Designed by Marcus Michaels for the Noun Project

Designed by Marcus Michaels for the Noun Project

A brand new theory on how different parts of your brain interact is breaking up the idea of typical left brain vs. right brain dichotomy. New studies show that it’s all about how the top-brain talks to the bottom-brain, and the order in which emphasis is placed can determine how you think, and thus, who you are. Stephen M. Kosslyn and G. Wayne Miller, for the Atlantic:

The top brain formulates and executes plans (which often involve deciding where to move objects or how to move the body in space), whereas the bottom brain classifies and interprets incoming information about the world. The two halves always work together; most important, the top brain uses information from the bottom brain to formulate its plans (and to reformulate them, as they unfold over time)…

In this sense, you can rely on one or the other brain system to a greater or lesser degree. 

Based on these findings, your brain works in either the Mover mode, Perceiver mode, Stimulator mode, or Adaptor mode. An example:

Mover Mode results when the top- and bottom-brain systems are both highly utilized. When people think in this mode, they are inclined to make and act on plans (using the top-brain system) and to register the consequences of doing so (using the bottom-brain system), subsequently adjusting plans on the basis of feedback. Ac­cording to our theory, people who habitually rely on Mover Mode typically are most comfortable in positions that allow them to plan, act, and see the consequences of their actions.

This could be a huge key in helping us understand where one another is coming from, or even in self-analysis.

Read the rest of the types, and the science behind it, here.

  • Bo Percival

    Amazing post! This is so great. Thank you very much for sharing!

  • Jerome D Lubbe

    This science refers to much of the new research regarding functional neurology, connectomes and synchronicity. The brain is set up in a very similar manner to a corporate structure. You have the CEO (frontal lobe) who works with the board of directors (parietal, temporal and occipital lobes) who communicate directly and HEAVILY with the EA (the cerebellum) who coordinates and calibrates the executive decisions made by the CEO. All of their communications are cc’d to the employees (the components of the body responsible for carrying out the proposed actions, regardless of what they may be), and ultimately upper level management makes the call and everyone springs into action. All of this in nanoseconds. The brain is a masterpiece of efficiency.

  • JeffreyDavis11

    Thanks for this. Two other resources: Kirton’s Adaptor-Innovatory Theory. He’s been on this trail for decades without the neurology component. Also, Dan Goleman’s latest book Focus distills much of this research. The top-bottom research provides the basis for his thesis that learning the nuances of focus leads to excellence.

  • Anthony Davis

    To me, the brain is just a biological functioning unit. What’s more important is the mind and how we experience it. And when we’re in our ‘right mind’ we get the results we’re looking for, whatever complexity or situation we’re facing. And but for our thinking, we’d all experience this, all of the time.

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