Left-handed people make up about 10% of the world’s population. For a long time, being left-handed was seen as abnormal or negative. However, research has shown that left-handedness comes with some unique advantages. Here are some of the perks of being left-handed:
Studies have found that left-handed people tend to be more creative and have superior skills in divergent thinking. This means they excel at coming up with novel ideas and seeing things from different perspectives. The brains of left-handers are structured slightly differently, which may contribute to out-of-the-box thinking.
Some famous left-handed creative geniuses include:
- Leonardo da Vinci
- Paul McCartney
- Jimi Hendrix
- Albert Einstein
Better multitasking abilities
Being left-handed activates the right side of the brain more, increasing access to the hemisphere responsible for spatial abilities and facial recognition. This boosts lefties’ multitasking capabilities and ability to process multiple stimuli at once.
A study found that left-handers were able to:
- Track moving objects more accurately
- Detect facial emotions better
- Process 3D objects and understand spatial relationships easily
Superior language skills
On average, left-handers tend to have better language abilities than right-handers. They often have advanced linguistic development in childhood and excel at language learning. The left side of the brain contains speech areas like Broca’s area, which may be stimulated more in lefties.
Evidence shows left-handers often:
- Learn to talk earlier as toddlers
- Acquire larger vocabularies from an early age
- Score higher on verbal IQ tests
- Exhibit enhanced writing abilities
Better problem-solving abilities
Studies indicate that left-handers tend to make decisions faster and more correctly under pressure. Being left-handed may correlate with superior intuition and reasoning skills. Lefties only make up 25% of Mensa memberships (high IQ society), but this is still significantly above the 10% population rate.
Research has linked left-handedness with:
- Enhanced use of both sides of the brain during problem-solving
- Increased cognitive flexibility
- More efficient and faster information processing
Superior sports performance
When it comes to sports, left-handers often have the upper hand. Since lefties are used to navigating a right-handed world, they adapt skills better suited for sports like baseball, boxing, tennis, and fencing. Sports psychology explains that this minority advantage gives them an edge.
Some advantages lefties have in sports include:
- The element of surprise against right-handed opponents
- Enhanced spatial abilities helpful in tracking balls
- Better peripheral vision and ability to react quickly
- Advantages in one-on-one sports like tennis, boxing, and fencing
Some research indicates that left-handed people earn 10 to 15% more on average than right-handed people. This may be tied to traits like enhanced creativity and critical thinking. The innate neurological differences of lefties may predispose them to more analytical professions.
Studies show left-handers gravitate towards careers like:
- Legal professions
These fields tend to provide higher salaries due to their complex nature.
Growing up as a minority in a right-handed world requires lefties to problem-solve more frequently. Simple everyday tasks like using scissors, desks, or can openers require adaptation. This constant challenge makes lefties more resilient when faced with adversity later in life.
Being left-handed may contribute to:
- Increased independence and self-confidence
- More mental flexibility and comfort thinking differently
- Greater perseverance through obstacles
Some studies indicate that left-handers have slightly higher emotional intelligence and empathy. Because they are more accustomed to being different, they may be more understanding of alternate viewpoints and forgiving of others’ faults.
Higher levels of empathy may allow lefties to:
- Relate better to the emotional states of others
- Communicate more effectively
- Excel in professions like counseling, teaching, and social work
Better conversational skills
Overall, research indicates left-handers tend to have an easier time engaging in conversation. Enhanced language processing abilities give lefties an advantage in verbal expression and communication. Their innate creativity also allows them to think ‘outside the box’ during discussions.
Left-handers tend to:
- Have larger vocabularies from a young age
- Use more hand gestures while conversing
- Tell engaging stories
- Speak more conversationally
Enhanced mental health
While left-handers used to face stigma, modern societies are increasingly embracing left-handedness. Studies show that left-handed people today have similar or even better mental health outcomes compared to right-handers.
Research indicates lefties may be at a lower risk for:
- Bipolar disorder
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Coping with being different from an early age may give lefties cognitive skills that help protect mental wellbeing.
While left-handed people have faced bias in the past, research shows that being left-handed comes with a variety of advantages. From enhanced creativity, language skills, problem-solving and sports abilities, lefties excel in many areas. Mental flexibility, resilience, empathy and conversational skills also give left-handers an edge in relationships and wellbeing.
Rather than seeing left-handedness as abnormal, modern science shows that being left-handed activates unique strengths and skills. By recognizing and cultivating their natural talents, left-handers can thrive and succeed while making diverse contributions to society.