October 21


Move Over Right and Left Brain: It’s About Top and Bottom Now!

By Staff Writer

October 21, 2013

brain function

Do you love taking personality tests? I have always loved them, especially in a group setting where everyone takes the test and you discover why people do things the way they do, and how you can use that understanding to build better teams. The latest entry in this type of testing is related to a new book that is being released early in November – “Top Brain, Bottom Brain: Surprising Insights Into How You Think,” written by neuroscientist and psychologist Stephen M. Kosslyn, PhD., and G. Wayne Miller.

You have probably heard most of your life about right-brained vs left-brained people, that based on the dominant hemisphere of their brain are artsy-fartsy or Spock-like in their approach to life. A plethora of books and personal development programs have been created around this assumption.

The only trouble is, it really isn’t true, according to science…

[box type=”info” align=”aligncenter” width=”750″ ]Enter the top and/or bottom brain approach, presented in this book.[/box]

The theory is that the top brain and the bottom brain are working all the time throughout our lives, but you may use the two systems in different ways. How you tend to do this results in your “cognitive mode” – how you approach a situation. The top-brain tends to use information about the environment to formulate goals and plans, along with expectations of results, and how what is happening correlates to those plans. The bottom-brain is more involved in organizing data from the senses, and comparing it to what is in the memory, and uses that comparison to interpret what is happening in the world.

The four different cognitive modes come into play with what people tend to bring into play in an optional way. Some people love to make intricate and complex plans while others may tend to classify what is happening in an extremely detailed way.

Mover Mode: People who are movers use both top-brain and bottom-brain in optional ways, resulting in someone that likes to plan and see/adjust to consequences. These are good leaders.

Perceiver Mode: Perceivers use their bottom-brain more in optional ways, resulting in someone that can make sense from what is going on and interpret that into the bigger picture. These people tend to operate more in the shadows than the spotlight.

Stimulator Mode: These people use their top-brain more, loving to make complex plans but not always seeing the consequences and adjusting them as a result. They are “outside the box” thinkers, but not always realistic.

Adaptor mode: These folks don’t use either area in optional ways, and they tend to be more in the “flow” than planning and classifying, but are often the people that carry out the plans of others, not being particularly interested in making the plans themselves.

You can see how including people of all types would be most beneficial in a team environment! Read more detail about this new way of approaching brain functions and dominance on the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304410204579139423079198270, or check out the website for the book, http://www.topbrainbottombrain.com/

And if you want to find out what your mode of thinking is, you can take this short, 20-question quiz.

The book will be released on November 5.

About the author

Our staff writers come from various backgrounds in the neuroscience, personal development, brain science and psychology fields. Many started out as with us as contributors!

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