Terri's Reviews > A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future

A Whole New Mind by Daniel H. Pink
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Mar 03, 2009

it was amazing

I am generally not a non-fiction reader, but, simply put - this is a must read! "A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future" contains potentially life-changing information. For me it came at the perfect time. I have been thinking a lot about the change that will inevitably be a part of all of our lives as we deal with the current economic crisis. This is a turning point in our history. When I ran the current situation through the filter of reading "A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future," though it was written before the current economic situation reared its ugly head, the current situation seemed more like a time for hope than a time for despair. The book is a fast, easy read. Pink talks about research in a fun, clear manner. He includes many anecdotes and much research to support his ideas. And the thing that makes this book truly exceptional is that he includes doable strategies for actually making yourself a better person.

Pink - a noted futurist, speaker, and writer - posits that because of abundance, Asia, and automation that our traditional focus on left-brain thinking will not be enough to take us into the future. The future will depend on developing the right sides of our brains. His work is based on lots of research, which he includes in his discussion. His theory is that we need to develop the six senses of design, story, symphony, empathy, play, and meaning in order to develop the right sides of our brains. In the past, our culture has revered and developed left-brain thinking, rather than right brain thinking. In the first part of the book, Pink discusses brain research. In the second half, he covers each of the six senses and then gives several suggestions for exercises that the individual can do to develop each of these senses.

My head was spinning with how I could use these things to improve as an individual, as well as how I could pass these ideas on to others. I can see many implications for these ideas on both a personal level, on a work place level, and on social level (for family and friends). I want to give the book to everyone I know - or take pieces of it and give it to people who might benefit from it. For example, I thought of sending everyone I know a "thank-you" journal. One of the ideas in the book is to have a journal in which once a year, on your birthday, you list everything that you are thankful for - one for each year of your age. I love that! This is one way to develop the sense of "meaning" in one's life. My friend Jean and I just talked about maybe taking a drawing class together - one of the things suggested in the book to develop the right-brain sense of "symphony" is to take a drawing class!

I have a college age child who is currently being courted by some big corporations - corporations that one might think of as left-brained entities - for summer internships. It is right-brained skills that are constantly being referenced and encouraged in this process. The connections between the book and everything I have witnessed in watching my child go through this process were surprising to me. At least in this instance, Pink's theories seem to be very plausible.

The book deserved more than a score of five out of five stars! It should be required reading for all of us! Even if one doesn't agree with Pink's theories, it is great fodder from discussion. I suspect that the book might be difficult for left-brain thinkers to swallow.
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