Cats. Flowers. People. Beach. Happy Faces. Sad Faces. Sometimes, lotsa’ earth colors. I try to keep it as natural as the earth. I call it mindless doodle.
Doodle is an unfocused drawing made while a person’s attention is otherwise occupied.
Doodles are simple drawings that can have concrete representational meaning or may just be abstract shapes. – Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doodle
If social acceptance would be the only consideration, doodling won’t be easy. I get stared at meetings for doodling. I’m referring to the not-so-friendly stares from people who are working with me for the first time. For those who know me, or at least, know how I work, wouldn’t budge when they see me doodling. I’d like to think that they respect how my brain operates.
I doodle during long meetings. It’s my way of keeping boredom at bay. It prevents my mind from drifting away to dreamland. Doodling sharpens my focus. This habit of doodling can be traced way back to pre-school. For some teachers, I was an annoying doodler. I remember how my pre-school teacher complained to my aunt (my guardian). Some tried to test my focus by engaging, or seemingly pressuring me into a discussion, but they conceded overtime. My class cards from preparatory to professional school could show that doodling was not bad after all.
Quite recently, I googled this behavior (Google! Doodle). There was a study on doodling published in the journal Applied Cognitive Psychology, and publicized in circulation by media outfit like Time Magazine (Feb 2009). Based on that study conducted at the University of Plymouth in England on a control group, doodlers can retain more information compared with nondoodlers. The set of information was described to have been delivered during long, boring meetings or lectures.
So what gives? Doodling uses less brain resources while giving out just enough effort to keep the brain ‘engaged’ with the subject matter at hand. It keeps one’s thought from landing at the daydreaming zone. Daydreaming uses more brain resources; thus, causing a person to become inattentive. For a non-psychology major like me, I would rather compare a doodler to a motorist who listens to good music while driving – main focus, of course, is driving, while music helps the driver stay awake or just relax, especially during a long or cross-country drive.
I don’t think I’d ever kick the habit of doodling. It’s innate, and as technology advances, so does my doodling: choice of paper or tablet. =)