Coloring is an activity that most of us associate with being something that children do. As we grow older, we tend to put aside coloring along with our crayons and colored pencils and trade in work papers and writing utensils with pens and highlighters. However, coloring is known to be beneficial for adults, mostly because of it’s de-stressing power.
If you look on Amazon, six of the top selling books are adult coloring books. Coloring isn’t just for little children anymore, it’s become a hobby among many adults. Not only do adults gravitate toward coloring because it’s calming, but it’s also therapeutic and works to calm the nervous system down.
Can Coloring Really Work To De-Stress?
Coloring allows a person to unlock their creative potential and is considered a low-stress activity. When a person colors, it helps to relieve tension and other pent-up anxiety because of the memories a it creates with every stroke that we take reminding us of similar times. Psychologist Antoni Martinez explains “It’s recommended to do as a relaxation technique in a quiet environment. We can use it to enter a more creative, freer state. Let the color and the lines flow.”
What Really Happens When We Color?
When we color, we activate It’s been recommended that people color in mandalas, which is a unique way that a person allows themselves to focus and their subconscious to let go. Coloring as we know it also has a lot of other stress-busting qualities.
There is a long list of people coloring for mental reasons, states Ben Micahaelis, a psychologist. When we color, we activate many different areas in our cerebral hemispheres. This action involves us to use both logic, and creativity. We use logic by deciding which picture or what we want to color, and we use creativity when we decide what colors we want to mix and match. As a person colors, the areas in their cerebral cortex are then activated (which are the same used for vision and fine motor skills). The relaxation that it provides lowers the activity where we use the most of our control when we feel emotions that is affected by stress called the amygdala.