This post is a summary of a psychology lecture and Chapter 2 in my psychology textbook.
Free Psychology Chapter
If you want to learn more about this topic, you can download a free PDF of my neuroscience and behaviour chapter by clicking on this link.
Have you ever wondered how your best friend lives so freely “moment-to-moment” while your mind is imprisoned by thoughts of past events and/or planning of future events (so neatly) written in your (overly structured) daytimer?
Brain Hemispheric Specialization provides insight into why some of us are more present focused and able to “go with the flow” (Right Brain dominant); while others are busy planning their days with the step-by-step precision of a NASA engineer (Left Brain dominant).
Your Brain and Behaviour
Despite being identical in structure, the two halves of the brain specialize in how they process information (e.g., Past vs. Present), and how they function (e.g., Verbal vs. Nonverbal).
Time Processing: Past vs. Present
- Left hemisphere – processes information sequentially, one bit at a time
- Right hemisphere – processes information globally, considering it as a whole
Brain Functions: Linguistic vs. Spatial
- Left hemisphere – includes verbal tasks, such as speaking, reading, thinking, and reasoning.
- Right hemisphere – includes nonverbal areas such as the understanding of spatial relationships, recognition of patterns and drawings, music, and emotional expression,
Neuroscience in Your Life
- Complete the Left/Right Brain Dominance Test to find out which brain hemisphere currently dominates your life.
- Personally, I obtained a score of 10 on this test – indicating that I am equally Left and Right Brained.
- Which didn’t surprise me as I often “lay the table” with outlines, organizers, etc. (Left Brain) and the moment I feel safe, grounded, and prepared, I sit back and watch the ideas fly! (Right Brain)
- What about you? How did you score on the Left/Right Brain Dominance Test? Was it what you expected? Were the results consistent with how you live your life? Did you learn something new about yourself?
- Personally, I obtained a score of 10 on this test – indicating that I am equally Left and Right Brained.
2. Watch the following 20 minute video to: a) learn firsthand about L-R brain specialization and b) discover how Neuroscientist Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor turned her real-life tragedy into an awe inspiring “Stroke of Insight“. I am still moved to tears by her story! I hope you are too. Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor is resilience personified.
“The more time we spend choosing to run the deep inner peace circuitry of our right hemisphere, the more peaceful our planet will be.” — TEDx Speaker Jill Bolte Taylor
Thriving Under Pressure TEDx Talk
What did you score on the Left/Right Brain Dominance Test ?
I’m equally left and right brained as well. 🙂 She’s amazing. I heard her story a few years ago.
Thanks for sharing your results! It’s always helpful to learn more about ourselves. Just like Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor wrote about in “Stroke of Insight” – one insight changes everything.
Right brain for me – score of 12 ! No surprise.
You are a woman who knows herself well!
One of your many soul gifts. 🎁
Thank you – *curtsey*
13 – although I did equally well in algebra vs geometry so I might be closer to a 12…. Love this!!
Thanks for sharing Bonnie! It’s so important to validate test results with actual real life data. The ultimate “test” of the assessment’s content validity. Something I was required to do as a school psychologist measuring student IQ.
I have always been intrigued by all of this – will take the quiz! I have definitely moved more to right-brain territory as my spiritual journey has progressed! 🙂
My pleasure Sandy! Have fun with it. 😊
I’m glad you mentioned you have tendency for both Left and Right. Even before I took the test I knew I had some of both – I scored a 9 ( Right – 9 and Left – 11 ). I find that very strange because I also identify as an introvert, which does not match up with spontaneity, risk taking, and some other Right brain traits. I wonder if some of those traits can be learned, or are simply dormant at times. Brain is a cool organ.
Excellent reflection on the topic. For the most part, brain dominance tends to be slightly more innate than learned – though the L-R skill set certainly can be taught.
Either way, brain lateralization continues to be a hotly debated topic in the field of neuroscience. Which makes it that much more interesting!
Wow this was a great post, thank you for sharing! Jill’s talk was really fascinating as well and she commanded the stage so brilliantly! I’m surprised to have gotten 11 on the quiz! Then again I know very little about the brain so didn’t really know what to expect!
Thanks Arbie! I appreciate you taking the time to read the post & learn more about your awesome brain. Self knowledge is a lifelong journey. And so worth the ride!
Thanks a lot.. Superb article.
My pleasure Zaira! 😊
Interesting, thanks for sharing! ❤
I’m a balanced (right 11 & left 9), something that doesn’t surprise me – even in school, I went for science subjects instead of arts (even majored in IT), but I have creative hobbies like writing stories, drawing, music, etc (friends often asked why I’m doing science subjects). I’m a right-hander but I’ve always done things with both hands (playing piano, video games with controllers, computer, etc) from young, so I guess that helped both my brains to develop together. 😆
Such great insights Nicolle! And so refreshing to hear how well you “know thyself”. Self knowledge is one of the most empowering ventures I know. And you are well on your way!
Thanks very much for the kind words! ❤
Great subject! I love this. I have read about the brain for years. Back when I was working, professional journalist, I took a similar test and ended up right in the middle which I think works best for journalists. Seems like a very useful tool.
How cool Tony! I love hearing about your earlier work as a professional journalist. And how both sides of the brain served you (and your readers) well. So motivating! Thank you!
Thank you! It seems the more info we have the better we do.
Another thought provoking post – thank you! I scored a 14, right brain. Loved the video. I’ve had her book on my shelf for some time – looks like I need to bring it down.
Your writing is so creative & visual in nature VJ. So no wonder you scored a 14 (right brain). Super fun nonetheless. 😊
Enjoy your revisit your “Stroke of Insight” on your bookshelf. Just like in the video, Dr. Taylor’s health trauma is an evocative reminder of how adversity is our ultimate pathway to peace & authenticity.
Something you write about every single day. ✏️💛
Ah, thanks, Andrea! You’re positive words always inspire.
I scored an 8. I’m a lot like you – depends on what’s going on as to whether I’m creative or logical.
Thanks for sharing!
Great post Andrea. The info graphics describe so much and the video so informative. We are always so amazed at how wonderfully we are designed. Our potential is incredible and limited only by our own self talk.
Such powerful words Tom & Audrey. And so true! “We are wonderfully designed. Our potential is incredible.” (Right brain) And unfortunately, it’s our internal chatter & negative self-talk (left brain) that blocks our infinite vision.
One more reason why self understanding is the foundation of happiness & emotional intelligence (EQ). It reminds us that we’re so much more. And when in doubt… get out of your head (Left brain) and… look up! dance! laugh! (Right brain) 💫
Love it!!!!! Great prescription to be used PRN.
Interestingly, but not surprisingly, I came out dead center on the test. Which means I either use both hemispheres equally, or (my theory) I’m being controlled by an alien life force. ;>)
Laughing out loud as I read your (alien) analysis. The best!
Very interesting 🙂
So interesting. I’m at work atm but will do this later to see. Thanks for checking out my blog as well! 🙂
My pleasure Alex. I have so much respect for what you’ve been through & what you’re going through. Women like you are the ultimate mental health warriors. And for that, I am forever grateful.
Thank you so much for this lovely comment! It has just made my day. Thanks for reading, and for following 🙂
That was so cool! I score a perfect 10 as well! I use both. That’s nice I think. ~Kim
More than nice… awesome!
And interesting to note that woman, more than men, tend to use both sides of their brains equally.
The key is to remember that you have the power to switch between L-R brain thinking.
Awareness is the first step..
What an absolutely fascinating post. I did the quiz and scored a 9. Seems my left and right sides are quite balanced. Great post.
Thanks for taking the time Miriam. Self understanding is such a powerful tool. Just like you – I have so much left to learn. And the bonus = I get to learn with my nursing students. This week they did the L-R assessment too. Giving them a tool to understand & be more compassionate about themselves & others. Including their own patients. 💉🏥
How wonderful and fortunate they are.
nice post. very informative. thanks
My pleasure! Don’t forget to try the L-R dominance test.
I did take the test. I scored 9. The result says I am somewhere in the middle. It was fun and interesting. Thanks once again.
Awesome! Thanks for sharing your results. It’s always interesting to learn something new about the brain.
Based on my scores, I’m equally left and right brained.
Thanks for sharing this! I was very intrigued by this article as I experienced an epiphany of sorts recently. I had downloaded an audiobook to listen to (Hailstorm by Brett Arquette-Excellent!!!) while I worked.Here’s what I discovered: If I was working on numbers, graphs, etc., I had no trouble following the story. If I was trying to read something, an email, or write something. I had to stop the audio. I realized it was trying to utilize the same side of the brain (which obviously doesn’t multi-task that well! LOL!). Thanks for the test. I got a 12 – definitely right-brained. 🙂
Awesome! Thank you for sharing your personal experience. Nothing is more rewarding than hearing how ine of my posts shed light on someone’s understanding of themselves. Right brain and all! The best. 💫
So interesting! I scored a 13 meaning I’m more right brained, but just barely. Really loved your post! Do you teach psychology classes online?
Right now I only teach psychology on campus. But maybe one day I will venture out into online classes. In the meantime, you might be interested in my psychology videos https://drandreadinardo.com/psychology-videos/ 📚💚
Awesome! Thanks I will definitely check that out. I find psycology so interesting.
Me too! 😊😊
I really enjoyed reading your blog and listening to Dr. Taylor. I loved hearing her journey and it helped me understand some of my own journey better. I am recovering from a brain trauma produced by severe toxic poisoning from well water. I am just about a year into recovery and appreciated hearing the journey of another person. I still don’t understand all the changes in my brain but hearing her story helped me understand things I experienced. It was interesting to score equal right and left on the test. Pre brain crash I was balanced like that but my brain functions differently now so was not expecting that result. Thanks for putting all of this info together on this page. I look forward to checking out your other posts.
Thank you for sharing your feedback & your story Tamara. Your resilience is truly inspiring!
I got a score 11 on the dominance test which seems accurate. Had to fudge one answer though — I can only guess whether it’s geometry or algebra that comes more readily since it’s been ages since I encountered either in a formal way (and who knows how many disguised ways either branch of math comes at us in daily life???!!!) I’m almost innumerate these days.
Being an artist I know that I use my right brain extensively, but I prize logical thinking very much so if a test says I’m balanced — I’ll take that result!
Just finished reading Taylor’s book. Very inspiring. So glad that she shared her experience with the world.
Great insights Aletha! Especially since you read Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor’s book. Very cool. I also love that you took the time to watch the TED Talk and do the L-R brain test. 🧠💗
Took the test – it was fun. I am a 60% ter. balanced left and right Such a good idea Dr. Dinardo, you must have had a good response, well done!
Thank you for sharing your results Peter! You are right about the response to this post (and L-R Brain Test)! My psychology students really enjoy the hands on opportunity to understand brain symmetry. Wishing you a wonderful June! 😀
As always, I delight in my visits to your site, Doctor Dinardo, and this time was no exception. For the record I clocked a 12, and I think that gives me foot in each camp, with a bias to the right.
I sense that my bias to the right is what makes my life a joy – I love every moment of my life. Yet, I am grateful that I do have a look-in to the left; as this maintains an essence of sobriety and organization to my life, outside of which I would not enjoy the peace that I have, in living the way I do. In short, I might be labeled an, ‘organized happy chappie.’
As a pilot, my left side put caution above all else, my right side said, “Put caution to the wind, let’s enjoy the view….” As a result, I always loved the view, but was ever grateful to feel my feet back on Mother earth.
Jill was phenomenal! Her passion and riveting communicative skills belie her profession.
Thank you Doctor Dinardo.
You are so welcome Peter! Your time and reflection on such an important time in both our personal and global lives is everything. Thank you for once again teaching me through your own experiences. Your right left brain insights are incredible. Stay Well My Friend! 🌍💞
I got a score of 12 – right brain dominant! I’m not surprised considering my recent dive into personality assessments. I am an INFP on the MBTI and Type 4 Wing 5 on the Enneagram. With the MBTI, I was borderline INFJ. It doesn’t surprise me at all to find that I am only slightly leaning to the right brain.
Understanding my personality, I’ve found that I am a walking contradiction! I situationally weave between the two styles, and there are different sides of me. One side loves being more creative and having flexibility, though there is another side of me that needs structure and details when it comes to certain things. I tend to get stuck in analysis paralysis with decision-making and like to have everything planned out in advance.
I find psychology so interesting! Always looking for new ways to better understand myself.
How wonderful Jessica! Thank you for taking the time to share your experience and how it relates to both this post and my psychology blog. I also have a TEDx talk called thriving under pressure that you may also find interesting. Given your comment, it’s right up your alley! Dr. Andrea 😀
I’m definitely right-brained, no two ways about it! There’s the mold, fit Christy into it… 😉 Another great post!