Intellectual Laziness: Definition And Common Causes

Intellectual laziness

While it’s not always easy to find reasons to be motivated, laziness is always a choice similar to intellectual laziness. If you aren’t familiar with what intellectual laziness is, it’s being contented with where you are and not choosing your growth mentally.

In other words, you don’t choose activities that stimulate your mind into learning more and developing knowledge but rather, you stay where you are.

This means being more engaged with social media and games rather than finding ways to broaden your mind. In this article, we’ll be discussing everything you need to know about intellectual laziness.

What is intellectual laziness?

Intellectual laziness is simply not choosing ways to become better in terms of your skills and knowledge but rather, you stay in your comfort zone. You don’t bother engaging in a conversation with people who are wiser and more in-depth about things than you because talking about concepts and ideas you aren’t familiar with don’t interest you.

When you’re intellectually lazy, you don’t question or even doubt certain things about yourself like your mindset, behavior, and values towards other people and you certainly don’t bother improving them. You like staying in an area of familiarity and comfort, which generally means you won’t go out of your way to improve yourself and become better.

You stay in one area for long periods, even if it means sticking to routines and doing activities that no longer encourage your growth. You aren’t bothered by your lack of initiative and proactiveness is being better but you’re actually contented with that kind of life.

There’s nothing wrong with being entertained by social media or video games, but you spend all your time surrounded by these that you don’t bother stimulating your mind with things you can grow from or learn more about.

Common things that can cause intellectual laziness

1. Distractions

We live in a world where we’re surrounded by distractions so it’s only natural that when things like our phones distract us on a daily basis, we don’t have the time or energy to do anything else. Even if you have intentions to stimulate your mental capacity, distractions are a common cause of intellectual laziness.

This goes for distractions such as social media and video games as these two are the most popular aspects that can get in the way of doing activities that broaden your knowledge.

2. Lack of motivation

This is one of the primary factors why intellectual laziness is common in today’s age – the lack of motivation that makes it hard to get up in the morning. However, you should realize that motivation is both a state of mind and a choice and it’s nothing something you naturally have.

Everyone struggles with finding the motivation to get up and choose to go out of their comfort zones, but it’s necessary for your betterment. If you want to have an extraordinary life, then you should always find a way to choose motivation and change your mindset every day.

3. Indecisiveness

If you’re one of those individuals that don’t know what they want in life, including your career goals and the path you want to take, this could also be a cause for intellectual laziness. It’s not easy to go beyond what’s familiar, especially when you’re not yet sure of what you want to achieve.

If you have no desire to broaden your mind and expand your set of knowledge and skills, figuring out what you want in life is the key to overcoming this. For instance, people who aspire to be writers do everything to broaden their minds, which also means conversing with people better than them. Oftentimes, being secure in what you want will get you out of your intellectual laziness.

4. Poor habits and lifestyle

As cliche as this sounds, your habits and lifestyle will reflect the kind of life you want to live. Self-destructive habits and lifestyle choices such as drinking and smoking will lead you further away from being the best version of yourself.

You’re more likely to dwell in everything wrong in your life with the wrong habits rather than choose growth and knowledge in every opportunity you get. When you’re so accustomed to the wrong kind of lifestyle, it can be difficult to get yourself into opportunities that make you better. Instead, you stay stuck in where you are because frankly, it’s easier than trying to let go of poor habits.

5. Fear of failure, responsibility, and accountability

When you’re afraid of failure or taking responsibility for things, the tendency is to stay exactly where you are without taking the initiative to change your life for the better. However, you should realize that fearing failure won’t get you anywhere and it’s a necessary part of reaching success.

As for taking responsibility and accountability, at the end of the day, only you are in charge of your life. If you can’t make the necessary decisions to expand your knowledge and become better, then you won’t get anywhere near success and contentment.

6. Depression and anxiety

Lastly, it’s also possible to suffer from mental health problems that hinder your intellectual growth entirely. It’s extremely hard to think about learning new things and becoming better when you’re feeling overwhelmed with anxiety or you feel numb from feeling absolutely nothing.

It’s hard to take initiative to move forward with your life when your mind is focused on trying to feel normal and okay.


In conclusion, I hope this article was able to shed insight into everything you needed to know about intellectual laziness. It’s not always convenient to choose the path to expand your knowledge and become better, but it is necessary if you want a better life.

You can’t be contented in living your life within your comfort zone, but it’s significant that you go beyond what you’re used to, even when it’s difficult. At the end of the day, you’ll thank yourself eventually when you choose your personal growth over things that aren’t contributing to expanding your knowledge and skills.

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