Left Brain versus Right Brain

For years scientists have said there is a difference between the functions of our right and left hemisphere’s in our brains. As the text in the image below says…

I am the left brain. I am a scientist. A mathematician. I love the familiar. I categorise. I am accurate. Linear. Analytical. Strategic. I am practical. Always in control. A master of words and language. Realistic. I calculate equations and play with numbers. I am order. I am logic. I know exactly who I am.

I am the right brain. I am creativity. A free spirit. I am passion. Yearning. Sensuality. I am the sound of roaring laughter. I am taste. The feeling of sand beneath bare feet. I am movement. Vivid colours. I am the urge to paint on an empty canvas. I am boundless imagination. Art. Poetry. I sense. I feel. I am everything I wanted to be.

I am a scientist but I am also a writer. Because of this I’ve always found it hard to switch between the analytical and creative when writing for work versus writing fiction. So the explanation that the two hemispheres of our brain are wired differently has always made perfect sense to me.

However, a new study suggests this thinking is actually wrong. That the two hemisphere’s are cross-wired and it is activity dependent and not holistic as first thought.

If that’s the case, I wonder why I struggle so much with the switch from the science to the creative? Does anyone else have this problem?

12 comments on “Left Brain versus Right Brain

  1. Giggling Fattie

    August 10, 2018 at 8:22 pm

    I am definitely sooo much more of the right side. I think it’s so sad when people don’t get to learn based on this. As a former teacher, I see the struggle all the time. I hate when people will allow you to be bad at creative things because “your brain doesn’t work that way” or “you’re just not gifted in that area” but if you struggle with science or math then you’re slow or there’s something wrong.

    I personally struggle a lot when trying to switch from one to the next. If they are connected, I’d like to know how to strengthen those connections haha

    • I agree, GF. There are so many kids who learn in different ways yet at school they are taught one way only (like the kids who are visual and have to listen to a teacher talk for an hour).

  2. I have always been intrigued that music and math are connected–they seem left and right brain. I don’t struggle so much as think I’m better at one than the other. But with the fullness of time, I come to realize both are better with input from the other.

    • It’s interesting how many studies have shown that kids who play a musical instrument do so much better at math. I think it must be something to do with having to read and interpret the written music while keeping the beat?

  3. What’s that called? Neuroplasticity? Where the brain will adapt so the person can function. Did you read about that guy who had half his brain missing but functioned just fine? They only found the missing brain when they did a scan about something completely unrelated.

    We know nothing about the brain, really. As for creativity and analytic, it probably depends on the person. If you feel they aren’t related, they aren’t. Your brain is going to believe what you tell it.

    • No! I haven’t heard about the guy who had half a brain (although I do know about the chicken who lived without a head). Tha’s a really good point about your brain believing what you tell it. I’ll have to speak nicely to mine!

  4. I’m a scientist and a writer too, AJ. But I don’t write fiction. I do paint and draw as well, and I do find that a bit of a struggle – Need to get past my inner editor/perfectionist. I think this is something we can get better at with practice and don’t think that is particularly right- or left- brain-related, though.
    I remember taking a brain test many years ago, to apparently decide which side is dominant. My results put me squarely in the middle. Don’t know how accurate it was, but I took comfort in being so “balanced”. LOL!


    • Isn’t it good to know you are a balanced person, Deb =) I have a rather strong inner editor/perfectionist too. Maybe that has as much to do with it than right/left brain?

  5. Many of the most famous science fiction writers have been scientists, eg Isaac Asimov. That’s why they could take existing scientific knowledge and say,”What if…?” Albert Einstein played the violin. What about Leonardo, genius artist who invented things, even if they weren’t built? Plenty more examples.

    Myself, I’m very much a right brainer.

  6. I’m fairly balanced, though I lean toward the creative side as a musician and writer. I think a lot of the left-side/right-side comes from people simply not being exposed to the “other” side early or often enough. I don’t necessarily believe that anyone can learn anything, because certain things are genuinely more difficult for some people to comprehend and retain, but the connections are constantly being made and adapting as we learn, so it’s no different than when we were toddlers and having all that input forming our processes.

    • That’s an interesting idea, Lynda. I wonder if exposure is needed for a developing brain to be able to effectively use the left and/or right side of their brain?

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