©Arlene R. Taylor PhD 

altAlmost anyone can decide to learn a specific skill and if he/she works hard at it can develop some level of competence over time. That may be different, however, from following one's brain bent.

One researcher explained it this way. If you work very diligently at something for which your brain has no energy advantage, over time you can probably develop mediocre competence. If on the other hand you work diligently at something that matches your brain bent, over time you are more likely to excel and to become exceedingly competent.

Estimates are that it takes 10,000 hours of dedicated, wise, and effective practice to develop world-class competence in a specific skill (e.g., instrumental musician, sports athlete). Some thinks this same estimate may apply to other areas of competence. Regardless, competence required a great deal of practice. If you are willing to invest that much time and energy, do so in your area of brain bent, as this may increase your likelihood of reaching very high level of competence with less energy expenditures.

Following are examples of what an individual may do best based on  brain bent.

altPrioritizing Division

altEnvisioning Division 

Individuals with a brain bent in the prioritizing division tend to excel at making logical decisions based on data, especially when this involves allocation of resources

They generally prefer to make the decisions themselves or delegate who will

They usually work quickly and in control, using technical concepts

They tend to be very competitive and try to win

They can become workaholic in an attempt to achieve their goals

They may become bored when presented with either elaborate explanations or a lack of data

They tend to want things covered rapidly, to make decisions rapidly, and to identify and compare options in a timely manner

In a nutshell they want logically, precisely, and analytically to strategize and win







If Extroverted:

  • Negotiation
  • Leading in times of controlled growth and plentiful resources
  • Fighting, forcing, or driving to win






If Introverted:

  • Engineering research
  • Financial analysis decision making
  • Medical and scientific research
  • Accounting 


Individuals with a brain bent in the envisioning division tend to excel at anticipating and making changes, at seeing the big picture and trending, and may be very metaphoric, adaptable, and creative (e.g., “solving the impossible” which is often seen by others a “risk taking”)

They tend to be intuition-driven and enjoy innovative trouble-shooting, often providing humor and amusement through a quirky sense of bizarre or unusual

They tend to do spatial thinking and planning (e.g., furniture placement, packing suitcase or car, envisioning body organs during surgery)

They usually work in starts and fits (e.g., like greased lightening and then need a break) and can be oblivious to time when absorbed in a project

They may become quickly bored with repetition, routine, rules and regulations, “red tape,” or too many details

They tend to shift jobs frequently, seeking new stimulation and opportunity

In a nutshell they want to trouble–shoot and to find ways to avoid day-to-day operational maintenance that would be too routine for their constantly changing brains.

If Extroverted:

  • Creating, articulating, and sustaining a personal or corporate vision with which to lead others
  • Founding new ventures
  • Troubleshooting in highly complex, dynamic situations from business to fighting large fires
  • Negotiating
  • Leading in a charismatic or motivational manner, especially in difficult times

If Introverted:

  • Computer programming, systems design
  • Basic research, especially in chemistry or physics
  • Designing logos, graphics, and layouts
  • Reading “invisible patterns” from small, isolated quantities of data (e.g., geologist or futurist) 


altMaintaining Division

altHarmonizing Division  


Individuals with a brain bent in the maintaining division tend to excel at dependably supplying services, especially those needed for everyday living in this culture

They generally like to follow routines (especially when they understand the reason for the procedures) and can do so repetitively and accurately

They usually work methodically using established routine, attend to detail, and meet deadlines

They tend to dislike negotiation and want regular hours (e.g., may unionize to get the hours and benefits they think they can depend on)

They tend to seek and demand a great deal of sameness and procedure in everyday living (detailed routines, more rituals that occur at a specific time each day, week, or month)

In a nutshell they want predictability and stability

If Extroverted:

  • Assembling, using, operating, cleaning, and maintaining machines after thorough and adequate experience-based training
  • Repairing machines when the diagnosis and repair processes have been proceduralized and require a minimum of troubleshooting and inventiveness (or where a computerized expert system is used to diagnose more complex problems)
  • Overseeing proceduralized productions

If Introverted:

  • Completing and maintaining established office and legal forms accurately
  • Keeping well organized and accurate/legible books, files, accounts, records
  • Organizing and managing stock, parts, and supplies
  • Monitoring schedules and productivity levels
  • Attending thoroughly and regularly to established procedural, operational, legal, and financial details 


Individuals with a brain bent in the harmonizing division tend to excel at building trust, harmony, peaceful foundations, and good will

They may allow their pace of work to be driven by their feelings or mood

They usually work better when they like who they are working with, and need frequent breaks to connect and chat

They tend to dislike deadlines and budgetary restraints, and while they like regular hours they may be willing to work late at times to “help out”

They tend to be nurturing and spiritual

They tend to be sensitive and interpersonal and worry about other people and how everyone is feeling; they want and need to be close to others in situations that enable them to feel connected.

In a nutshell they want peace and harmony and want life to work for everyone

If Extroverted:

  • Developing and maintaining positive customer relations including building goodwill and handling customer complaints; or employee relations; or community and public relations
  • Developing and maintaining positive media relations, building goodwill and trust with the press
  • Managing consumer affairs




If Introverted:

  • Playing a musical instrument
  • Providing pastoral counseling, spiritual comfort, and guidance 

Refer to Cerebral Divisions and Functions for additional information.