Adult coloring books are no longer only for children. Adult coloring books are really popular right now. While experts and art therapists have been touting the relaxing advantages for over a decade, it’s childhood favorite Crayola that has gained adult coloring books some serious grown-up attention.
Last month, the famed crayon producers released a bundle of markers, colored pencils, and an adult coloring book collection called Coloring Escapes.
Though the first commercially successful adult coloring books were produced in 2012 and 2013, the once-niche hobby has now blossomed into a full-fledged fad, with everyone from researchers at Johns Hopkins University to Yoga Journal editors recommending coloring as an alternative to meditation. Here’s why you might want to open a page and exclaim “ahhhhhh.”
Art therapy, Adult Coloring Books, and Your Mental Health
According to the American Art Therapy Association, art therapy is a mental health profession that uses the process of creating artwork to “explore feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior and addictions, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem.” So, basically, it’s similar to traditional therapy.
However, it should be noted that using an adult coloring book is not the same as participating in an art therapy session. “Coloring cannot be called art therapy because art therapy is based on the client-therapist relationship,”
explains Marygrace Berberian, a registered art therapist and Clinical Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator for NYU’s Graduate Art Therapy Program. And, while art therapy was originally done in the 1940s, the first research on utilizing coloring as treatment is said to have begun in the mid-1990s, according to Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art treatment Association.
The Health Benefits of Adult Coloring Books
Despite the fact that coloring and art therapy aren’t quite the same thing, coloring does offer a host of mental benefits. “Coloring definitely has therapeutic potential to reduce anxiety, create focus or bring more mindfulness,”
Berberian said. In 2005, groundbreaking research demonstrated that respondents’ anxiety levels decreased when they colored mandalas, which are spherical frames with geometric designs inside. However, doodling had no effect on lowering the other subjects’ stress levels.we will explore the reasons why adult coloring books are beneficial to individuals of all ages.
Coloring can help with emotional healing and self-discovery. Individuals who investigate their color selections and the emotions linked with them may gain insights into their own sentiments and mental processes. Coloring’s introspective aspect can be an effective technique for personal development and emotional resiliency.
Adult coloring books allow for creative expression without the strain of beginning from scratch. Individuals can express themselves artistically by choosing colors, playing with shading, and exploring different color combinations. This creative outlet is especially good for those who do not consider themselves artists but nevertheless want to express themselves.
Adult coloring books provide elaborate and repetitive patterns that can be used to practice mindfulness meditation. This focused concentration helps deflect attention away from daily concerns, allowing people to feel relaxed. Coloring’s rhythmic action promotes relaxation by lowering cortisol levels and improving general well-being.
How To Get Started
Want to fill up some pages? Keep in mind that if you’re dealing with serious mental or emotional challenges, art therapy will be more beneficial than coloring alone. However, for individuals who simply need a hobby to help them unwind, these books could be the answer. As he states, “I truly believe that people should be engaging in activities that make them feel restored.”
According to ColoringBooks.net, grownups should forego the crayons and instead use colored pencils. Crayola also provides a comprehensive guide that demonstrates how to take your tools to the next level by blending colors, shading, and adding highlights and lowlights to your newly created masterpieces. Now start scribbling!
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