Adult Coloring Books: Add Color to Life
How can one add calmness and happiness to their life? Simply add color to it.
There’s been a lot of news coverage on adult coloring books, and for good reason, many are listed as Amazon’s best sellers. But, why are they so popular? And what do they entail? Are we talking about coloring nostalgic Mickey Mouse-like pictures? Not quite…
My Own Experience with Adult Coloring Books
My own curiosity led me straight to a local Barnes & Noble, where I barely had to take two steps in the doorway to encounter the popular coloring craze, as it was the very first book display to greet me.
I found a delightful and helpful sales associate who not only knew a lot about adult coloring books, but she also had a great deal of passion for them. When I asked her why she thought they were so popular, her face lit up and she said, “They are soothing, calming and allow you to just get in a zone.” She continued to genuinely rave about them and then asked me to wait a minute, while she excitedly ran to get her personal coloring book in the back of the store.
Once she returned, she opened a box of unique, colorful markers as well as a blank page in her book and asked me to try it out. Looking at her with a surprised expression, she nudged me to pick a color and start coloring. I picked up a red marker and started coloring the wings of a small owl, and instantly, I was transformed into another state…a state of calm, focused, happiness. It was like no one else was there. I looked up, smiled at her and shared in her delightful approval.
The joyful sales associate said, “They are so great! I’m going to do this until I’m 85-90 years old. It’s all I’m going to do after I’m retired.” She also shared that she currently owns 24 adult coloring books…clearly a raving fan!
Types of Adult Coloring Books
There’s a multitude of adult coloring books, varying by themes, such as cities, animals, mosaics, magical destinations and desired feelings (e.g., calm, happy, stress-free), and color guides (i.e., some include partial coloring aides while others are blank slates). Additionally, there are different types of colors, from paint-like art markers to pencils used with water to create a watercolor feel.
Benefits of Adult Coloring Books
Adult coloring books provide a fun, meditative experience, transcending one into a peaceful state of mind. But there’s even more… I recently spoke with licensed psychologist, Dr. Jamie Horton, who often uses coloring in therapy for kids and adults. She explained to me that the simple act of coloring can be the pathway to identifying feelings and linking them to experiences. For example, coloring can help people make connections to their bodies and feelings. One may indicate that the color black represents a feeling of anxiety; this color may then be used to color the mid-section of a human drawing, which may later be linked to anxiety-driven stomach issues. The mind-body connection can further lead to remedy recommendations such as relaxation exercises, etc. Thus, the coloring activity then becomes a storyteller of personal discovery and healing.
Adult coloring can be a rewarding, individual activity as well as an enjoyable social activity, similar to knitting or other craft-focused clubs. It can also be a wonderful bonding experience with grandkids.
Adult coloring is a fun and expressive way to unwind, relax, and tap into your creative “young-at-heart” side. While it’s great for anyone, it can be particularly beneficial to someone who may not be as physically active, as it is a low-impact activity that evokes positive feelings.
I highly recommend adding magical, coloring activities to anyone’s life!