If you have a few quiet moments to yourself, try to remember the last time you picked up crayons to colour a fish, a hut, or perhaps a coconut tree in a colouring book? It seems like ages ago, right? Now, as an adult and a responsible parent, you do pick up colouring books, crayons, and colour pencils, but only after your child is done with his quota for the day and you are in a hurry to clean your home.
Kids are the happiest when they draw, colour, or paint; colouring activities open up a world of creativity and imagination for a child, but it benefits adults a lot more. Colouring has a therapeutic effect on adults and today, more and more adults are taking up colouring as a hobby and as an escape from the stress of their daily lives.
7 Benefits of Colouring Books for Adults
Keeping yourself busy with adult colouring books can help you immensely. Here, we will tell you how colouring activity benefits adults.
1. It relieves stress and reduces anxiety.
Colouring activities are known to lower stress and reduce anxiety. Engaging in a colouring activity helps calm the amygdala (the brain’s fear centre) and simultaneously stimulate the parts of the brain responsible for creativity and logic. Colouring also works as a form of meditation. As per a 2005 study, colouring geometric patterns or the symmetrical form of mandalas has meditative benefits and can alleviate anxiety. So, the next time you doodle – do it proudly – you’re doing it for the betterment of your mental health!
2. It exercises your brain.
As stated above, colouring activates the parts of the brain responsible for creativity and logic – it is believed to be a good exercise for the brain. When you colour, you are using both the hemispheres of your brain – this improves your fine motor skills. The logical part of your brain works on selecting the colours and patterns, while the creative part of your brain focuses on the mixing and matching of the colours. Hence, the two areas of the cerebral cortex that control your fine motor skills and vision are churned. This improves your motor skills, vision, and coordination.
3. It trains the brain to focus.
Whether you’re colouring a drawing of an elephant or a mandala, your brain knows that it has to stay (or colour) within the lines of the drawing and not go beyond them – this knowledge requires focus. When you colour within the lines of a pattern, your brain learns to train itself to focus. As per, Leslie Marshall, a licensed professional clinical counsellor, colouring opens the frontal lobe of the brain – the home of organising and problem-solving – and helps the mind focus. So, get busy colouring to stay focused in life.
4. It makes you social – a much-needed skill in this age!
Nowadays, the only place where most people are social is, unsurprisingly on social media. You may have 759 friends on Facebook and more than 500 followers on Instagram, but if someone were to ask you your neighbour’s name – a lot of you may be clueless! We know, in this day and age, the habit of asking your neighbour for sugar or tea leaves is fast declining, but if you want to get social and befriend your neighbour – try colouring together. Colouring can prove to be an effective ice-breaker. Today, many adults (not just artists!) are taking up colouring as their ‘new’ hobby, boosting the trend of adult colouring books. You can organise a colouring party, and face the fear of socialising with ease. Even if you are bad at colouring, you can still talk and make friends.
5. It helps you sleep better.
Colouring can’t be directly linked to improved sleep quality, but it does help. Swapping mobile phones with colouring books can prevent you from being a night owl.
Whenever you try to call it a night, your smartphone beeps (promptly informing you of a *new message*) – and your sleep goes for a toss. The blue light emitted by the screens of mobiles and other gadgets suppresses the production of melatonin (the hormone which regulates the sleep cycle in your body), thus, sabotaging your sleep. But, if you swap your mobile phone with colouring books, your eyes will be lesser exposed to blue light and slowly, you’ll notice an improvement in your sleeping pattern. Furthermore, the dark circles under your eyes will diminish too!
6. It lets you nurture your inner artist.
Do you reminisce about the old times when you pursued your hobby and there was just no stopping you? As time passed and life happened, somehow your hobbies got sidelined, and you forgot that there were things in life you were passionate about. How about rekindling your passion again? If colouring or painting was once your hobby, take it up again. Get a colouring book and colour the intricate designs and patterns that seemed like a labyrinth to you in your childhood. Exploring your creative skills every day will nourish them, so buy a colouring book and hone your talents.
7. It lets you create a world of your own.
When you take up colouring in adulthood, you will likely take it up as a hobby and as a stress-buster activity, not as a means to prove to someone that you are good at it. Your colouring book will belong to you and nobody will have the right to judge it – which is the best part! It will be your book and no one will judge you if you colour an elephant green or red! The world you create in the colouring book will be yours and so will be its inhabitants! While colouring, you can colour as you please; you’ll have the freedom to be who you are and do as you like it.
Why You Should Take Up Colouring?
When we say that you take up colouring, we don’t mean that you start colouring in your child’s books. To reap the maximum benefits from this activity, invest in adult colouring books. Adult colouring books come with intricate designs and patterns, they have a wide variety of themes, and their paper is of high quality. When you immerse yourself in these complex designs and patterns, you free your mind from the daily worries of your life and exercise your brain. Colouring can also replace negative thoughts with positive ones – a much-needed reprieve in today’s day and age when you’re bombarded with negativity, be it due to social media or the news or even simple causes of stress in your day-to-day life. For this, look at the shape, size, and edges of the pattern you’ve decided to colour. Pick a colour, and begin the task. When you keep your mind preoccupied with this task, your negative inner conversations of self-doubt, stress, and negative thoughts will take a back seat, and you will feel much happier and relaxed. Furthermore, as colouring lowers stress and improves mental health, it increases one’s productivity too. So, grab an adult colouring book. Life is too short to miss out on the fun!
Colouring for adults is not merely a hobby; it can be a way out from the constant worries of your life. Although it isn’t the complete remedy for stress and anxiety, it does work wonders. As a parent, you must be keen on teaching your kids colouring and other art activities, but it’s time that you take up this hobby too. Colouring can be fun and relaxing if you do it along with your kids. So, get adult colouring books and immerse yourself in all shades of happiness!