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Poorly Drawn Penguins: How to Make Creativity a Habit

At the beginning of October all the Penguins faced a little challenge. We were tasked in our team meeting, by our incredible social media manager Erin, to draw a penguin, from memory, in 90 seconds or less.

The results were … mixed. But it turns out the activity didn’t just make us laugh, it possibly made us better at our jobs too!

Some of us are artists in our spare time and we even committed to completing an annual art challenge sometimes called Art-tober, Inktober, or … in our case, Peachtober! The idea is you draw or create one piece of art each day - based on a list of prompts - during the entire month of October. (Search them up on Instagram for a peek at all the entries at #Peachtober23.)

Drawing for Business?

But you’re not an artist, you’re a business owner who needs help with marketing. So why the hell does any of this matter to you? Well, it turns out there’s a lot of research showing that creating with our hands - and not just on a screen - can be really, really good for your business.

A recent study published in the journal The Arts in Psychotherapy shows the process of making art stimulates the reward centre of the brain - the same part which lights up when we laugh or eat chocolate.

Anne Converse Willkomm, director of graduate studies at Goodwin College, Drexel University, wrote an article about how she’s a doodler in her own life and cites a number of sources connecting doodling and creative problem solving. An amazing local businesswoman, Melissa Lloyd of Doodle Lovely created a series of journals and workbooks designed to get you doodling away stress and improving productivity, concentration, and creativity through guided mindful doodling techniques.

What did we learn during Art-tober?

The first lesson we learned from Peachtober was time management - to spend between a half hour to up to two hours a day creating something that wasn’t work related, didn’t have anything to do with household management, or socializing, was a serious challenge. To put aside a dedicated period of time was sometimes a struggle and sometimes a breeze, but making time was a powerful part of the challenge.

From there, it was a matter of learning to force yourself to think outside the box. On day one the prompt was easy. Bee. Draw a bee. Boom! Buzz! Done! But as the days went on … dream? You want me to draw the concept of dreaming? An actual dream? The daily prompt would be kicking around in our brains all day - especially in idle moments - as we tried to come up with how to represent a complex idea or concept like dreaming on paper with a pencil or paint.

Life Imitates Art

It turns out whether you work in a creative industry or a logical, linear one, spending a little time each day drawing or being creative can have a big impact on how you approach problems, how you manage your time, and how you decompress from the stresses of everyday life and business ownership. Wanna talk about how we can make creative thoughtful work together?

Get in touch, we just might be able to solve a few more of your business problems too!

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