I must tread carefully here…
I have to be careful when discussing the concept of left versus right brained people, as I’m married to a scientist, who also happens to be a very creative person. He was an actor when we first met, but has for a long time worked in a left-brained (academic) field: researching best-practice treatments for treating stuttering. I, by contrast, have veered more and more towards creative endeavours, especially since retiring, devoting my skills and practice to creative writing. I wouldn’t even ask my husband to try this, as he would most probably scorn the idea of it. (We ustilise both sides of the brain all the time! he’d say.)
Follow the dancing lady…
When I follow the dancing lady figure closely with my eyes — many might see it as a puerile exercise or a trick—something interesting happens. I only see her turning right. Does this clinch the deal? I’m a right-brained person!
Left-brained people are said to utilise the parts of the brain related to logic, whereas right-brained people choose the areas concerned with creativity.
Many who subscribe to this idea of left-brained versus right-brained, believe that we are born with a particular leaning towards one or the other hemisphere. However, I see this distinction as partly metaphorical, rather than literal. That is, we are probably utilising both hemispheres of the brain all of the time, when working mentally, thinking and using language. But certain tracts or pathways might be forged differently, certainly over time, for the creative versus the logical thinker.
Genetic or not?
Our daughter has inherited the two faculties in perfect measure: she can swing between a logical way of thinking and a creative approach whenever she chooses to. However, her preferred path is the creative one. She is a very good artist, has always been attracted to drama, fashion, interior design, and communicating with friends and with people in general. She would not be happy sitting behind a desk, studying or working at a “monotonous” job. Yet, the following photo of her kiosk, part of a business plan she is constructing, required her to use skills that draw on both traditional left and right sides of the brain when required. The overall impact of the business will be based on her gifted creative skills. Have I mentioned that she is also a very good critical and analytical thinker?
Are You a Creative or Logical Thinker?
Overall, I’m probably a creative, rather than a logical thinker. Yet I’ve excelled in academic pursuits at certain points in my life, when I’ve chosen to do so. At this stage in life, I have chosen to follow my goal of mastering creative writing (fiction and memoir) now that I have retired from full-time language/linguistic work. And recently, in every survey I’ve filled in relating to this topic, I’ve been shown to fall on the side of “right-brained” rather than “left-brained”. But only just. That is, I’m using all of my brain, all of the time, but I’m currently favouring creativity, over logical thinking. And it shows!