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Signs You’re “Left-brain Dominant” and How to Make Good Use of It

Signs You’re “Left-brain Dominant” and How to Make Good Use of It

Do you know what characteristics are prominently perceived as indicating a left-brain dominant person? If not, this article will be a great fit for you. You will learn the characteristics of left-brain attributes and how you can make good use of them.

Let’s backtrack a bit: How did you answer the question in the picture above: “Do you usually do things in a planned, orderly way?”

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Do you agree with the question? Do you find yourself planning for events or day-to-day tasks in a fashion that allows you order and structure? If so, you’re most likely a person who could be called left-brain dominant.

In traditional western school systems, left-brained ways of thinking are favored over right-brained, emphasizing more logical and analytical skills. From my experience from elementary all the way through college, those who had left-brain tendencies were the top students of their class. While the categories of left-brained and right-brained don’t actually indicate what part of their brain someone uses, the characteristics associated with the label left-brain dominant can indicate that someone will do well in certain environments.

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“Left-Brain” Characteristics:

1. Excellent Goal Setters
People called left-brain dominant tend to be excellent goal setters. They get specific on their goals, meaning they get down to the nitty-gritty of exactly how they plan on attaining their goals. They define specific behaviors or actions that must be acted upon to reach their goals. They use standards to measure their success when they reach their goals. Finally, they set achievable and realistic goals.

2. Good at Reading Directions
Left-brained folks are good at reading directions and implementing the directions they were given. They can effectively take action on the task at hand by closely following along with every step laid out in front of them. They tend to focus on each step to propel them forward to the next step and the final goal.

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3. Sharp Memory Skills
Many people who have dominant left-brain characteristics tend to have sharp memory skills. They could even have early childhood memories or be able to recall minute details regarding a specific situation that occurred a year ago. I’m sure you have experienced a fellow classmate being able to recall every tidbit of information from a class lecture.

4. Math and Science Subjects Come Very Easily
Left-brain individuals excel in math and science subjects. With their sharp abilities to learn new material and further process it using analytical reasoning, science and math subjects can be a breeze for them.

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5. Excellent Logical Problem Solving Skills
When it comes to addressing a specific problem, a left-brained individual will naturally try to address the problem head on with logic and reasoning. They will get down to the root of the problem and work themselves out of it.

6. Detail-Oriented
Left-brain individuals tend to think about things in great detail and may overlook the big picture. This may hinder common sense reasoning and encourage perfectionist tendencies. However, paying close attention to details may actually prove beneficial when it comes to detail-oriented subjects such as math and science.

How to Make Good Use of Left Brain Characteristics

If you have left-brain tendencies you know that some of the characteristics listed above can be used to your advantage. You can choose a career that corresponds with these strengths, or you can choose a learning path that will help you expand upon them and further develop mathematical and scientific reasoning. Don’t be afraid to go the opposite direction – having some left-brain traits doesn’t stop you from pursuing right-brain activities and learning other strengths.

Conclusion:

Be sure to be mindful that the label of left- or right-brained is not important.  It is just an observation of characteristics you already have. Don’t let yourself be pigeon-holed into identifying with left- or right-brain tendencies, because in all reality both hemispheres are functioning. Determining if you fit the left- or right-brained stereotype is merely a tool to identify and use your strengths to the best of your ability.

More by this author

Tara Massan

Founder of Be Moved, Life Coach and Writer.

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Last Updated on June 2, 2020

Easy Tasks or Difficult Tasks First? Which One is More Productive?

Easy Tasks or Difficult Tasks First? Which One is More Productive?

Procrastination is probably the biggest detriment to our productivity. Conventional wisdom dictates that the best thing you can do is make that procrastination constructive. When you don’t feel like doing one task, usually one that requires a lot of will- or brainpower, you do another, usually less labor-intensive task.

Recently, though, conventional wisdom has been challenged with something Penn State refers to as “pre-crastination.”[1] After doing a series of studies in which students pick up and carry one of two buckets, researchers theorized that many people prefer to take care of difficult tasks sooner rather than later. That theory poses the question of whether this pre-crastination or the more widely acknowledged constructive procrastination is more effective.

Here is a look at whether people should do difficult tasks early or later on to achieve maximum productivity.

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Doing Easy Tasks First

The Pros

One of the hardest parts of working is just getting started. Constructive procrastination eases this hardship, because working on easy tasks requires a smaller mental or physical commitment than if you tackled difficult tasks firsts.

If one of the foremost deterrents to your productivity is simply getting going, it makes a lot of sense to save the difficult tasks for when you’re in more of a groove.

The Cons

If you eat a frog first thing in the morning, that will probably be the worst thing you do all day. — Mark Twain

On the surface, there don’t seem to necessarily be any disadvantages to doing easy tasks first. However, in Eat That Frog, the book writeen by Brian Tracy challenges that.

Based on the above quote from Mark Twain, Eat That Frog encourages avoiding procrastination, even if that procrastination is constructive. Tracy wants you to “eat that frog,” i.e. do your difficult tasks quickly because the longer it’s on your plate, the harder it will become to do the thing you’re dreading. If you have a habit of dreading things, Eat That Frog makes a solid argument to hold off on your easy tasks until later in the day.

Doing Difficult Tasks First

The Pros

Brian Tracy postulates in Eat That Frog that if you do your difficult tasks first, your other tasks won’t seem so bad. After all, after you eat a frog, even something unappetizing will seem downright delectable.

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Tracy also recommends that, if you have to eat two frogs, you should eat the uglier one first. The metaphor is a very easy way to get your head around the new concept of pre-crastination.

If all of your tasks seem somewhat torturous to you, you might be able to ease the pain by getting rid of the ugliest “toads” as quickly as you can.

The Cons

The primary disadvantage of doing your difficult tasks first is probably that it will make it especially hard to get started on your workday.

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A lot of people aren’t exactly at their peak performance mode when they enter the office. They need to ease into the workday, maybe have a cup or two of coffee to stimulate them.

If that’s you, doing your most difficult tasks first would probably be a costly mistake. Hold off on “eating those frogs” until you have the willpower and fortitude to choke them down.

Conclusion

Should you do easy or difficult tasks first? It seems like a cop-out to say that it depends on the person, but sometimes that’s the honest answer, and that is definitely the case here.

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Hopefully this article helps inform you of what type of worker you are, offering clues to whether you fall into the constructive procrastination or pre-crastination camps. Good luck on your pursuit of maximum productivity!

More Tips for Beating Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Courtney Dirks via flickr.com

Reference

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