January 2010 - Are You a Right or Left Brain Thinker?
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Are you a genius at certain jobs but feel like a half-wit when trying to complete other types of work? The two sides of your brain each have distinct preferences and capabilities, and your strong suits and weaknesses are frequently based upon the side of your brain that is dominant.
Job dissatisfaction is one of the common reasons clients come in to see me, especially around the New Year when many are rethinking the year ahead and their life goals. Many times job dissatisfaction can simply be compatibility issues with fellow employees, or a boss, but sometimes it’s a mismatch with which side of your brain you naturally use.
Take this quiz by N. Bhatta to find out whether or not you are a right or left brain thinker and check out the career choices that correlate.
1. Are you better at math and science than art and literature?
YES – People who are left-brain thinkers are often better at and enjoy math and science over art and literature, making them perfect candidates for a career in engineering.
NO - People who are right-brain thinkers are often better at and enjoy art and literature over math and science, making them perfect candidates for a career in grant writing.
2. Do you love playing sports outdoors over reading indoors?
YES – The great outdoors and athletics are favorites of people who are right-brain thinkers, and a career that can combine the two, like one as a recreation director, is perfect.
NO - Staying indoors and reading are favorites of people who are left-brain thinkers, and a career that can combine the two, like one as a librarian, is perfect.
3. Do you prefer verbal communication over physical communication?
YES – Left-brain thinkers love to work things out by talking, enjoying jobs like career counseling, where they are very effective.
NO - Right-brain thinkers think that actions speak louder than words, enjoying being very effective at showing their worth without words, like the career path of being a yoga instructor.
4. Would you rather draw pictures freehand instead of putting together a model airplane?
YES – People who are right-brain thinkers aren't fans of tremendous structure and prefer having some creativity at work, which makes marketing a perfect career for them.
NO - People who are left-brain thinkers are in need of structure and prefer having specific guidelines at work, which makes computer programming a perfect career path for them.
5. Do you like being in groups more than being alone?
YES – Group-oriented people are usually right-brain thinkers, making a job in retail a good fit for their lifestyle preference.
NO - Loners are usually left-brain thinkers, making a job in accounting a good fit for their lifestyle preference.
6. When given instructions, are lots of pictures easier to understand than lots of text?
YES – Right-brain thinkers love picture explanations over textual explanations, and this visual preference usually lends well to a career in interior design.
NO - Left-brain thinkers love textual explanations over pictorial explanations, and this preference usually lends well to a clerical career.
7. Have you noticed that you're better at providing the details and necessary information for a project than coming up with the initial idea?
YES – Those who are left-brain thinkers are more into processing loads of information and hammering out the details than being involved in the creative process, and a career in human resources is perfectly suited for this skill set.
NO - Those who are right-brain thinkers are more interested in the initial creative process than the information gathering that follows, and a career in consulting is perfectly suited for this skill set.
8. Do you need a completely quiet environment when you are working?
YES – Quiet environments are usually needed by left-brain thinkers, who would prefer a career where they could work from home in silence over something that required a noisy environment.
NO - Right-brain thinkers don't mind a bustling background as they work, making them more suitable for jobs that require noisy environments like those in the hospitality and hotel fields.
9. Would you enjoy helping someone solve a relationship problem more than a math problem?
YES – Solving relationship problems is right up the alley of the right-brain thinker, and a career as a psychologist would be both enjoyable and rewarding for this type of person.
NO - Solving math and technical problems is right up the alley of the left-brain thinker, and a career as a computer technician would be both enjoyable and rewarding for this type of person.
10. If you were a writer, would you prefer to write nonfiction books instead of fiction?
YES – Left-brain thinkers are obsessed with details and truth, making a career in banking or finance worth considering.
NO - Right-brain thinkers are more imaginative and don't mind making a career up as they go, making a job in sales worth considering.
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