Signs you’re “left-brain dominant” and how to make good use of it

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

ThoughtCo / Hilary Allison

  • M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia
  • B.A., History, Armstrong State University

While there are differences of opinion when it comes to brain hemisphere dominance, one thing seems clear: there are some students who are more comfortable with logic and reasoning than they are with creativity and intuition. These preferences are characteristic of people who are sometimes called left brain dominant.

Are you very organized? Do you believe that there is a right way and a wrong way to do things? Do you enjoy math homework more than English homework? If so, you may be left-brain dominant.

Characteristics of Left Brain Dominant Students

  • Work well with a daily task list
  • Tend to be the critic in class
  • Consider themselves naturally good at math or science
  • Are rational and logical
  • Perform research that is precise and well-documented
  • Enjoy setting goals
  • Find it easy to interpret information
  • Have a neat and tidy room
  • Answer questions spontaneously
  • Like to read and follow directions
  • Tend to be less emotionally open
  • Can listen to a long lecture without losing interest
  • Prefer action movies to romantic comedies
  • Tend to sit up when they read
  • Use precise language

Left Brain Dominant Students in Class

  • Find it easy to remember dates and processes
  • Enjoy going through long math calculations
  • Prefer the logical order of science
  • Excel at understanding grammar and sentence structure

Advice for Left Brain Dominant Students

  • Study in a quiet room to avoid distraction.
  • If you become impatient trying to explain concepts to other students, don’t volunteer to tutor classmates.
  • If you like to take the lead in study groups, you might enjoy volunteer work.
  • Try to find opportunities to participate in the debate team, science fair, or math league.
  • When reading for pleasure, you might prefer non-fiction books.
  • Be aware that you might be more comfortable with factual questions and assignments, as opposed to open-ended questions.
  • Use your organization skills to keep your class notes and papers organized.
  • Keep your room organized to maintain order in your personal space.
  • Even if you disagree, try to refrain from arguing with your teachers.
  • When selecting assignments, choose analytical essays instead of creative writing.
  • If you find yourself frustrated with other students who don’t take their work seriously, work alone if possible.
  • Be aware that you might find “free-thinking” teachers confusing.
  • Finally, take more risks and don’t be afraid to be creative.

With all of your factual knowledge, you might be a finalist on Jeopardy someday.

Left-brained people are smarter. Right?

Almost everything I thought I knew about right and left brain activity has been stood on its head (so to speak!) by a recent article in my local newspaper. I knew that left-brain dominant people tended to be logical, rational and organized, and that right-brain dominance fosters creativity, imagination and artistry. That about sums up my preconceived notions.

Now I learn that our brains, contrary to popular belief, are not actually divided into two spheres. But the neocortex is, and it makes up two-thirds of the brain. The explanation of what goes on there might take a left-brain dominant person to understand, but essentially the neocortex is the most advanced part of the brain. It determines how we think, and whether we are “right-brained” or “left-brained.” Dominance decides how the entire neocortex works. Left-brain dominant people are more likely to be clinical and cold in their judgments and problem solving. Language recognition is a function of the left hemisphere, too, and that makes languages easier for those with left-brain dominance.

But strangely enough, the left brain is wired to the right brain; the left brain controls the right brain.

Logic is not the only attribute of left-brain dominance; there are more specific characteristics, too. Some are unexpected. For example, left-brained people are likely to be dog lovers, and prefer classical music. They also cannot be hypnotized. Lawyers, judges and bankers tend to be left-brained.

So much for the left-brainers. What about the rest of us? The right hemisphere is associated with creativity, emotion and intuition. It also controls the left side of the body, so right-brained people are often left-handed. Right-brain dominant people are characterized as artistic, innovative and often random. Their thought processes are sometimes viewed as irregular and roundabout, but use of “free association” often breeds originality and inventiveness. Certain occupations are associated with right-brained people, including politics, acting and athletics. Many occupations that require creative thinking, perceptiveness and spontaneity are in the field of the right-brain dominant.

In schools, left-brained ways of thinking are generally favored over right-brained, primarily because of the logical and analytical skills of left-brained students. Right brain focused curricula concentrate on the visual and artistic, using metaphors, movement and role-playing. Again, certain specific characteristics are commonly found in right-brain dominant individuals, such as being good at art or sports, and being able to memorize words or lyrics easily. They can also be hypnotized.

But are we really one or the other? We are not. A lot of what we consider either left or right brain activity is actually being done on both sides. In fact, most people are more or less equal on both sides of the brain; take the example of a scientist who is analytical and good at math, so he is characterized as being left-brained. However, he also is creative in making up and evaluating experiments, characteristic of the right-brained.

A label of left- or right-brained is not important; people should not let themselves be pigeon-holed, because both hemispheres are functioning. In other words, most people are not entirely one or the other; there is usually a mix, with a little more preference toward one side of the brain or the other. That may explain why I am artistic and creative (right-brain functions) but good at languages (a left-brain attribute).

Balanced Life in Reality

13 Thursday Oct 2016


Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Do you know what characteristics are prominently perceived as indicating a left-brain dominant person? If not, this article will be a great fit for you. You will learn the characteristics of left-brain attributes and how you can make
good use of them.
Let’s backtrack a bit:
“Do you usually do things in a planned, orderly way?” Do you find yourself planning for events or day- to-day tasks in a fashion that allows you order and structure? If so, you’re most likely a person who could be called left-brain dominant.
In traditional western school systems, left-brained ways of thinking are favored over right-brained, emphasizing more logical and analytical skills. From my experience from elementary all the
way through college, those who had left-brain tendencies were the top students of their class. While the categories of left-brained and right-brained don’t actually indicate what part of their brain
someone uses, the characteristics
associated with the label left-brain
dominant can indicate that someone will do well in certain environments.

“Left-Brain” Characteristics:
1. Excellent Goal Setters
People called left-brain dominant tend to be excellent goal setters. They get specific on their goals, meaning they get down to the nitty-gritty of exactly how they plan on attaining their goals. They
define specific behaviors or actions that must be acted upon to reach their goals.
They use standards to measure their success when they reach their goals.
Finally, they set achievable and realistic goals.

2. Good at Reading Directions
Left-brained folks are good at reading directions and implementing the directions they were given. They can effectively take action on the task at hand by closely following along with every step laid out in front of them.
They tend to focus on each step to propel them forward to the next step and the final goal.

3. Sharp Memory Skills
Many people who have dominant left-brain characteristics tend to have sharp memory skills. They could even have early childhood memories or be able to recall minute details regarding a specific
situation that occurred a year ago. I’m sure you have experienced a fellow classmate being able to recall every tidbit of information from a class lecture.

4. Math and Science Subjects Come Very Easily
Left-brain individuals excel in math and science subjects. With their sharp abilities to learn new material and further process it using analytical reasoning, science and math subjects can
be a breeze for them.

5. Excellent Logical Problem Solving Skills
When it comes to addressing a specific problem, a left-brained individual will naturally try to address the problem head on with logic and reasoning. They will get down to the root of the problem
and work themselves out of it.

6. Detail-Oriented
Left-brain individuals tend to think
about things in great detail and may overlook the big picture. This may hinder common sense reasoning and encourage perfectionist tendencies.
However, paying close attention to
details may actually prove beneficial when it comes to detail-oriented subjects such as math and science.

How to Make Good Use of Left Brain Characteristics
If you have left-brain tendencies you know that some of the characteristics listed above can be used to your advantage. You can choose a career that corresponds with these strengths, or you can choose a learning path that will help you expand upon them and further develop mathematical and scientific reasoning. Don’t be afraid to go the opposite direction – having some left-brain traits doesn’t stop you from pursuing right-brain activities and learning other strengths.

Be sure to be mindful that the label of left- or right-brained is not important.
It is just an observation of
characteristics you already have. Don’t let yourself be pigeon-holed into identifying with left- or right-brain tendencies, because in all reality both hemispheres are functioning.
Determining if you fit the left- or right- brained stereotype is merely a tool to identify and use your strengths to the best of your ability.

Ah – the human brain. It’s kind of a mystery. But it’s in charge of everything you say, do, and feel. All your thoughts happen here. All those inner dilemmas occur within the brain. It’s pretty wild when you think about it.

The brain itself weighs an average of 3 pounds – that’s 3 pounds of neurons and over 100 trillion connections.

And here’s a mind twist: the brain also named itself. Strange, huh?

Within the brain exists two hemispheres. Each of these halves is in control of set activities and functions. Despite this, these two halves function together. Without the other or if there was to be some sort of cut down the middle, you’d have obvious impairments. In fact, scientists and researchers have studied some of these conditions at length – which likely gives way to what we do know about the brain.

So, what’s up with the two hemispheres? Can you be right or left brain dominant?

The Two Hemispheres

If we break it down simply, right-brain dominant individuals are creative. They are imaginative. They tend toward holistic thinking, arts, and rhythm. They are good with non-verbal cues. And they use their intuition.

Left-brain dominant individuals tend to lean toward logic. They thrive with rational thought and organization, such as sequencing, linear thinking, mathematics, and facts. These kind of people are more analytical in nature.

But here’s where it gets confusing. The left brain actually controls the right brain. And they are intricately connected to one another. The left side of the brain even controls the right side of the body and vice versa.

And interestingly, you don’t usually use one side of your brain at one time. They work together. For instance, the left brain might handle difficult mathematical equations, but the right brain is able to come up with possible outcomes or estimates, as well as compare the outcome.

So, Does it Matter Whether You’re Left or Right Brain Dominant?

Not really. It’s neat to know how the brain works and functions. But just because you think you’re more right brain dominant, doesn’t mean you aren’t capable of highly logical thought.

In fact, the brain is constantly changing and adapting. It all depends on the thought processes and learning you put yourself and your brain through. And you should constantly be challenging it. It’s how you remain sharp, thwart dementia, and age well.

Keeping Your Brain Sharp: How-To

Exercising your brain is critical to keep your body and mind sharp well into your later years. It’s all part of proper mental health care. Like your body, you need to exercise your mind.

So, how can you do that?

1. Read or write every day.

And saying you “don’t like reading or writing” isn’t a good excuse. There are tons of topics to read or write about. Choose something that interests you. Read up on it! Or write down your thoughts – do a brain dump. It’s mentally cleansing and gets your brain thinking.

2. Keep on learning!

Just because you’ve graduated school doesn’t mean you should stop learning. Learn a new skill. Again, read up on something that interests you. Take a pottery or other class. Challenge yourself to learn a new language. Learning creates new neural connections and solidifies them. It makes your brain work and keeps it in tip-top shape.

3. Try out puzzles.

Go for crosswords or sudoku – something that requires a bit of problem-solving.

4. Participate in memory games.

Testing your memory is one of the best things you can do for your brain. It keeps those neural connections strong and sharp!

5. Use your senses – all of them.

Keep that sensory input coming. Also – the more sense you utilize when learning something, the more likely you’ll be able to remember it. A study proved this via memory and the sense of smell.

6. Repeat things to remember them.

Just met a new person? When you say hi, repeat their name. It’ll stick better.

And on top of all these mind games and tricks, you can do more.

Exercise is critical for overall health. Get those 150 minutes in each week! Being a non-smoker is associated with good health, as well as good mental resilience. Socializing is of the utmost importance when it comes to mental health care. It contributes to self-esteem. It gives us purpose and allows us to make meaningful connections.

Lastly, believe in yourself. This one is interesting! When middle-aged and older individuals were exposed to negative stereotypes, they performed less well on mental tasks. Yet, they were better at mental and memory tasks with positive reinforcement. Don’t let anyone fool you. You’re great – just as you are. And you can do anything you believe you can.

Bottom Line: Keep Exercising Your Brain – It Matters!

Plus, it can absolutely deflect the hum-drum feeling that life can sway toward sometimes. Learning something new can light that fire underneath you again, as well as ensure your brain is keeping up.

So, whether your left or right brain dominant, it might not really matter. What matters more is staying sharp and resilient as you age. Don’t become boxed in because you might think you’re more right brain dominant over the left. The sky is the limit. Go after what you want. And most importantly, enjoy this life. You only get one!

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Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Krista Bugden

“Believing in yourself is really half the battle,” says Krista. Anything is possible and you really can achieve anything you set your mind to, is her motto. Physiotherapist, Piano player, skydiver, yogi, adventure traveler and energetic force of positivity, Krista is herself a (delightful) force to be reckoned with! As. Read More

People are often categorized either as left-brained and right-brained, meaning one side of their brain is dominant.

In this article, we will explore specifically the left brain characteristics, what they are, what it means to be a left-brain person, and how you can align your left brain using your knowledge, skills, and talents to reach your brain’s full potential.

What Does It Mean To Be A Left-Brained Person?

It is believed that people are generally inclined towards thinking one way over the other. If you’re analytical and methodical, you’re a left-brained person. If you’re creative and artistic, you’re a right-brained person.

Compared to a right-brained person, a person with left brain characteristics is more verbal, analytical, and orderly.

In reality, both sides of the brain work in unison and are in constant communication. This means that most people not entirely left-brain or right-brain oriented. Still, in some people, one of the sides can be more dominant than the other.

What Are The Common Characteristics?

The most common left brain characteristics include language, analytics, and logic, making them better at things, like reading, writing, and computations. It’s known as the digital brain.

The left brain dominates the following abilities and aspects of our conscious mind:

  • Thinking in words
  • Linear thinking
  • Facts
  • Logic
  • Sequencing
  • Mathematics

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

What Is The Personality Of A Left-Brained?

Left-brained people prefer cold-hard facts and real-life data rather than emotions and imagination. Their systematic and stable personalities make them good candidates as reliable team leaders. They often pace themselves and do not overreact quickly.

When it comes to daily life, left-brain personalities approach it the same way they approach their professional or academic obligations. They strive to be as clear and direct as possible. Left-brain people like order and organize their daily plans as neatly and systematically as possible.

They remember events chronologically, usually in great detail, and approach every potential risk with necessary caution. When facing problems, they immediately try to find the most efficient solutions, and they are not easily distracted by their emotions.

An example of a left-brained is when they watch a movie, they analyze it from a technical point of view. They evaluate the quality of a script as well as how good or bad the directing is.

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

How To Develop This Side Of The Brain

Left-brained people often exhibit logical-mathematical intelligence, which is one of the nine intelligences defined by Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences. This enables them to be excellent mathematicians, scientists, and technicians.

Everyone possesses this type of intelligence to a certain extent. But people with left brain characteristics can especially benefit from improving it. They can gain a better understanding of logic by solving mathematical problems and immersing themselves in novel situations.

They can also benefit from spending time with friends who are interested in math and science. Their logical thinking will naturally improve.

“We need to know how our minds work so we can work our minds better.”

Exercises To Improve Your Left Brain

  • Mental exercises: Since the left side of the brain is better with words and numbers, simple brain games and exercises such as Sudoku and crossword puzzles can help improve these skills.
  • Physical exercises: Exercising the right side of your body will stimulate the left side of your brain (and vice versa), so simple exercises like breathing through one nostril can awaken your brain.
  • Listening to music: A 2008 study on music and brain activity has shown that listening to music can improve verbal and memory skills.

So, no matter how good we are in specific parts of our talents granted by either side of the brain, finding a balance between the two can help unleash the full potential of our minds.

Uplevel Your Left Brain In 60 Minutes

Now you know all about the left brain…how about giving it a boost?

In order to keep your left brain sharp, open, and expansive, it’s important to tend to your overall brain health and your learning practice.

That’s why we hooked up with globally celebrated brain expert Jim Kwik to bring you his FREE Superbrain Masterclass to totally boost your brainpower, learn any skill faster, retain more, forget less, and tend to your overall brain health.

Everyone has a Superbrain’, Jim says, – it’s just a matter of tapping into its power.

Join over 2.5 MILLION students who have successfully completed this Masterclass and discovered Jim’s 10 Brain Hacks by clicking below. It’s completely free of charge for everyone, and we hope to see you there.

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

by Mindvalley
Mindvalley is creating a global school that delivers transformational education for all ages. Powered by community. Fueled by fun. We are dedicated to ensuring that humans live happier, healthier, and more fulfilled lives by plugging in the gaps that conventional education failed to teach us. We do this by organising real-world events around the world and producing world-class quality programmes in several areas of transformation, including mind, body, and performance.

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Though one side of your brain is dominant, a few tricks can activate both hemispheres so you can be both creative and logical

Aman paints with his brains, not with his hands. When painter Michelangelo said this 500 years ago, he did not know how far science would take this idea. The theory of lateralisation says that the human brain is separated into two cerebral hemispheres, the left and the right brain, both of which execute different functions. And painting is to do not just with the brain, but in fact, with the right side of it.

Striking the right (and left) balance
1 Juggling demands great handeye co-ordination and gets them in action together. But to offset your habits and left or right brain dominance, try doing daily activities with your non-dominant hand. If you are right-handed, use your left hand to write, and vice versa.

2 Around 80 years ago, psychologist John Stroop came up with an interesting test to gauge the ability of brain’s two sides to work together. Use alternate-colored pens to write a series of colour names but try to read only the color. So you may write ‘Yellow’ using a blue pen, but the challenge is to read it as Yellow and so on. This conflict-inducing test combines colour and language awareness and activates the anterior cingulate, a section of the brain that lies between the left and right hemispheres and helps resolve conflicts between them.

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Understanding your brain type will give you clues to how your mind solves problems. Maybe you, or your students or children have a difficult time with crossword puzzles. Maybe your biggest difficulty has always been math. You might be surprised to know that your dominant brain type has an effect on your learning.

“Your dominant brain type has a very significant affect on your study skills, homework habits, and grades. For instance, some students may struggle with specific assignment types or test questions, based on their specific brain types,” according to HomeworkTips.

But not to worry, once you know your brain type, you can get on the right track to be able to understand difficult concepts or assignments.

“By understanding your dominant brain type, you may be able to adjust your study methods, and perhaps shape your schedule and coursework, to suit your own personality type,” Homework Tips assures.

Finding out which side your brain is more dominant is the first step to adjusting your study routine and making arrangements for your children to tackle their learning in new, innovative ways.

“In general the left and right hemispheres of your brain process information in different ways. We tend to process information using our dominant side. However, the learning and thinking process is enhanced when both side of the brain participate in a balanced manner. This means strengthening your less dominate hemisphere of the brain,” Web–us said.

Finding Your Brain Type

There are two tests you can use:

Right Brain Dominant

Do you like extensive conversation and lengthy debates about philosophy and politics? You might be a “right brain dreamer.”

About the right brain oriented, Homework Tips said, “They can be very intelligent and very deep thinkers—so much so that they can get lost in their own little worlds. They make great students of the social sciences and the arts. They are more spontaneous than the cautious left-brainers, and they are likely to follow their own gut feelings.”

Left Brain Dominant

If waiting on the clock gets you stressed and you think of projects in terms of analytics, you might be left brain dominant.

“Typically, dominant left brain students will be more organized, they’ll watch the clock, and they’ll analyze information and process it sequentially. They are often cautious, and they follow rules and schedules. Left brain students are strong in math and science, and can answer questions quickly. Left brain students would make great Jeopardy contestants,” Homework Tips said.

Not Right or Left Brain Dominant

But some people don’t fall into the left dominant, or right dominant categories. Some fall in the middle.

“Some people are very equal when it comes to characteristics. Those students are middle brain oriented, and they might do well on The Apprentice. Why? Students who are middle brain oriented can have strong qualities from either hemisphere. Those students can benefit from logic from the left and intuition from the right. That sounds like a great recipe for success in business, doesn’t it?” Homework Tips said.

More Ways to Analyze Your Brain Type

For more information on the differences between right brain dreamers and the left brain dominant, visit Funderstanding‘s RightBrainvs. LeftBrain.

About the author – Kelly McLendon

Kelly McLendon is studying Environmental Policy and Journalism. She can be reached via email

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4 Responses to Good at Math? Good at Science? What’s Your Brain Type?

please, i find it very to read and understand but i am very good in calculation. how can i improve upon my reading.

I have always been a right minded person but my inconsiderate parents have always forced me to think and behave like that of a left minded…. Is it possible to reform someone with a preference to one side to another? What are the repercussions of this? Yours truly, a very confused teenager

Julia,Normally, creating an acucont is all you need to do. Perhaps refreshing the browser or closing out and reopening your internet will help now that you have an acucont to sign on with. If you can’t get one to work, see me outside of class so I can help you with it on a computer (before school or a free period).

I learned a cool trick to see what hemisphere of my brain I think with .. clasp your hands together and whatever thumb is on top points to the side of brain you think with example if you right hand thumb is on top its pointing to your left arm witch makes you a left hemisphere lead .. if you left hand thumb is on top your a right hemisphere lead .. most people i tell that are right hemisphere leads always gets upset or excited or offended .. I noticed that left hemisphere don’t responded the same way .. hope thats helpful .. GOD BLESS

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Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of itWhile you’re finishing family dinner, your child has quickly organized and described how his food is positioned on his plate according to color. When at school, he’s ready to answer every question with the right answer and can’t get enough of working through interesting and challenging problems. Sounds like you have a left-brain dominant child in your home.Just like the majority of the population, your child favors his logical and objective left-brain over his creative and freethinking right brain. Although our bodies use both sides of our brains to make decisions and perform daily functions, we all seem to lean to one side or the other. And, there is not one that is better or worse, just different. Every parent wants their child to succeed and excel in school and his future ventures, so finding more information on how to tap into his best way of learning, and helping him remember the importance of his creative right brain is key.

Left Brain Characteristics

The brain is cut in half creating the right and left-brain. The sides work together to create a complete human being, but certain individuals do find one side more dominant than the other. Left brain children may desire to spend time learning on their own, creating charts or detailed notes instead of making interesting projects, and totally don’t feel they are the next great artist. The creative right brain is more than happy taking a step back and letting the logical left take over, but tapping into all the wonderful right-brain qualities is essential for developing young children.

Along with being considered left-brain dominant, your child may be thought of as an auditory learner, or someone who prefers learning through listening. There are three types of learning, visual, auditory, and kinetic. Right brain dominant children may lean toward being visual and kinetic learners, where left-brain leaning children truly gain more knowledge through listening to lectures and hearing detailed instructions. Kinetic learners gain knowledge through doing and visual through looking and visualizing. Often left brain dominant children feel comfortable talking things out, talking about the things they like, and talking in general, which sometimes makes it challenging to encourage them to listen to others for a change.

Learning with a Left Brained Child

Now that you have determined that your child is leaning more toward his left-brain than his right, there are ways to encourage his learning, and also train his brain to let loose that creative right brain at helpful times.

  • Even though your child may seem comfortable talking all about what he knows, help him use that creative right brain and really enhance his learning by encouraging him to turn those important facts he needs to remember into a song. Writing and singing a song taps into your child’s brain in a different way, causing that left-brain to give the right brain a chance at showing its abilities.
  • Left-brain learners often find working alone and in silence to be the most comfortable, so why not try something different? The next time your child has important facts or vocabulary words he needs to remember, have him create a colorful collage. He can look through magazines until he finds images that connect with what he is learning and use markers to incorporate the important facts into his artwork. While he’s working, play classical music, helping connect his left and right brain while creating.
  • According to Dr. Dianne Connell, left-brain dominant children may become frustrated when given open-ended assignments and find ways to avoid doing them altogether. The next time your child is feeling overwhelmed with a visual-spatial activity, such as creating a model of the solar system, help ease the confusion by talking through the project and creating a detailed chart with the steps for the assignment clearly stated. This will encourage your child to stay on task without fear of failure.
  • Offer your left-brain learner a small recorder he can use to gather snippets of information he hears around him, or to interview friends and family about a topic he is researching. Before recording, encourage your child to ask permission, especially at school. Taping the lectures, important information, and conversations he hears around him allows him to listen to all the beneficial facts later, tapping into his auditory learning style. He can create lists or charts with the information he gathered to assist him with completing his assignment.
  • In the classroom, offer left-brain learners the opportunity to work individually on assignments so each child has the option to complete tasks in silence and at their own pace. Including charts, visuals, and detailed notes on the front board benefits all children, and also offers the left-brain dominant child helpful information to aid in their learning.

Offer your left-brain learner lots of praise and find insightful ways to encourage his creativity. The more comfortable he feels expressing himself artistically through the use of his right brain, the more often he will do so!

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

The viral Shoe from 2017 is back to haunt everyone this spooky season, with some new pop science behind it. The internet, including Lizzo, is very shaken over this Vans Old Skool sneaker photo because some people see grey and teal, and other people see pink and white. Lizzo shared the image on her Instagram, writing, “I SEE GREY & TEAL BUT MY WHOLE TEAM SEES PINK & WHITE HELP 😩😩😩😩🤯🤯🤯”

Now the shoe photo comes with a caption attributing people seeing different colors to brain dominance: Left-brained people (those who are more logical, since the regions of the brain that handle language, analytical thinking, and number are on the left side) see grey and teal, while right-brained people (those who are more creative, since the regions of the brain that handle expression, emotional intelligence, and imagination are on the right side) see white and pink.

Signs you're "left-brain dominant" and how to make good use of it

It’s a fun theory to think about—that you may use one side more than another, and it influences your personality—but brain dominance is ultimately a pop psychology myth. And the colors you saw in the shoe weren’t because of brain dominance in 2017 and likely aren’t now: it’s just a new twist that helped the image go viral again.

VeryWell Mind has a great breakdown of why the idea of left-brain vs. right-brain dominant people took off and what the science actually is behind it. The reality is both sides of the brain collaborate to do tasks, although sometimes activity can be higher in certain regions of the brain than others.

Science writer Carl Zimmer, who VeryWell featured in its piece, summed up succinctly why the left vs right brain is off for a 2009 Discover magazine article he wrote.

“No matter how lateralized the brain can get, though, the two sides still work together,” he wrote. “The pop psychology notion of a left brain and a right brain doesn’t capture their intimate working relationship. The left hemisphere specializes in picking out the sounds that form words and working out the syntax of the words, for example, but it does not have a monopoly on language processing. The right hemisphere is actually more sensitive to the emotional features of language, tuning in to the slow rhythms of speech that carry intonation and stress.”