Coloring Relieves Stress
Read more about the new trend in coloring
As artists we have long recognized that drawing helps us relax and feel better.
What we have long known is now being supported by psychologists and touted as a form of active meditation.
In fact, drawing meditation is so popular that there are coloring books specifically geared for adults that come in a variety of styles. In fact more than 1/4 of the top selling coloring books on Amazon today are geared for adults!
Not convinced that coloring in the lines can be meditative? Psychologists report that the act of coloring relieves both tension and anxiety.
According to psychologist Ben Michaelis:
There is a lot history of people coloring for mental health reasons. Carl Jung used to try to get his patients to color in mandalas at the turn of the last century, as a way of getting people to focus on the subconscious to let go. Now we know it has a lot of other stress busting qualities as well.
Traditional meditation is where one sits still. Active meditations include walking and running) move your mind into a relaxed step because of the repetitive nature. Your mind is totally in the present…and that is truly what meditation is all about.
Since this is about being present and feeling good, experts suggest starting with a smile.
Start the session with a smile. Don’t skip this step just because it sounds a little silly. In fact, studies have proven that smiling even when you are not happy can raise your level of endorphins (mood enhancing chemicals) in your brain. So, start smiling!
When selecting an image to color you can use a coloring book or a printable mandala. Mandalas have long been used as part of a meditative exercise.
You can color using any media you like. Some people like pencils, but markers and yes, even crayons will also do the trick.
Hint: don’t preplan what colors you will use. Part of the coolness of this process is how your subconscious mind selects the color combinations.
Color in a quiet environment. If you play music, let the track be a calming one. Let you mind be absorbed in the process of coloring. Hear and feel what is happening as the color and paper merge.
According to the experts whether you stay in the lines or stray outside of the not only relieves tension, it helps unlock our creativity. So, if you are feeling stressed out about not knowing what to draw, go ahead and pick up those old crayons and get coloring!
Original article from Aurora University
Original article and Coloring Mandala picture from Higher Perspective
Check out these coloring resources:
Crayola’s line of coloring books