Does the sound of someone chewing make you want to punch through a wall? Have you almost walked out of a movie theater because the person eating popcorn next to you sounded more like a horse than a human? If you said yes to these, you're probably a creative genius, according to study from Northwestern University.
The study confirms what those of us who hate loud chewing have known for a long time: That we're smarter (and have better manners) than those who chomp chips like there's no tomorrow.
Researchers surveyed 100 participants before drawing their conclusions. They monitored how participants reacted to a number of noises, and then asked them to complete a Creative Achievement Questionnaire. The study found that the participants' "answers revealed a strong link between those with the most creative answers and achievements and those sensitive to background noise."
According to the Telegraph, the study also looked into the habits of "creative geniuses such as Charles Darwin, Anton Chekhov and novelist Marcel Proust" who each had aversions to background noises. Proust, they wrote, went so far as to cover "his bedroom with cork to block out noise whilst he worked."
"The propensity to filter out `irrelevant' sensory information ... happens early and involuntarily in brain processing and may help people integrate ideas that are outside the focus of attention, leading to creativity in the real world," Darya Zabelina told the Telegraph.
So, the next time someone is chewing loudly and you're about to snap, just remind yourself that you're a creative genius and they're not.