If you've walked into a bookstore (or even a Walmart) in the past six months, you may have noticed something interesting. Many stores are now selling "adult coloring books," aimed to reduce stress and promote creativity. With thousands of designs ranging from mandalas to intricate sea creatures, how can one person pick the right book for them? And why would you want a coloring book in the first place?
Well, personally, I've always loved coloring books. I've used coloring as an emotional outlet for years, and to see its popularity rising is super exciting. The American Art Therapy Association claims that making and creating artwork is used 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." Coloring reduces anxiety and makes you more focused... and it's just a lot of fun.
If you can't decide which coloring book to buy, skim through several at the bookstore. Personally, I like the hardcover books because they last longer. But if you want to color with Sharpies, I recommend buying a book that only has drawings on one side of the page--that way, your markers won't bleed through. Most coloring pages are thick enough to use regular markers on, but I personally enjoy using colored pencils to be safe.
So, if you're interested in relieving some of your daily stress and having a good time while doing it, I highly recommend investing in an adult coloring book. You can find some of my favorites here, here, and here. Get coloring!