Adult coloring craze might have started nearly four years ago but is not over yet!
Coloring is de-stressing and coloring is fun!
Coloring is an activity that we tend to associate with children, but it turns out that it can be beneficial for adults too specially for its de-stressing power!
One of the first psychologists to apply coloring as a relaxation technique was Carl G. Jung in the early 20th century. Jung believed that coloring mandalas helped patients experience many of the benefits of meditation, like inner calm and self-realization.
Today many psychologists recommend coloring as a relaxation technique, and it’s de-stressing effects are backed up by scientific studies!
Researchers have discovered that coloring activities help relax the amygdala – the section of the brain that is activated in situations where you feel stressed or scared.
Simultaneously, coloring activates the parts of the brain that support creativity!
A study published in the Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association 22(2) pp. 81-85, reveals that coloring mandalas or geometric patterns helps with stress and anxiety!
After undergoing a brief anxiety-induction, 84 undergraduate students were randomly assigned to color a mandala, to color a plaid form, or to color on a blank piece of paper.
The results of this study clearly supported the hypothesis that coloring a mandala for 20 minutes is more effective at reducing anxiety than free-form coloring for 20 minutes!
These findings suggest that structured coloring of a reasonably complex geometric pattern may induce a meditative state that benefits individuals suffering from anxiety.
Coloring elicits a relaxing mindset, similar to what you would achieve through meditation.
When you meditate, your brain enters a relaxed state by focusing on the present and blocking out the nonstop thinking we all experience. As a result, you reach a state of calm that relieves your brain from the daily stresses of life.
In simplest terms, coloring has a de-stressing effect because when you focus on a particular activity, you focus on it and not on your worries.
Focusing on the present also helps you achieve mindfulness.
The negativity is replaced with more positive thoughts when you react favorably to the pairing of colors and the creative pattern.
The act of coloring requires repetition and attention to detail, but the beauty of coloring is that you do not need to be an expert to do it!
So relax, grab a coloring pencil and enjoy!
For ten to thirty minutes or however long you choose to unwind, let the creativity and imagination take over and focus only on what is in front of you!
Whether you are by yourself or with a group of friends, coloring can help you experience a sense of relief and a break from life’s issues, what an excellent way to de-stress!