Sketch: The dance of mind, hand and heart

Creating is a dance between mind, hand and heart. It does not matter what we do nor how good we’re at it. The dance is always the same. I strongly believe that the key to happier work is to learn how to let this internal dance happen in a way so that mind, hand and heart all get their turn.

Let’s dance

Let’s have a look at today’s sketch. It shows hand, mind and heart dancing together, creating a drawing. How does this dance happen in your experience?

Why don’t you take a piece of paper and try it out?


In my case the dance often starts with a solo performance of the mind, showing off with a firework of thoughts. The hand, silently waiting, observing the mind doing crazy summersaults, shaking its arms, lost in thought. To break the spell, the hand will grab the pen and jump into the middle of the dance floor. The mind wondering: “What took you so long?”

A line appears on the paper. “Hmmmm,” the mind thinks. Another line, a circle, two dots, “Ok, this is getting interesting.” Hand and mind dancing together, creating. Both happy that the drawing is slowly starting to appear on the paper.

Realising that completing the drawing will take forever, the  mind will start thinking about other things. It will access its memory, thinking about past experiences: “What will people think about me if they see this sketch? Will it be a success?”. With more and more of the mind’s conscious energy leaking into past and future, the mind will miss a step.

The rhythm broken, the hand will start to quiver, leaving random marks on the paper. The mind, feeling that something is going wrong, will focus back on the drawing and shout: “Stop! Can’t you see that you’re making a fool of yourself?”

Feeling the tension, the heart appears on the dance floor: “Sorry friends! I apologise for being late. Let’s go through this together.” Forming a close circle the heart will encourage its partners: “Don’t you like to dance? Jump around, improvise, enjoying the experience of being alive? If we want to get anything done, we need to work together. Let’s worry about the drawing later. Now, let’s dance!”

The heart, your strong guide

The dance will look different depending on the type of work you do. Proving that Earth flies around the sun will result in a different choreography, than taking care of a loved one or working in a corporate culture. The mind and the hand will bring intellect and skill to your work. The heart, the strongest of all three, will be the guide you can always trust.

Whatever work you’re doing, I encourage you to let your mind, your hand and your heart dance together. Let them support each other, try out what each has to offer, challenge them, trust in their abilities and most importantly, enjoy the ride.


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