Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Couple of Books

Last February, at a conference on IT Support, I heard about a book called A Whole New Mind, by Daniel H. Pink. In it, he postulates that, although the American economy has been dominated by left-brained thinkers for the past century, in the future right brain skills will become more valuable. His reasons for thinking so are well-reasoned and seem eminently logical to my left-dominated brain.

He goes on to say that there are 6 basic talents/skills that reside in the right brain that will be useful going forward: Design, Story, Symphony, Empathy, Play and Meaning. At the end of the chapter dealing with each of these, he references resources for improving your skills in each area. The links I've provided over the past couple of days came from the chapter on Empathy.

At the same conference, I picked up Emotions Revealed, by Paul Ekman, a great book on facial expressions. There are individual chapters on Sadness/Agony, Anger, Surprise/Fear, Disgust/Contempt and Enjoyable Emotions. He has photographs of people experiencing these emotions (including a phenomenal shot of a couple of guys' faces as a girl falls past their balcony, 17 stories above the ground). He also took pictures of his 14-year-old daughter conveying each emotion and then literally cut and pasted the photos to show what partial experiences of these emotions might look like.

If you're a writer, and you want to know how to convey non-verbal signals for various emotions, I heartily recommend these books.

And now, another test:

If you find him in 3 seconds, it suggests that you're right-brain dominant.

I never did find him.

(And for the left-brained among us, I'll post info on how to locate him in the comments.)

25 comments:

Jeanne said...

He's in the lower left-hand corner, maybe a half-inch from the side.

Andrea said...

I found him right away!! Great post, Jeanne!!! :)

Kabbalah Rookie said...

I found him straight away too - even though I wasn't aware I was looking for a Human Bean...

Chef E said...

Now I want to check the books out, cool...

Comedy Goddess said...

I got this in an email a while ago. I could not see him. And then when he was pointed out to me, I was creeped out! Something about the scale was unnerving.

I am just bringing down the curve on all your posts. Sigh.

HoodChick said...

I've seen this before and it still took me more than 3 seconds. I blame it on the hangover.

the mama bird diaries said...

I found him! And it freaked me out.

Coffee with Cathy said...

Thanks for the book recommendations. I'm sort of middle-brained -- I didn't find him at first and then wanted to edit the photo so he was in a different spot!

Maelstrom said...

I contend that if you find him immediately you may have something in common with Rain Man. You probably also know how many beans there are in the picture.

Maelstrom said...

And drive slow in the driveway.

K said...

Even with the directions, I can't really find him.

I'm a bit left brain dominant as well.

Thanks for the book suggestions.

Jeanne said...

K -- that's probably because he's more like an inch-and-a-half from the left side. He's an actual live human being, and you can just see his cocoa-colored, domed bald head. He's the only "bean" with eyes and a nose!

Dedene said...

Jeanne, After your last comment, I finally saw him. Yukkkkk! creepy.

I don't think that I am left- or right-brained.

Rachel Cotterill said...

The faces book sounds really interesting. I had seen the coffee picture before, and it took me a fair few seconds the first time.

rachael chatoor said...

Even if you are not a writer, I would say these books would be great to read. The balcony pic.....I would be mesmerised by it I think, feeling it, esp if it is a phenominal as you say.

Anna Lefler said...

And I thought *I* was a coffee fanatic.

Fabulous post and much to think about (on *some* side of my brain - it's up for grabs, I guess).

I just love your blog.

:^) Anna

Vodka Mom said...

I do NOT see him. shit.

Vodka Mom said...

i found him. yikes- he's a bit creepy.

Frogs in my formula said...

I couldn't find him until I saw where he was from the comments. Great post.

CDB said...

Thanks for the emotion-book tips.. that sounds incredibly useful for character development (something I'm continually working on.)

And I thought this was one of those magic images that you stare at for a long time, and an image POPS out at you. Glad you put me out of my misery!!!

Rubberbacon said...

Well I just suck as an artist. I couldn't find it until I got the further instructions in the comments. So much for advancement in right brained thinkers taking over the world!

High Desert Diva said...

Guess I'm right brain dominant...I spotted him as soon as I looked.

anymommy said...

Very very left brained apparently. I needed all the clues. Creepy.

I loved the post, though!

Mammatalk said...

Well, I needed a clue and a minute to find him. What's he doing in there anyway? :-)

Great books!

Jan said...

Hmmmm. I found him easily. Where have I been lately? I am so far behind on all my blogs. Working sure gets in the way of my leisure time.

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