I first met Vicky years ago when she was looking for a new job that would give her the opportunity to exercise the “right-side” of her brain and explore her creative spirit.
Prior to our encounter, Vicky held a consulting position with Accenture, had multiple degrees in engineering and was self-taught on the latest design software. Fortunately for her, the consumer products company I was leading needed another design package specialist. She was hired on a trial period. After 90 days, we sat down to discuss her performance. Through the organization’s eyes she had done extremely well. However, she said she missed applying the analytical side of her personality. It just happened that at this time that our company was in need of a website upgrade. Vicky took on this task with passion. She continued to leverage her intuitive "right-side" through the frontend web design. In addition, she was able to re-engage the "left-side" with the backend web development. Yet again, she crushed it! One of the most impressive qualities of Vicky was her ability to find a balance between her need to exercise her logical side and creative side. Indeed, Vicky did so well with harmonizing what society typical brands as opposing passions that she went on to start her own consulting firm called, “A little Moxie.”
I tell you the story about Vicky because she is a true example of what I just finished reading about in Daniel Pink’s book titled, “A Whole New Mind.” In it he embraces the concept that it is important to leverage both sides of your brain (left and right) to truly tap into your professional and personal development. As you can read in Vicky’s bio (click here), she is more than happy when she is pursuing both.
Many of us believe we are wired either one way or another. However, the left and right brain functions are not mutually exclusive; we require BOTH brain functions to optimally succeed. It’s not an either/or thing. The right brain gives us the “why” and the left brain gives us the “how.” It’s up to us to take full advantage of the right-side to continue to push the left-side. Today, I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and flex the brain muscle you feel you discount the most. If you are the creative type – try a crossword puzzle or Sudoku problem. If you are the more logical type – try some creative writing or drawing. Experts say simple exercises such as these will revitalize and expand your thinking...and what leader wouldn’t want that?
I would love to hear what you do to exercise your mind. Workout your right-brain and share your thoughts below in the comment section.