Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Which hand do you do it with?

I'm right handed, but consider myself creative but am also quite a logical and analytical person.  I know a fair few creative people who are left handed though, which I find very interesting. One's preferred hand is typically controlled by the opposite side of the brain, for example if one is right handed it is controlled by the left side of the brain, left handed by the right. The left brain controls muscle function on the right side of the body, and would be linked to a preferred hand.  So it is concluded by some that that side of the brain is 'stronger' or favoured in some way.

Typically it is thought that the left brain controls functions such as language, maths and logic. The right controls spatial abilities, face recognition, visual imagery and music. My grandpa was ambidextrous and was an electrician, could build things, fix cars and make anything he turned his hand to. He was also very musical, and taught himself to play the accordion, the keyboard and guitar. This would fit the theory that since both sides of his brain were equally dominant, he could easily do things which were traditionally favoured by either side of his brain. But I'm right handed. I prefer logic. No airy fairy twaddle for me. I lean on the side of research and science, proven studies and tested theories. No, I won't believe that god exists. And homeopathy, the facts are there people for goodness sake, if you believe that a bit of water which once had a drop of lavender in it remembers that lavender and 'cures' you because of it, what about all the chuffing faeces it's had in it? And rotting stuff, if water has memory it can't just forget the bad bits. Like those who believe pseudoscience tend to. Ahem. 

Language one of my stronger points as a writer. I tend to wrestle with grammar but that's what editing is for.  I have an ear for accents, and code-switch into my natural Scottish dialect when talking with Scottish relatives.  But maths? No chance, the look of pure terror on my face if someone throws a question involving subtraction or multiplication would make you think they'd come to murder me and my children.
But I have a strong sense for music, which isn't on 'my' side. Visually I can draw to a decent standard too and never forget someone's face, even decades later, names on the other hand I struggle with. But spacial ability? I'm as clumsy as a drunk stag do wobbling into a kebab shop. All the online tests tell me I'm right brained. So surely I should be left handed?

But like all things such as these, it's very rarely simple. The human brain is far more complex than science can explain, we do have some theories but that bag of grey wobbly stuff in the noggin still has scientists a bit baffled.  So, after reading a little more into the subject and making both my left and right brain hurt I can only conclude it's not as simple as just splitting left handed and right handedness into neat categories.

 It's interesting  to look at the information, simplify it and try to decide whether someone is creative or logical. But like all such things it's daft to try and simplify it to the extent that internet tests do.  It is rather fun to do them though so give them a whirl, I can't say I give them any credence really. The internet is full of 'quizzes' which like to tell us what we're good at, even if it's not true. It can all hinge on ambiguity in the questions, but that's a rant for another blog. Have a go at these and see if you're left or right brained anyhoos.



Adele said...

Thanks for this Lindsay. The tests are fun and for some reason all say the same about me - that my brain is equally balanced and I make wonderful fudge brownies too. Perfick!!

Adele said...

Oh and by the way - the woman doesn't change direction.

Colin Davies said...

Oh what fun. Turns out I'm righht brained 60% to 40% which is handy.

Cracking post

Ashley R Lister said...

One of these tests told me I use my brain equally. I wanted to write a message and say:

"I do not use my brain equally. The two halves of my brain, according to your calculations, are accorded equal control over my thoughts and actions. But that's not the same as you saying I use my brain equally. You should be saying - I use the two halves of my brain equally."

However, I didn't bother sending the message. They forgot to test the lazy half of my brain.