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The sound of falling left or right

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“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving” ~ Albert Einstein

 / 22 hours ago

Daniel H. Pink, author of several bestselling books about the changing work world, drew on international research regarding left brainers vs. right brainers and compiled it in his book A Whole New Mind.

“The left hemisphere controls the right side of the body, is sequential, specializes in text, and analyzes the details,” writes Pink. “The right hemisphere controls the left side of the body, is simultaneous, specializes in context, and synthesizes the big picture.”

Lead Life Institute’s founder and author of Right Brain/Left Brain Leadership and Right Brain/Left Brain President Dr. Mary Lou Décosterd further describes the differences between right and left brainers: “You could say that left brainers are more focused on the here and now.They are more verbal, tangible (need to see it to believe it), and pragmatic. Right brainers are visionaries and innovators, interested in what might or could be. They are more intuitive and emotional — they trust their gut.”

She further explains how this relates to leadership. “Left brain leaders excel in and target the sheer volume of a leader’s day-to-day tactical demands. Left brain leadership is about in-the-moment planning, communicating, stabilizing and driving,” she told us. “Right brain leaders excel in and target the development of a desired state. Right brain leaders look out at possibilities and from those possibilities identify opportunities for change.”

Andrea Learned, a sustainable business leadership and marketing to women expert, told us that gender has had a traditional role in what people perceive left and right brain thinking to be. “Women are thought to ‘tend’ to be guided by those right hemisphere characteristics. Meanwhile, men are thought to ‘tend’ to be guided by the more left hemisphere characteristics, because that is what they’ve traditionally been most rewarded for (making money, winning, thinking linearly…),” Learned said. “If you look at social media and social business today, it is pretty clear that the right hemisphere characteristics will find more of the reward in the 21st century.”

Is it possible to use your whole brain? Would doing so create some sort of superhuman? Dr. Décosterd says President Obama is a good example of someone who uses both. “His is a fully integrated right and left brain approach. While high level leaders can be adept at certain right  and left brain abilities, most leaders get caught up in their preferences…More to the point, a leader is less likely to shift style from right to left brain thinking or vice versa with the ease as Obama does.”

So can someone who tends to be more of a right brainer train themselves to develop their left brain and vice versa? Dr. Décosterd believes so. “The best way to encourage a shift in brain style is to make your brain more pliable. To do so you could introduce novel stimulus to your brain — new sights, tastes, scents for example, as well as being OPEN to new ways of thinking — listen to differing views without being dismissive,” she told us. “Another way to encourage a shift is through engaging in behaviors that are more alter-brain.”

What kind of thinker are you? Left brain, right brain, or both? Last week, we asked you to give us some examples of each. After receiving a ton of feedback via Twitter and Facebook (and after much deliberation), we’ve selected a few of the many great examples you gave us to create this updated version of the infographic.

 

Also, be sure to take a look at some of the explorations of how the infographic came to be below.

Creative Leader versus Do Leadership Infographic from Mindjet

Happy waiting

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 Are you ready to.. Wait?

 

The Joys of Waiting

I hate waiting. Most people I know hate waiting. Life is full of waiting: we wait for loved ones to come home, we wait for movies to start, we wait in lines at groceries, banks, or the DMV. We wait to hear the results of tests at school, and the results of tests about our health.  Right now my love is waiting to find out if a new job will come through, unable to make commitments until he a5bf950448372b7a778f89216c198160does. As writers, we wait for the muse to strike, we wait to hear back about a submission, we wait to see if anyone will discover our work, and we wait to learn if they love it as we do. All this waiting creates an often excruciating sense of anticipation, anxiety, or dread. It puts us in a state of suspended animation, of limbo: we understand, while in this limbo, why Dante used that term to describe the experience of being in neither Heaven nor Hell, of being profoundly uncertain of where one will wind up.

So, in an exercise of deep spiritual dedication, I thought I’d better come up with the top ten joys of waiting. You know, turn this thing on its head. Take a deep breath (well, maybe not if you’re waiting in line at the DMV) and find what we can love about limbo.

Top Ten Joys of Waiting

10. Any waiting room, anywhere, can serve as an object lesson in how NOT to decorate a room for the comfort and pleasure of its occupants.

9. The “take a number” machine reminds you of your first trip to Baskin-Robbins Thirty-One Flavors as a kid. (Oh, would there be any Bubble Gum or Peppermint Stick ice cream left by the time it was your turn?)

8. The conversation you eavesdrop on while in line provides excellent inspiration for dialogue between the two least-educated characters in your work-in-progress.

7. In an hour spent staring at your toes, you are taken on an emotional journey from rejection to acceptance, from “my toes are hideous!” to “I kind of like my left pinkie toe” to “my toes are beautiful, just the way they are.”

6. You finally have time to read your friends’ Facebook posts. (Although you regret, deeply and forever, looking up “twerk” on YouTube, as your friend recommended.)

5. You realize you have a great excuse to say “no” to invitations to upcoming events you were dreading anyway. “No, I’m sorry, I’m still waiting to hear about [fill in the blank], and I’d hate to take up someone else’s spot at your third cousin’s bat mitzvah, the one with the Klezmer Captain and Tennille cover band, only to have to cancel on you at the last minute.”

man4. You realize you have a great excuse not to start cleaning the bathroom, because that phone call might come any minute, and you can’t answer the phone with your hands covered in Comet.

3. The anxiety from waiting gives you the energy to organize the hall closet. (Hey, your partner/roommate/kid can take that giant garbage bag of stuff to Goodwill. You’re done, you’ve earned a cold beer/dish of ice cream/nap.)

2. You make up six new verses to “American Pie.” In your waiting-induced mild psychosis, you think they’re better than the original.

1. Suddenly, a voice cuts through all the fear, anxiety, anticipation, or dread, and reminds you of everything you have to be grateful for, right in this moment: the ability to breathe, to worry, to create lists, to laugh, and to love.

two empty chairs lakeside at sunset

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The charity jungle needs a compass reader

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Some of my friends and I, have wanted to find out where the best place to give our money would be. There are enough tales about corruption and money disappearing for me to do some research on the subject, and I thought one way of starting this research was by letting you write what you give your money too, and maybe even comment on why the charity gagayou have chosen, is a good choice!