"A Whole New Mind" by Daniel Pink

"A Whole New Mind" by Daniel Pink is a book from 2005 about "why right-brainers will rule the future", so if you want to rule the future, or just be highly successful, you should consider making time to read this book!

I've seen this book recommended many times in the past couple years on websites and in other books. So this week I went to the library and checked out a copy. While not wanting to rule the world, I was curious about why so many people were recommending this book. After reading about half the book, I've been tempted four or five times to put it down to start doing some of the activities recommended in the book or to write a blog post about what I've read.

Some of the ideas the book lays out are a bit disturbing both for me personally and for many engineering and technology types who have helped build large sectors of the American economy, including the internet and the high tech world in general. A large number of those people are predominantly left-brained. That's why they are so good at what they do. This book suggests those logical, sequential left-brain tasks are increasingly being moved to lower wage areas of the world or to computers. Somewhat the same thing that Thomas Friedman says in "The World Is Flat." As a result, Daniel Pink says, left-brain Americans are going to have to become more right-brain, or at least more balanced, if they want to maintain their standard of living. They need to learn how to provide something which the lower-cost labor regions can't provide, and a more right-brain approach to life is a big part of the answer.

One of the nice aspects of the book is that it provides specific recommendations for improving your right-brain capabilities. After each chapter about the six right-brain senses there is a 'Portfolio' section with usable, interesting action items. I plan to do at least some of those exercises myself, although my days don't have enough hours in them to do all of the things suggested. That's ok-- I'm sure there's a limit to how much my brain can switch from being left-brain to being right-brain!

Based on what I've read so far, this book is highly recommended to others for reading. Especially if you're an engineer or technology type person. You won't change your stripes, but the book may make you aware of opportunities you would otherwise have not seen.



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