The Koa Club Newsletter (May 2023) – Let Your Creative Juices Flow (Even If You Swear You Are Left-Brained)

Life Musings

Written by Lisa Schmidt, Special Projects @The Koa Club

The brain is wider than the sky.” – Emily Dickinson

Have you ever thought of yourself as a left-brained or right-brained person? You may have heard that the left side of your brain is responsible for analytical thinking, while the right side is responsible for creativity. However, recent research suggests that this is not necessarily true. While different parts of the brain do play a role in processing different mental tasks, there is typically no overall dominant side.

Balancing both sides of the brain is an important aspect of nurturing creativity and can be beneficial for overall mental health. In fact, many therapies and exercises are designed to help individuals switch between the two sides of their brain, rather than relying solely on one dominant side. By engaging both sides of the brain, we can stimulate more creative thinking, problem-solving, and increase our overall sense of well-being. Reading fiction can stimulate the right side of the brain, while reading the news or doing a crossword puzzle can work the left side of the brain.

Another popular exercise is known as “brain balancing”. This involves engaging in a series of exercises that work to activate both sides of the brain simultaneously. These exercises can include breathing techniques, movement, and sensory stimulation. Here’s a quick video example of 5 Brain Exercises to Improve Memory and Concentration (and bonus, you might learn to actually juggle instead of just metaphorically!)

If you have always thought of yourself as an analytical person OR a creative type, it may be time to reconsider those labels. Don’t let these left-brain and right-brain myths limit your potential. It’s possible to be both analytical AND creative, and many people are!

In addition, activities that require both analytical and creative thinking can also help balance both sides of the brain. For example, playing a musical instrument involves both analytical skills (reading sheet music) and creative skills (improvisation). Engaging in activities that require both types of thinking can help to keep the brain balanced and reduce the risk of cognitive decline later in life.

So, how else can we get our creativity flowing, regardless of which side of the brain we think dominates our thinking? Here are a few tips:

1.       Take a break from screens: Spending all day in front of a computer or phone can be draining and limit our creativity. Take breaks throughout the day to step away from screens, go outside, go for a walk, or just get some fresh air.

2.       Try something new: Break out of your routine and try something new. Work a crossword or try a puzzle. Whether it’s taking a different route to work or trying a new hobby, doing something different can stimulate your brain and help you think outside the box.

3.       Practice mindfulness: Take a few minutes each day to practice mindfulness. This could be through meditation, deep breathing, journaling or simply taking a few moments to be present and focus on your surroundings. Let your mood dictate your routine – Go with the vibes!

4.       Collaborate with others: Brainstorming and collaborating with others can help you generate new ideas and perspectives. Working with others who have different strengths and perspectives can help you approach problems in a new way.

Remember, creativity is not limited to those who consider themselves “right-brained.” Anyone can tap into their creativity and find new ways to approach problems and generate ideas. So don’t be afraid to try something new and step outside of your comfort zone! We welcome you to join us in the Koa Network under the Collaborate for Success Huddle group to continue this discussion.

Learn. Connect. Lead.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *