For my birthday this past year, my friend gifted me a coloring book. A stress-reliever, a time killer, and a book of colorful masterpiece (that I colored, not drew 😛 ), this book sits on my nightstand, reminding me of a way to destress during those hard times.
Before trying this new mindfulness practice, I passed by coloring books everywhere without giving them a try. Finally, when Journey’s Coloring Book arrived as a gift, I had to test it out: Do coloring books really destress?
Science backs it up
Different studies conducted on individuals who color have shown that these individuals may be practicing a form of meditation. According to the news, coloring does destress. From the Huffington Post to CNN, the news has reported that coloring creates a form of relaxation. It fosters mindfulness while reducing anxiety. Coloring isn’t the only artistic outlet to reduce stress, however; a CNN article noted that coloring is one of many different forms of art therapy.
Testing This Out
The first time I used the coloring book: it was the night before a big AP test (a standardized test). My teacher’s orders were not to study the night before and instead to do something that would relax me. Around eight o’ clock that night, the nerves were becoming too real, so I resorted to coloring.
The entire time I colored, I kept thinking about my test. Did I feel that the coloring somehow relaxed me? Not exactly that night. I was in a hurry to finish, since I worried that I would become too distracted coloring and forget to go to bed. It really doesn’t make sense now, but that was how stressed out I was.
Since that one night, I didn’t picking it up again until a week ago. Every night I have to do this therapy treatment called Exogen on my broken foot for 20 minutes. A little background on my situation: I’ve had a broken sesamoid (an extremely small bone) in my right foot for the past five months. During my treatment, I try to take that time to color.
From coloring so far, I can see how it involves mindfulness. Often, in the middle of coloring, I realize I’m either deep in thought or thinking about nothing. Since I really like listening to music, I normally put on my headphones during the activity. It has made those twenty minutes just float by.
How to Start
There’s no need to buy an entire coloring book to start. Pinterest has free, printable coloring sheets. But if you’re ready to color away, ColoringBooks.com has a huge selection of adult coloring books.
The book that I use is called Journeys: Coloring by Numbers by Camille de Montmorillon (see picture above). I use some old coloring pencils also once given to me as a gift, haha! My coloring book is specific for anti-stress but there are a lot online that are tailored to different themes.
Important tip (!): ColoringBooks.com says that the best types of coloring tool to use are colored pencils because they deliver precise lining, as opposed to crayons that can be less neater.
I hope you all enjoyed this post! Maybe you all will be inspired to start coloring away 😉 Be sure to stay cool during this heat (or stay warm if it’s chilly wherever you’re at). Have a great day and talk soon!