In his book, “A Whole New Mind,” author Pink explores how we are moving into the “Conceptual Age” from the “Information Age” where right-brain qualities will dominate. He theorizes that due to abundance of materials, automation of processes, and finding cheaper labor overseas, our society will need to depend on qualities such as creativity and empathy.
After explaining the new age he believes we are entering, Pink divides the book into 6 topics that he believes are vital; design, story, symphony, empathy, play, and meaning. Each chapter explains what he is referencing with real-world examples as well as a “portfolio,” that has resources to enhance each trait. He theorizes that computer engineering, medicine, and law professions to name a few, are going through transformations where major parts of their profession is either automated or found overseas for cheaper. He encourages the reader to not give up on these professions but to utilize more right-brained traits in order to thrive.
“We’ll need to supplement our well-developed high-tech abilities with abilities that are high concept and high touch. (As I mentioned in the Introduction, high concept involves the ability to create artistic and emotional beauty, to detect patterns and opportunities, to craft a satisfying narrative, and to combine seemingly unrelated ideas into a novel invention. High touch involves the ability to empathize, to understand the subtleties of human interaction, to find joy in one’s self and to elicit it in others, and to stretch beyond the quotidian, in pursuit of purpose and meaning).”
This is the second book of Pink’s that I have read. I really enjoy his way of using real-world examples for understanding a phenomenon. This book reminded me of Brene Brown’s “The Gifts of Imperfection” and he referenced Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning.” I love it when worlds collide! The overall message felt comforting for a as Pink calls it “R-directed thinking” person. Not to fear our “L-directed thinkers,” your skills are still valuable, you just may need to exercise some of the right side qualities and this book has the answer for you. As a caution, this book was written in 2006, so some of the information seems dated.
Read this book if:
- You are fascinated with understanding the new age and how to stay relevant with your career or skills
- You are interested in strengthening your right-brain qualities
- You are more right-brained and curious how your skills are useful and needed in the future
Pink, D. H. (2006). A whole new mind: Why right-brainers will rule the future. London: Cyan.