Top Exercises for the Right Brain

Medically Reviewed by Christopher Melinosky, MD on May 12, 2023
3 min read

Common beliefs about “right-brained people” are that they are more creative, open-minded, intuitive, and visual solvers. These may be good descriptors for a personality, and emotions are expressed in the right brain. However, the left brain vs. right brain theory does not have scientific evidence to back it up. The brain actually works in more asymmetrical patterns, and different activities stimulate different lobes. 

Though the brain is not symmetrical, it does have different functions that help all of it run efficiently. The brain works in asymmetrical patterns, and certain personality traits can be formed and developed by doing particular activities more than others.

Activating your right brain through mental stimulation and activities has been shown to increase vitality and potentially generate new brain cells. This stimulation helps your mind stay sharp. People who do not have enough mental stimulation could be more prone to Alzheimer’s disease.  

Mental exercises that stimulate your brain help improve cognitive function, reduce anxiety and depression risk, and improve sleep and quality of life. There are many benefits to right brain exercises. 

Physical and aerobic exercise is beneficial in maintaining brain health and reducing the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. But cognitive health is the most important part of brain health, and it can be preserved through mental and social stimulation. These activities are the best ways to stimulate your right brain. 

Here are ways to stimulate your creative right brain: 

Socially Active

Visiting with family and joining in on social events, getting together with friends, or volunteering your time at a church or hospital are great ways to be social and have physical interactions and conversations.

Strong ties to family and friends have been associated with a lower risk of dementia, lower blood pressure, and even a longer life expectancy.

Visual Arts

Drawing, painting, and putting things down on paper helps you explore your creative side by shutting off conscious thoughts. This type of exercise can involve any craft that you’d like to try.

Performing Arts

Participating in a play, act, dance, or other performing art interpretation is a great way to get moving and focus on your right brain exploration. Concentrating on these acts allows you to shut off the logical thoughts and help stimulate creativity of the concept. 

Practicing Mindfulness

Meditating or attending yoga class are two ways to achieve mindfulness. Calming your mind and quieting your thoughts can train you to see how your brain works and understand your thought processes. Once you’ve achieved this understanding, you’ll have an easier time being observant, relaxing, and reaching optimal creativity.

These exercises are meant to encourage creativity and promote right brain activity. If you feel frustrated or overwhelmed by the exercises, take a step away. You can always come back to the exercises at another time.

Creativity can feel like it’s fleeting and you'll never get it back, but when you come to a block in your mind, it’s important to step away and return with a new perspective. This gives you the chance to stimulate more of your right brain than before.