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How to Doodle Your Way Out of Banana Thinking

Kim here . . .

I was listening to coach Matthew Ferry describe how our minds work. He said, “Listen carefully.” The he proceeded to bang three times on a wooden stool and say the word banana, while gesturing to the audience.

Bang, bang, bang (on the stool)

“Banana” (gesture to the audience)

Bang, bang, bang (on the stool)

“Banana” (gesture to the audience)

Bang, bang, bang (on the stool)

“Banana” (gesture to the audience)

Then he just did the bang, bang, bang and gestured to the audience and they said _________. (Of course, “banana.”)

The he clapped three times in the same rhythm and gestured to the audience and they said _____. (Of course, “banana.”)

This is how our minds work. If someone knocks on your door three times tonight, you’ll think “banana.” We can’t help it.

So if we hear repeatedly, “The economy is bad. The economy is bad. The economy is bad,” our minds will fixate on that. “Banana.”

This is why companies are willing to pay such amazing amounts of money for advertising. “Banana.”

It takes awareness to move us out of out trained banana minds.

William James said, “Creativity is the ability to think in unhabitual ways.” Most people do not think creatively because they responding are to conditioning. “Banana.”

Cartoonist Lynda Barry, in her book, Picture This. Learn How to Art With the Near-Sighted Monkey, advocates doodling as antidote to being disconnected from the creative flow. She says, “The worst thing I can do when I’m stuck is to start thinking (banana) and stop moving my hands.”  She says, “The trick is to stand not knowing certain things long enough for them to come to you. I have to be able to stand this somehow and wait. One way of waiting is to draw something simple over and over. Although the results may be decorative, they are more like a clock or a motion metronome that helps me not think until the story starts up again on its own.”

Just flipping through her book will shift you to a different level of awareness. Every page is overflowing with creative imagination and verve. It will make you want to draw your own chicken outline and glue cotton balls to it or paint dot pictures with q-tips and food coloring.

And if you end up drawing a picture of a banana, well, that’s okay.

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About Two Smarty Pants Creative Geniuses

We are two smarty pants, blabbermouth, seekers of wisdom out to share what we find with you. blah,blah "What I want for myself, I want for everyone." - Golden Rule Jones

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