including; Analytical, Creative, Practical, Fluid, and Crystallised to mention just a few. 

So the next time you are referred to as stupid or indeed hear someone else being referred to as stupid please feel free to educate the accuser by using the above information and engaging in Elegant Challenging (Thompson 2006).  You just might improve their intellect.  Continue to enjoy and develop your innate intelligence and enjoy being free from that discriminating word stupid.

Should you need assistance in discovering more about you and your unique intelligence log onto to see how we can help you.