What is keeping you awake at night, or is waking you up in the wee hours of the morning? Do you toss and turn as you try to think your way through the questions, problems, or decisions that are weighing on your mind? Day after day, or should I say - night after night – you are getting increasingly exhausted; but you are no closer to a solution. Do you feel like you are losing your mind!? You’re not. You’re just using the wrong part of your brain.
Now, if you’re a scientist or other left-brain dominant individual, what I’m about to suggest may not make a lot of sense to you. It may not fit well with the way you see the world, or the way you operate in the world. Nevertheless, we know that you’re clever enough to understand that not everyone processes information or makes decisions in the same way. Oops! Did that sound condescending? Apologies! Because, of course, we right-brained folk know what that feels like; and it was not our intention.
“Left-brain? Right-brain?” If you’re a “leftie”, you are already saying, “Hogwash!” Because, of course, neuroscientists consider the “Left/Right Brain” dominance theory to be simplistic, at best, an exaggeration and a distortion of scientific fact. Nevertheless, these terms do provide a common - if metaphorical – short-hand understanding of mental processing styles and preferences. Naturally, every healthy individual uses both “hemispheres” of their brain but, according to the theory, each of us has a natural preference for one “side” or the other.
The left-side (L) of the brain is considered to be most adept at tasks that involve language, logic, numbers, reasoning, and analytical or critical thinking. The right side (R) of the brain is considered to be best at expressive and creative tasks including: recognizing faces, reading and expressing emotions, music, color, images, intuition, and creativity. These so-called “right brain” or “intuitive” methods may not work for you L-types. We get that! But that doesn’t mean they don’t work! Moreover, when we’re “stuck”, it’s often advisable – even for you - to get out of our preferred way of processing, and try something different. Indeed, that is how some of the most creative ideas are born!
So, whatever issue you’re wrestling with, if you’re lying awake at night, trying to “think” your way to a solution, stop! Try something different! Try writing, drawing, painting, storytelling, myth, metaphor, or collage. For more information, read our blog at http://www.c-change.info/index.php/blog/entry/a-whole-new-mind-a-book-review ; and for help getting into your “Right Mind”, contact C-Change. Let us take you on a voyage of self-discovery.
Joanne Martin is the Creator of the Therapeutic Writing Network, and Director of C-Change Counselling. She has over 30 years’ experience in human resources and professional and career development in industry and higher education, and in personal growth and development as a counsellor, educator, trainer and facilitator. Joanne now specializes in therapeutic and/or expressive writing and story-telling, offering a variety of fun, imaginative, and developmental writing workshops – both in person and online.