Beyond the Margin: Embracing the Healing Power of Doodling

Beyond the Margin: Embracing the Healing Power of Doodling

  • June 13, 2024

In the margins of textbooks, on the edges of meeting agendas, or dotted in the blank spaces of a notebook, doodles emerge as silent companions to our thoughts. Often dismissed as idle scribbles, doodling carries a wealth of therapeutic potential for you to discover, and maybe adopt 


What’s Doodling?

Doodling holds deeper significance than meets the eye. More than a bit of sketching; it’s a tool for learning, expression, and introspection. 

Defined as “making spontaneous marks with your mind and body to help yourself think,” doodling challenges traditional notions of distraction. Some see it as a gateway to reflection and quietude, while others view it as a form of proactive daydreaming with subconscious therapeutic value. 

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flower doodle

7 Benefits of Doodling

  1. Outlet for creativity: Doodling offers a low-pressure creative way to express oneself. 
  2. Great for concentration: Doodling boosts concentration and recall, improving memory by 29%. 
  3. Promotes catharsis: Doodling can tap into deep emotions, fostering psychological balance and catharsis. 
  4. Encourages humour: Drawing, especially faces, sparks humour. It’s a great way to lift spirits during stressful periods.  
  5. Useful for anxiety: Doodling can help you focus on the present, easing anxiety before stressful events. 
  6. Helps solve problems: Doodling sparks creativity, which can lead to spontaneous problem-solving insights. It lets your mind wander in often productive ways!  
  7. Encourages self-discovery: Doodling unveils inner thoughts and feelings, sometimes revealing symbolic meanings. 

woman doodling in a journal

How to Get Started With Doodling

  1. Start simple: Don’t worry about your drawing skills. Begin with basic shapes like lines, dots, circles, and triangles. They’re the building blocks of more complex doodles. 
  2. Mindful beginnings: Find a comfortable spot, take a few deep breaths, and commit to being present. Let your pen flow freely on the paper without worrying about what the outcome will look like. 
  3. Creative exploration: Fill your doodle with whatever comes to mind—waves, dots, colours, anything. Embrace the freedom and explore different possibilities. 
  4. Check-in: Pause midway through your doodle. Notice your thoughts and feelings. Are you relaxed or stressed? Trust the process and let go of any judgments. 
  5. Reflection: When you finish, take a moment to appreciate your creation. Turn your doodle around and see it from different angles. Embrace the perspectives it offers. 


What begins as aimless marks on paper can blossom into a profound journey of self-discovery through the art of doodling. From fostering concentration to unlocking creativity, doodling serves as a testament to the boundless depths of the human mind and its innate capacity for healing and growth. 

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