What Do Your Mindless Doodles Mean?

November 22, 2016

Many people, while talking on the phone or waiting to be seen by someone, grab a piece of paper and start to doodle. Without realizing, some of these doodles start to form part of a routine, and you repeat them again and again, every time you get the opportunity.

Even though these casual drawings can’t say exactly who we are, they can indicate some personality features that we express unconsciously. We prefer some shapes over others because some of them are faithful reflections of our most intimate perceptions.

“Writing consciously is the same thing as unconsciously drawing a self-portrait.”

-Max Pulver-

We must differentiate between occasional doodles and permanent doodles. Occasional doodles are made a few times and then never repeated. Permanent doodles are the favorites, the ones that you can’t resist drawing when you have paper in front of you. These are the ones that tell a little bit about you that you might not even know about.

Unconscious doodles

The shape, pressure, and arrangement of the lines that comprise these unconscious doodles can point out certain character traits, emotions, or feelings that might not have been brought to light. The principle meanings are the following:

doodle book

  • Geometric lines: This refers to simple geometric figures (triangles, squares, rectangles, etc.). If there are no embellishments or fillers, the person has probably repressed their feelings and tries to manage everything through reason. If they’re shaded, that person is in the process of questioning their beliefs. If some sections are completely white and others are completely black, this person has doubts.
  • Rigid or forcefully drawn lines: When the line is drawn with a lot of pressure, or if the person attempted to draw it perfectly, this reveals that the person is anxious, concentrates excessively on their problems, and tend to be obsessive. There could also be repressed anger or feelings of aggression that haven’t been identified. If the line almost breaks the paper, that person is overrun by violence.
  • Irregular or zigzag lines: Lines that are broken or in a zigzag reflect impulsivity. These people accumulate tension, and later they release it at an inopportune time. In general, they’re usually passionate people who give a lot of importance to emotions.

The shapes of unconscious doodles

The shapes that these doodles take can also indicate the unconscious feelings or perceptions that inspired them. A proper analysis of these drawings examines both the lines that are drawn, and the shapes they take. According to the type of drawing, these are the principal meanings:

pretty doodle

  • Arrows: Arrows generally reveal an aggressive component. By that, we mean dynamic and impulsive people who tend to take quick action. If the arrows go from left to right, they reflect aggression directed towards others. If they go from right to left, the aggression is directed towards themselves. Arrows that curve indicate people who know how to redirect their energy towards a goal.
  • Spirals: Spirals correspond to people who are really egocentric, and therefore it takes a lot of effort for them to look past anything that has to do with their own interests. Spirals that end on the left side show that they have a lot of baggage from the past that they haven’t dealt with. If they end on the right side, it shows a great fear of loneliness, which alternates with an intense need to be social so they can break away from their own confinement.
  • Stars and crosses: People who like to draw stars have a great need to be the center of attention in their social circle. But if the stars have a lot of points and are empty in the middle, this indicates depression and melancholy. Crosses indicate someone who feels a lot of guilt or a heavy weight on their shoulders.
  • People: Drawing people is a sign that the person feels defenseless against other people, or who believe that they’re not capable of fulfilling their responsibilities. This is especially true if the figures are very small. When the figures are very schematic, like stick figures, this reflects a great sense of insecurity, fear of getting close to others, and the need to shut inside oneself.
little doodles

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