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I believe that the engine that drives us forward is our IQ. Increasing it will result in a higher productivity rate so I'd like to know what are the general steps that will put a person on that path. Thank you!

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More than likely, you're just learning how to be better at taking an IQ test. – JeffO May 7 '13 at 12:58

So I've always considered IQ to be pretty innate, but has other ideas:

In general, educational interventions, as those described below, have shown short-term effects on IQ, but long-term follow-up is often missing. For example, in the US very large intervention programs such as the Head Start Program have not produced lasting gains in IQ scores. More intensive, but much smaller, projects Abecedarian Project have reported lasting effects, often on Socioeconomic status variables, rather than IQ.[36]

A placebo controlled double-blind experiment found that vegetarians who took 5 grams of creatine per day for six weeks showed a significant improvement on two separate tests of fluid intelligence, Raven's Progressive Matrices, and the backward digit span test from the WAIS. The treatment group was able to repeat longer sequences of numbers from memory and had higher overall IQ scores than the control group. The researchers concluded that "supplementation with creatine significantly increased intelligence compared with placebo."[60] A subsequent study found that creatine supplements improved cognitive ability in the elderly.[61] However, a study on young adults (0.03 g/kg/day for six weeks, e.g., 2 g/day for 150-pound individual) failed to find any improvements.[62]

Recent studies have shown that training in using one's working memory may increase IQ. A study on young adults published in April 2008 by a team from the Universities of Michigan and Bern supports the possibility of the transfer of fluid intelligence from specifically designed working memory training.[63][64] Further research will be needed to determine nature, extent and duration of the proposed transfer. Among other questions, it remains to be seen whether the results extend to other kinds of fluid intelligence tests than the matrix test used in the study, and if so, whether, after training, fluid intelligence measures retain their correlation with educational and occupational achievement or if the value of fluid intelligence for predicting performance on other tasks changes. It is also unclear whether the training is durable of extended periods of time.[65]

My personal take is this - treat your IQ like it's pretty set in stone, and consentrate on the contextual factors. None of the results above aare life-changing....

Consider the idea of 'effective IQ' - if you are tired you might only be working at 70% of your capacity - so making sure you get enought rest is probably a lot easier than trying to increase your IQ by 42% to compensate... Similarly, if you are spending some of your working memory keeping pertinate numbers 'in your head' - then a pen and paper might increase your effective IQ by quite some margin...

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Seems to me that IQ is mostly fixed, but it can be reduced by health problems. Improving your health, having a balanced diet (or simply enough nutrition, in poor countries) helps you reach your potential, but that's it. On the other hand, IQ does not translate to productivity directly, there are many other things -- motivation, rationality, networking, avoiding procrastination... -- so instead of IQ worship, let's just focus on those. – Viliam Búr May 14 '13 at 14:26

Take lots of IQ tests. They're supposed to be tests of your creativity and mental ability, but they're standardized to some degree because the results need to be repeatable. All of them follow some pattern.

Take basketball as an analogy. You can't possibly train every shot from every position blocked by people of different sizes and techniques. But the more shots you take, the more of them get into the basket.

While practicing IQ tests won't give you a perfect IQ, it will certainly improve your score.

Remember, the people with the highest IQ are the ones who make the tests.

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Good analogy. Like any skill, it requires plenty of practice to become an expert. – Gaʀʀʏ Aug 20 '13 at 21:00
Then again, practicing for specific IQ tests will only make you good at taking IQ tests. It will not improve your real life skills that you need to solve problems that haven't been solved before. – Juha Untinen Oct 23 '15 at 12:32

Doing IQ exercises are proven to increase the brain's capacity in several areas. Do crosswords, sudokus, SAT practice exams, mensa tests, etc.

Do take into consideration that the tests should be varied and timed so that you constantly challenge and improve yourself

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i will avoid textbook answer in this regard. i think that it is the habit of using your mind more and more. very importantly it is active and happy lifestyle( you cannot have a high IQ when you are unhappy). IQ will decrease dramatically if you are depressed or anxious. also it is more exposure to things. it is doing the things that matter most in your life. also very important to know a brilliant medical researcher in cancer maybe not be that brilliant in lot of other fields.

also inborn genius is a reality. but i think that iq is also your grooming from the very early age. first by your parents and school , secondly your personal grooming when you become seeing the world with your eyes. initially, intentionally the child should be giving more responsibilities. they should be giving the situations in which they should be encourage to use their mind more and more. I think the parent and the school can do limitless things for the child. more develop nations are investing more and more in this regards.

as an adult what my take is that the more the person get out of his comfort zone the more confident he feel and the more happy he will get that will automatically lead him to use his mind horse power more. food is very much underestimated in this regards. there are many vegetables and fruits in this world that boast your mental capacity. it would be nice to go to some nutritionist and set some plan from him to consume more and more such food at appropriate time. set some time to exercise everyday. learn some thing new every year. At-last summing up it is very important to being happy and contended that will lead to a higher iq.

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I think you'll find that you can definitely have a high IQ while being unhappy. Some of the individuals I know through Mensa are unhappy because of their high IQ (as it can lead to alienation) – Rory Alsop May 8 '13 at 13:35

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