7 Ways to Use Doodles for Impact
Feb 18, 2020
Ever since I started doodling in the autumn of 2016, my doodles have impacted every part of my life and business. Apart from making it more fun, it has also revolutionised the way I see the world.
In case you are not familiar with the term, a doodle is a simple visual that tells a story and gets to the heart of the matter. Whether it is just lines and shapes or figurative, black and white or colour, with or without words, a doodle will hold an energy that connects people with the essence of a message and its creator. That’s quite powerful.
Here are a few ways in which you could use doodles to help impact your life and business. I am sharing with you warts and all to show you that it is not about the perfection but about the passion:
1. Love Messages
Sharing doodle love is a great way to connect with others.
When I first started flexing my doodle muscle, I drew quick little messages from the heart that wanted to be expressed. When I shared them with others, it turned out they were the exact message they needed to hear too. I started to share doodles with my clients and loved ones to start with, until I was brave enough to take them to networking events as well.
I printed them out on my home printer and took them to local meet-ups, handing them out when there was an opportunity by asking people to pull one out of the deck. Inevitably it was always exactly what that person needed to hear in that moment. I remember having a queue at my table at one event and someone told me recently they still have their card on their desk today.
The amazing thing was, these images were so simple, so crude in design but people connected with the energy behind the doodles. It made me start to see the power of simple doodles in action as great connectors.
2. Unique Branding
Adding unique visuals to your branding is an effective way to stand out as a business.
Once I noticed the effect my doodles had on others, I decided to start integrating my doodles into my business branding, creating my logo, business cards, leaflets, website buttons, etc etc.
Doodling opened up my colour palette from red and black to red, black and yellow, to the full range. As I came alive, I went wild with colours. These days I am also learning that less is more and I have pulled it back. However, I had to go large as in the process I have found a unique identity for my business, both inside and out.
Look around my website to see how I have used them in my branding. Below were my first colourful business cards. I still love them but they are in need of updating!
3. Pimp your Presentations
Death by PowerPoint no more! Why not spice up your Powerpoints and presentation material with some added doodle power instead of predictable pictures, clipart or graphs.
Not long into my doodling career, I was asked to speak at a Wellbeing at Work conference. I remember people coming up to me afterwards and commenting on my presentation, and in particular the visuals I had created for it. Although the speech had been well received, the doodles were the star of the show. The images had allowed the audience to connect with my message on another level.
As you can see from the image below, the drawings were childlike and imperfect and I believe this is what connects us to our own childlike spirit and imperfections, ie our humanity. That is what people respond to at a heart level.
4. Flipchart Facilitation
Flipcharts are often underused, or even avoided. However, they are such a great engagement and facilitation tool.
Although I am certified as a professional trainer, I never received any training on how to use my flipchart beyond the basics, such as not use too much text and how to use the basic colours, and of course the facilitation skills. Bar some colour, they were always pretty boring as I was uncomfortable about my lack of handwriting and drawing skills.
Now I have a simple doodle toolbox to help me be more confident as I create a variety of simple visuals in realtime, or help prepare more engaging flipcharts ahead of a training or coaching session. The biggest skill I have learned is not to worry whether it is 'good enough'.
5. Storytelling & Info graphics
As a business owner, you have to learn to tell a compelling story to engage your clients and potential clients. Doodles have a universal appeal and are easily digested. A perfect way to use doodles is to create info graphics to explain and share content or to share a story.
I sometimes find myself using more words than I need to explain a point. Doodling is one way that helps me (and my clients) get to the core of a message and bring light into emotional, difficult or boring subjects.
Info graphics can be used for so many different things - to add to lessons, marketing material, website, in client meetings and sessions. The list is endless.
Once you start to create your doodle identity, ie your own unique style, you also have the opportunity to create your own unique products - whether to share as gifts or to add products to your business offerings.
I had no intention of making products until I was asked to put my doodles on a mug, bag, apron, etc etc. The opportunities are endless with lots of digital products-on-demand websites available to us. However, these days I am more discerning about what I want to create. Journals, cards, books and art are definitely part of my business going forward.
Photo credit: Mitchell Searle Photography
7. Vision and Planning
There are a number of ways in which doodling can help your business directly, such as using it to hone your vision and help you with planning.
Doodling our vision helps us sift the wheat from the chaff by organising our mind playfully. It also helps us to connect deeply to our work by engaging us at a heart level.
This was my vision for the last half of 2019. Doodling it at the time, made me super focussed and helped me to finish my second book Annie and Eva Love Devon
in record time.
Did everything happen on the list? Yes and no - everything happened but some things didn't happen in the way I imagined them to happen. This is the thing with vision - we can only see what we see from where we are standing in that moment and we must be flexible to adjust it when we start to see more clearly.
Want to find out more about doodling?
These are just seven ways in which doodles have changed my business. If you know my work, you will know that doodling also sits at the heart of my coaching work. If you are interested in finding out more, check out my courses
if you want to bring more doodle magic in to your own life and work.
And if you want to learn how to create simple visuals for greater impact, then there is good news for you. Doodle for Impact is an online group facilitated course and starts Monday evening, 24th February, 2020. Click here
for more information.
Ann The Heartworker
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