Wednesday, August 3, 2011

3# Lies | Your Personality Is Determined by Your Left or Right Brained-ness

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If you have functioning ears, you've definitely been told at some point in your life that lefties can access some cerebral cheat code that makes them artistically talented or emotional, and that righties are better at logical or intellectual thought. And it's all because the right side of your brain (which controls the left side of your body) is totally in charge of your creativity, while the left side controls your logic.

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Leading to the immortal question: "If I switch hands, will I do better on the math test?"
The Truth:
It turns out that the whole thing about creative genius stemming from the right side of your brain is a big fat myth. Yet this myth is so pervasive that teachers are often told to balance the amount of right-brain and left-brain activities, lest their fragile little brains develop into the cognitive equivalent of those arm wrestlers with one giant arm.
Wikipedia Commons
This is your brain on an unbalanced education, according to 18th-century educators who are still somehow teaching.
The brain does indeed have some specialized structures that handle certain functions, but the idea that they cluster to opposite sides of the brain, like neurolinguistic cliques of nerds and jocks in a high school lunchroom is ridiculous. For example, while things like grammar and word production are both located on the left side of the brain, intonation and emphasis happen on the right. So you're not going to be much good with language if you're not pretty handy with both hemispheres.
Most brain functions work this way. Along with language, emotions (supposedly controlled by the right brain), and arithmetic (supposedly dominated by the cold, calculating left hemisphere) both get the bi-lateral treatment. Scientists will tell you that in order to be truly creative or logical, you need resources from both sides of your brain.
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"Sir, since you aren't using the left side, I don't see your objection to having it cut out."
Complicating our vision of the brain as an East Coast/West Coast battle is the fact that sometimes one part of your brain will take over the functions of areas that have been damaged. Which is why people who have had to remove an entire brain hemisphere don't suddenly lose all their "creativity" or "logic" functions. They go on to do things like graduate college, and they usually regain a good chunk of the supposedly lost localized functions.
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You can even drink with half a brain. But all the lamest doctors say you shouldn't.
Sorry to shatter your hopes of becoming misunderstood abstract painters, lefties. Hey, at least you still have an advantage in sports! And apparently, murder.

By: SpectaNews

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