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For about 2 years, I have been trying to do as much as I can with my left hand. I want to one be as comfortable with my left hand as my right. It hasn't worked so work so far.

It's just that... - It's inconvenient (writing with my left hand means I write slower and not as neat) - Some things are dangerous (eg. cutting up vegetables with left hand) - It's frustrating - I keep forgetting to do it

So far, I think apart from some tasks like using the mouse with my left hand, I'm really having made too much progress.

I was wondering, if there are any books or computer programs or any resources or advice that could help me become ambidextrous.

Or even, is it even possible?

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I would like to caution you about using power tools...it's very dangerous to use certain power tools with the hand that they were not designed to be used with. –  silvermaple Feb 7 '12 at 2:26
    
Being able to manage both hands with the same skill can be less productive sometimes since you have to think which hand to use instead of doing it by "instinct." –  pferor Feb 8 '12 at 13:20
    
Agree with the above. Unless you're doing something that has a distinct advantage with doing with the left hand, it's counter-productive. Also most tools are designed for right handed people, so it makes sense for a left hander to learn ambidexterity, but not vice versa. –  Muz Feb 7 '13 at 8:29
    
If this is a conceptual question rather than a productivity one, maybe it might be better to ask this in Cogsci.SE? –  Muz Feb 7 '13 at 8:30
    
@Muz - sorry can you give me an example of something where the cost of maybe a millisecond to decide which side to use outweighs the flexibility of being ambidextrous? In fact, things like playing sports where decisions need to made fast, benefit from ambidexterity (eg. soccer players generally learn to kick with both feet). –  stickman Feb 7 '13 at 12:25

4 Answers 4

Just start doing it.

Next time you reach for something, switch it to the opposite hand. Just don't try anything while driving. There is a line somewhere in there between switching your mouse hand and using your feet to signal a lane change.

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Practice. Practice. And then practice some more.

Taking up activities that require both hands to do similar actions will help. Juggling and handball, for example.

When learning a new activity, start with the "stupid" hand first.

I'm a lefty that has learned to do many things with my right hand (in part from necessity). I also have taught juggling to a lot of people, which demonstrates hand dominance incredibly quickly. Practice is the solution.

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Try simpler things:

  1. Put your phone in your left pocket and as far as you can remember, try using it with your left hand.
  2. Put a post-it on your mirror stating "Brush with left hand"
  3. Buy a left-handed device to force yourself to attune yourself. Maybe buy a left-handed mouse. Swap your computer mouse settings to make them left handed. & so on
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I suspect but also that 'handedness' is a bit more complex than first. So, for example, Peter Benchley is known to be a 'determinedly right-handed left-hander' in that for most daily activities he is right handed (throwing a ball, chopping food, threading a needle) but he writes left handed. For classification purposes our culture is to assume that writing is such a complex and subtle thing that we say 'He is left-handed' rather than 'He writes with his left hand'.

Following on into training your hand - I can think of no logical reason why one hand can not be trained to do something regardless of how the other is trained - what would be interesting to me would be if you tried learning a new skill (solving rubiks cubes one-handed pops into my head) with your less dominant hand and then tried it with your dominant hand...

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I'm the same way. For all intents and purposes I'm left-handed (and proud of it); I write and eat with my left hand. However, I play baseball and bowl like a righty...swinging a bat lefty is as strange as holding a pen in my right hand. I just do whatever feels comfortable. As for "training" to write with your off hand, people have been trying that for the longest time. My great uncle was a lefty forced to write with his right hand, and his penmanship was so bad that he had to buy a new-fangled typewriter so anyone could read what he wrote. –  silvermaple Feb 7 '12 at 2:23

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