Are you left or right-brained?

This week it’s Left Handers’ Day – when the 10–14% of the world population celebrate their uniqueness and we acknowledge their struggle to use scissors, open tin cans and prune trees in our right-biased world…

455601681But did you know our ‘handedness’ might be a clue into our behaviour and the way our bodies work. Our brains are contra lateral, meaning that the left hemisphere controls the movement of the right side of our body and the right hemisphere controls the left side of our body. A left-handed person will therefore be right-brain dominant while a right-handed person will be left-brain dominant.

Left-brain people are thought to be more organised and systematic while right-brain people are more creative and intuitive.

But just because you are right or left-handed doesn’t mean you only use one side of your brain. We all know which hand we hold a pen with, but how far does this bias extend throughout your body? Are you left-eared? Left eyed?

Take these simple tests to decide:

  1. Imagine the centre of your back is itching. Which hand do you scratch it with?
  2. Interlock your fingers. Which thumb is uppermost?
  3. Imagine you are applauding. Start clapping your hands. Which hand is uppermost?
  4. Wink at an imaginary friend straight in front of you. Which eye does the winking?
  5. Put your hands behind your back, one holding the other. Which hand is doing the holding?
  6. Someone in front of you is shouting but you cannot hear the words. Cup your ear to hear better. Which ear do you cup?
  7. Count to three on your fingers, using the forefinger of the other hand. Which forefinger do you use?
  8. Tilt your head over on to one shoulder. Which shoulder does it touch?
  9. Fixate a small distant object with your eyes and point directly at it with your forefinger. Now close one eye. Now change eyes. Which eye was open when the fingertip remained in line with the small object? (When the other eye, the non-dominant one, is open and the dominant eye is closed, the finger will appear to move to one side of the object.)
  10. Fold your arms. Which forearm is uppermost?

If your answers were:

More right than left: You are left brained. The left brain is thought to have the following functions:

* uses logic* is detail oriented* facts rule* good at words and language* is good at maths and science* is good at comprehension* is knowing

* is good at order/pattern perception

* knows object names

* is reality based

* forms strategies

* is practical

 

More left than right: You are right brained. The right brain is thought to have the following functions:

* uses feeling* sees the “bigger picture”* is ruled by their imagination* good at interpreting symbols and images* interested in philosophy and religion* believes* is appreciative

* has good spatial perception

* knows object functions

* is fantasy based

* presents possibilities

* is impetuous

* will take risks

Did you know?

* Hand preference is thought to begin in your mother’s womb and stay with you for life.

* Men are twice as likely to be left-handed as women.

* The British Royal family has a large number of left-handers, including Princes Charles and William.

* Other famous lefties include: Napoleon, Gandhi, Bill Clinton, Picasso, Leonardo Da Vinci, Judy Garland, Paul McCartney, Charlie Chaplin, Robert DeNiro, Maradona and John McEnroe.

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