In the intelligence field, there is a distinction between:
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There's no age at which humans are performing at peak on all cognitive tasks - our various cognitive functions peak at different times and past a certain age it might make more sense to view adult intelligence not through the lens of youthful general processing speed and reasoning, but through the lens of expertise, wisdom, and purpose.
Most aspects of mental processing slow down as we age. While we continue to accumulate knowledge of the world at a slower rate, we gain more experience that increases our wisdom.
It’s common to think of intelligence as something that you’re simply born with. Some people, after all, make being smart look effortless.
Intelligence isn’t a set trait, though. It’s a changeable, flexible ability to learn and stimulate your brain that can improve over time. The key is to practice lifestyle habits that support and protect your brain.
"A high IQ is like height in a basketball player," says David Perkins, who studies thinking and reasoning skills at Harvard Graduate School of Education in Cambridge, Massachusetts. "It is very important, all other things being equal. But all other things aren't equal. There's a lot more to being a good basketball player than being tall, and there's a lot more to being a good thinker than having a high IQ."
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