People are strange

I am in two minds about something. In fact, it seems that I am in two minds about everything. No, I am not schizophrenic  At least I don’t think I am. I am going to keep telling myself that, just to make myself feel better about it.

What’s that you say? You too? Have you watched Jill Bolte Taylor’s video, “Stroke of Insight” too? If not, you can find it on TED.

We’ve heard it before I am sure. Our brain is two separate components, which communicate through a bundle of nerve fibres. Jill actually experienced this, via a stroke. And the mind was her area of expertise. So she studied it, studied herself. And following surgery and eight years of effort, recovered to tell us of the results. Amazing.

Our left side is a serial processor, it does one thing at a time, step by step. Hmmm, very male like. It analyses stuff. And it forgets stuff. It just deals with whatever it needs to deal with at that moment. Someone with a damaged right side, can concentrate on something, say the fork in their hand, and the plate, table, etc, doesnt exist to them.

The right hand side of your brain, processes lots of stuff at once, it deals with context, history and possible futures. It houses your memory functions and deals with thinking.

People have a dominant side of the brain, either the left or right, which impacts how they learn new things. So I am wondering, how did evolution do this. How did it give us a brain of two completely different sides. And was there a past version of our species (or a future one), where we could consciously observe communication between them. How often do these sides disagree on things?

People are weird. And just keep getting stranger and stranger. So the next time you see or hear someone acting a bit odd, spare a thought for them. And for yourself. We must all be a little mad somehow.

Be Remarkable

I am gradually becoming a fan of TED. TED is all about “ideas worth spreading” to use their own tagline.

Free videos and talks, from people at the top of their game, talking you through topics, many of which you probably never heard of. I know I hadn’t.

Why though? Why watch this? The old WIIFM question (whats in it for me).

The range of topics is quite breathtaking for one. And no matter how good we think we are, we can always learn from others. Particularly when those people are experts and engaging too.

For me, there are several reasons.

First up, I don’t feel comfortable presenting. I get nervous as everyone does, but over time I have improved. And I know that when I am presenting something I am passionate about, I can draw people in and carry them with me. Usually with the aid of an adhoc diagram or two. So watching the body language of these people, and learning from them, is good.

Really though, that is a secondary benefit. It’s the content that I find really interesting. Take this video from Seth Godin. I challenge you to watch all 18 minutes and not come away feeling upbeat and thinking of ways that you can “be remarkable”.