Why Doodling is Awesome

I have a habit of doodling.  I draw on everything.  I always have, with the exception of college that I can’t really explain except I think perhaps too much physics sucked the joy out of life.  Or something.

I do it at work all the time, which perhaps is ill-advised, especially in big meetings when I am sitting next to someone I do not know and do not know what their job is and he is staring at my notebook wondering why there are landsquid and turtleducks everywhere and no doubt wondering how some crazy person off the street managed to wander into said meeting.

In my defense, I am also somewhat narcoleptic and if I am forced to not move for a few hours I will fall asleep and that is more unprofessional than the stick people dancing amongst my notes.  In college I staved off nap attacks with a ridiculous amount of sudoku games.

So, Kit, I hear you ask, why is doodling so awesome?  Well, let me tell you.

Aside from the ability to keep you awake, it helps you focus.  I do use it in meetings, but it’s helpful to just do, to clear your mind and just draw whatever decides to spring from your pencil.  It’s kind of like free-writing, honestly.  Problems solve themselves.  It is relaxing, and sometimes you end up with something neat that you’re willing to show other people.

It does not, however, help that I have made up a doodlebug song that is now stuck in my head.

Do you doodle, squiders?  Do you find it helps?

7 responses to this post.

  1. I’ve never doodled quite to that extent before, but maybe I should try, if it will help me focus on my writing more. I tend to steer clear of anything non-writing-related, because to put it quite blunt, my visual artistic skills are beyond zero.
    And that’s being positive.

    After reading this blog though, I do think I’ll see about trying. I have a bad habit of knowing what I want to write, but not being able to focus on it. A short break to draw (or write) something entirely unrelated doesn’t sound like such a bad idea.


    • Sometimes your brain just needs a change of pace. I remember a writing friend of mine – though I don’t remember who or what program they were doing – going through some sort of process where drawing was recommended as some sort of creativity flow activity.

      I admit I also doodle my characters and scenes at times, but it still seems to help.


  2. I don’t really doodle because my drawing skills are so lacking, even my doodles look terrible. Though I do remember in college drawing little USS Enterprises firing star-shaped photon torpedoes at particularly vexing problems I was trying to work out. The Enterprise has lots of straight lines, so it was easy to doodle.

    I’ve already read somewhere [citation needed] a study where people who doodled during classes actually had better retention of the discussed material than those individuals furiously scribbling down every word the instructor spouted. Something about engaging a different part of the brain or whatnot.

    You should post your doodles. 🙂


    • Urg. I’ve ALSO, not already, read somewhere. Stupid brain not paying attention. I must have been doodling as I typed this reply.

      Now there’s a thought. Can you doodle while typing/using a computer? And what impact does that have on the creative process?


      • I bet you could doodle with something that has a touch screen like an ipad.

        In undergrad, I was definitely in the furious scribbling down every word crowd because if I thought about how to organize it, I would lose it.

        That said, on more discussion based lectures I did doodle or write quotes. My life sciences binder had Lord of the Rings quotes on it.

  3. I don’t doodle. It is… not in me. Ah well.


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