10 subtle signs of a wise person that are easy to miss

Most of the time, people mistake being smart to be the same as being wise. But what most people don’t realize is that although they are similar, they are not exactly the same.

Someone “smart” is considered to be intelligent, right? But “wise,” on the other hand, is someone who does not only acquire knowledge but also has experience and good judgment, leading to very enriching experiences.

In this article, we’ll discuss 10 subtle signs of a wise person that are easy to miss. Are you curious to see if you have these traits too? Keep on reading!

1) Wise people know they don’t have all the answers

One of the most overlooked signs of wisdom is the ability to recognize that we do not have all the answers. Wise people understand that there’s always more to learn and that the quest for knowledge is never complete.

They’re not afraid to admit what they don’t know and are open to learning from others. Their humility enables them to seek broader horizons and to continue growing as individuals.

So how does not knowing the answers make a man wise? You see, it’s not about what a person knows or doesn’t. It’s about what they experienced and what they seek. Wise people might not know everything, but they don’t ever stop!

2) They can see things from different perspectives

Apart from being humble, this kind of person understands that there’s always more than one perspective on any given issue.

Have you ever felt so strongly about a particular issue? It might be about politics or something you saw on the news… Sometimes, we can get so caught up with our worldview that we tend to forget the other side.

But wise people know that in every story, there cannot only be just one side. They understand that their thoughts and opinions are based only on one perspective.

They acknowledge the fact that the thoughts and opinions of other individuals are based solely on the information that they have and their own experiences.

That’s why if you see conflicts or clashes, these people are the first to bridge the gaps because they know that viewpoints can be misunderstood.

3) They tend to have good judgment

Having a grasp of other people’s perspectives can help wise people to make good judgments. They have a deep understanding of human nature and a strong sense of intuition. They can read people and situations properly and with so much depth that’s why they can weigh out their options.

They are not impulsive or reactive, but instead, they take their time to consider all the facts before making a decision. They don’t act based solely on their emotions since they think things through.

Whenever you’re overcome by emotion, do you take a pause before doing something? How often do you just sit down and reflect before you act?

Wise people also have an excellent sense of judgment when it comes to themselves. They know their limitations and strengths and are not afraid to ask for help when needed. 

4) They learn from their mistakes

myths on success that holding you back 10 subtle signs of a wise person that are easy to miss

And when you have good judgement, you’d be more open and accountable to owning and learning from past mistakes.

When we hear the word “wise,” most of the time, people envision someone who knows almost everything.

Now, this may come off as a surprise for some of you, but just like any other human being, a wise person makes mistakes. And it is in those mistakes that they acquire the knowledge they need and the guidance they give.

Wise people understand that bad decisions are an essential part of the learning process. They do not beat themselves up when they make one, instead, they use it as an opportunity to learn and grow. 

5) They find solutions

What sets these people apart from the crowd when they make mistakes? They can offer solutions. Wise people are problem-solvers. They don’t dwell on issues but rather focus their energies on finding solutions.

Can you recall the last time you were dealing with a difficult situation? How did you react?

I think being self-aware of how we deal with conflict is a step towards the wisdom that someday we hope to have. 

And it might be hard to believe, but wise people also get frustrated from time to time. But unlike most people, they find a way out rather than just complain. Because really, what good is complaining, right?

6) They appreciate the little things

Once you’ve committed yourself to finding solutions, becoming grateful and appreciative of what you have will come naturally to you. And that is one of the cornerstones of wisdom.

Wise people have a deep appreciation for the simple things in life. They understand that happiness does not come from material possessions or wealth but from the people and experiences in their lives.

They take time to enjoy the small things, such as a beautiful sunset or a good meal. They are grateful for what they have and do not take anything for granted.

So many people try to find happiness in the wrong places. Some believe that the more famous they get, the happier they will be. But guess what?

At the end of the day, most of them end up miserable. Why? Because fame, money and power cannot give you happiness.

Wise people know that in order to be happy, you have to be able to appreciate what you already have.

7) They are good at communication

Adding to the list of the qualities of a wise person is being good at communication. Wise people listen carefully to what others have to say and are not quick to judge.

You know how in movies, wise men are the ones the characters go to for advice and actually listen to? Even the most stubborn ones listen to them. Do you know why? Because they are good communicators.

They’re so good at sharing their experiences and excellent at listening. They listen to what people have to say and actually pay attention. Because of that, they know how to communicate properly with the people and as a result, they can inspire other people’s actions and decisions.

8) They are patient

art of living in the present moment 1 10 subtle signs of a wise person that are easy to miss

Of course, these traits wouldn’t be complete without patience, a virtue that wise people have in abundance.

They understand that some things take time and that rushing things can lead to mistakes. And so they’re not easily frustrated when things do not go as planned, but instead, they remain calm and composed.

Observe yourself the next time you’re standing in line, waiting for your order, or sitting behind someone who’s taking too much time… Are you quick to lose your temper?

Wise people know that good things come to those who wait, and they respect as well as understand the importance of the process – no matter how long it may be.

9) They don’t judge – at least not negatively

And with patience comes tolerance and acceptance of other people’s flaws and mistakes too. We’ve all heard the phrase, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” 

They know you can’t judge someone or something based solely on what you see. They know that viewing people or looking into situations through a narrow lens can lead to misunderstandings and conflicts.

Ask yourself, when was the last time you looked beyond the surface? A true mark of wisdom would be to wait before jumping to conclusions about another person.

10) They are emotionally intelligent

And finally, wise people know how to be responsible for other people’s reactions, as they have heightened sensitivity and understanding, making them emotionally intelligent.

You could easily relate this to people in your family… Can you recall who among your relatives can be level-headed and tries to look into all sides of a petty argument? The ones who usually become bridges, although they have no stake in it?

That’s because these people understand their emotions and how to manage them effectively, as well as the emotions of others and how to respond to them appropriately. 

They’re also skilled at managing conflict, recognizing that it’s a natural part of relationships and are not afraid to address it. They use their emotional intelligence to find common ground and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

Final thoughts

Ultimately, I hope you remember that wisdom is not always easy to spot at first glance. It can be hidden in subtle signs that we often overlook.

But once we start paying attention to these signs, we can learn a lot from the wise people around us. From their ability to listen carefully to their thoughtful approach to decision-making and their humility in admitting their mistakes, there’s much to learn from those who possess wisdom.

The good news is that it’s not an inherent trait that only a lucky few are born with – it can be developed through a lifetime of learning and experience.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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