7 signs you’re becoming a wiser person, according to psychology

Mia Zhang by Mia Zhang | June 6, 2024, 10:04 am

You might look back on your life and struggle to pinpoint the moments of transformation or feel unsure if you’re truly becoming wiser or not.

How do you know if what you’re experiencing is truly a sign of wisdom, or just the normal ebbs and flows of life?

After delving into the realm of psychology and reflecting on my personal journey, I’ve compiled a list of 7 signs that could indicate you’re becoming a wiser person.

If these resonate, rejoice! You are on the path to wisdom and self-discovery.

1) Embracing uncertainty

As we grow, we often seek comfort in the predictable and familiar.

We crave certainty and are unnerved by the unknown. However, a wiser person understands that life is, by nature, uncertain.

This doesn’t mean accepting chaos or relinquishing control. Rather, it’s about acknowledging that we can’t predict or control everything and finding peace within that realization. 

It’s about taking life as it comes, learning from every experience, and understanding that plans may change – and that’s okay.

Acceptance of uncertainty reflects a mature mind. It shows an ability to adapt and a willingness to grow – key components of wisdom. 

2) Accepting imperfections

Wise people understand that no one is perfect – not others, and certainly not themselves. They know that mistakes and flaws are not signs of weakness, but opportunities for growth and learning.

They see imperfections not as failings, but as integral parts of who they are.

Psychology tells us that this acceptance of imperfection reflects a strong sense of self-awareness and self-compassion – qualities that are integral to wisdom. 

If you’re starting to accept your imperfections and see them as opportunities rather than failings, take heart! You’re growing wiser.

3) Practicing patience

In our fast-paced world, patience may seem like an outdated virtue. 

We’re often encouraged to desire instant gratification and quick results. But a wiser person understands the value of patience and the power it holds.

This doesn’t mean being passive or complacent. Instead, it’s about understanding that good things often take time. It’s about knowing when to act and when to wait, when to speak and when to listen.

Patience is a sign of emotional intelligence and self-control, both key components of wisdom. 

4) Valuing experiences over possessions

It’s a fact that as people age and grow wiser, they tend to value experiences like traveling, learning new skills, or spending quality time with loved ones more than acquiring material possessions.

This isn’t about shunning all material goods or living an ascetic life. Instead, it’s about understanding that experiences enrich our lives and contribute to our personal growth in ways that material possessions can’t.

Psychology supports this, as experiences are known to foster happiness and fulfillment more than material goods. 

5) Enduring pain

Life is beautiful, but it also has its share of hardships and heartbreaks. While our instinct might be to avoid pain, a wiser person understands that pain is an inevitable part of the human experience.

This isn’t about glorifying suffering or denying the need for healing. It’s about recognizing that our pains, our struggles, and our scars are part of who we are. They shape us, they teach us, and they often lead us to grow in ways we never anticipated.

Psychology acknowledges that resilience – the ability to endure pain and bounce back – is a hallmark of a mature and wise mind. 

If you find yourself enduring pain with resilience, and learning from it rather than running from it, take a moment to acknowledge your growth.

6) Listening more, speaking less

In a world where everyone is eager to voice their opinions, it might seem counterproductive to remain silent. But a wise person understands the power of listening.

This doesn’t mean suppressing your own voice or opinions. Rather, it’s about taking the time to truly hear others, to understand their perspectives and learn from them. 

It’s about knowing that sometimes, the wisest response is not a clever rebuttal, but attentive silence.

Psychology asserts that active listening is a key aspect of effective communication and empathy – both integral to wisdom. 

7) Learning to let go

Throughout life, we accumulate a variety of things – not just physical possessions, but also relationships, grudges, regrets, and expectations. However, a wise person understands the importance of letting go.

This isn’t about giving up or forgetting. It’s about freeing yourself from the weight of past hurts, disappointments, or unfulfilled expectations.

It’s about understanding that holding onto these things only hinders our growth and happiness.

The ability to let go and move on is a sign of emotional maturity and resilience.

A deeper dive into wisdom

Wisdom is a complex, multifaceted concept that goes beyond the mere accumulation of knowledge. 

It’s an intricate blend of understanding, reflection, experience, and intuition. It’s about the ability to find meaning in life’s events and to understand the world around us on a deeper level.

At its core, wisdom involves a shift in perspective – from being centered on the self to considering the broader picture. This includes understanding others’ perspectives, empathizing with their experiences, and accepting the complexity and diversity of human experience.

It also involves a sense of humility. It’s realizing that no matter how much we know, there’s always more to learn. It’s about accepting our limitations and understanding that we don’t have all the answers – and that’s okay.

We often live in extremes – love or hate, joy or sorrow, peace or conflict. But wisdom teaches us the value of balance. It helps us understand that life is not black or white but a spectrum of greys.

Perhaps most importantly, wisdom is about living authentically. It’s about being true to ourselves, standing by our values, and leading a life that aligns with our beliefs and principles. 

This authenticity brings a sense of inner peace and contentment that is both rare and precious.

In essence, becoming wiser is an ongoing journey rather than a destination. It’s a process of continuous learning, growing, evolving, and blossoming into the best version of ourselves.

So if you identify with some or all of these signs mentioned above, take a moment to appreciate your growth.

You’re becoming wiser, stronger, and more resilient every day. 

Embrace this journey and continue to cultivate your wisdom with openness, curiosity, and compassion.