Have you ever heard of zentangling?
Coolio, that makes two of us!
Which was why when my oldest sister – I could call her C, but that wouldn’t be very distinguishing, because all my siblings’ names start with C, lol, so I’ll keep calling her ‘oldest sister’ – anyway, which was why when she gave me a book called ‘Joy of Zentangle‘ for Christmas, I was all like “huh?! Uhm, okay. Whatever. Thanks.”
I have no idea why she picked that for me. It’s not like I ever indicated I even had the faintest idea what zentangling was, much less wanted to start to zentangle. But I figure she read the “drawing your way to increased creativity, focus and well-being” part of the title and the “reduce stress and increase creativity with the relaxing art of zentangle” on the back and concluded anything that enhances focus and well-being and reduces stress can only be a good idea for me. Or something. I have no idea.
Well, so I wasn’t too impressed with the present, but then, I can usually cope with weird gifts better than those that mean something in the positive or the negative way, so it was okay. And then over the course of the afternoon and evening last night I got bored with the endless family conversations about this and that and nothing interesting at all and out of desperation thought ‘heck, zentangling looks as good a waste of time as any’ and started doing it.
And what can I say? Once I got what it is about, I discovered it’s actually pretty cool. It’s basically like doodling, but with more mindfulness. (My therapist would be so pleased.) The idea is that you have a pen and paper and then focus only on the line you’re currently drawing, making patterns, creating a little abstract picture as you go. No erasing allowed, because it’s supposed to be kind of like in life: you make a mistake, you can’t just undo it, but have to make the best of it anyway. Other than that, anything goes.
Yesterday I just doodled random bits, trying out some techniques from the book. But today when everyone annoyed me during breakfast (time the family leaves again, please, because I can clearly love them better from a distance!!!) I went to get my notebook and a pen and did my first proper zentangle. And would you believe it, I actually had an easier time ignoring everyone being annoying around me while I drew and calmed down a bit. So I suppose zentangling might actually be a good idea and decided I want to keep doing it. Right now my goal is to do a zentangle a day and watch what happens, if it helps in other situations, too, and all that. We’ll see how that goes.
So here it is. My first zentangle.