Be a Kid Again: Color Your Stress Away


BY SHANNON MOLTER

Children may need to start hiding their crayons from their parents. More and more adults are picking up coloring in their free time, but they aren’t coloring in your average coloring book – they are coloring in books made specifically for adults.

Adult coloring books are a new phenomenon, filling best-seller lists across the world. Most feature intricate drawings or geometric shapes, which when colored can cause a relaxing effect for the artist.

Laurel End, Ph.D., chair of the psychology department at Mount Mary University, has purchased an adult coloring book, and believes it is a great tool for busy adults to de-stress.

“From a therapeutic perspective, it is a meditative technique by taking the artist’s focus away from their troubles,” End said. “It is also a great way to get people to detach from technology.”

Ellie Rose, a 2007 graduate from the Mount Mary fine art program, is now the CEO of GeroStart Inc., a company that hires art therapists to work with older adults with cognitive disabilities. Rose believes adult coloring books can be a resource for a form of art therapy, but they are not the only option for people.

“Adult coloring books are a great tool to get us to a place of creativity, but they aren’t a cure,” Rose said.

Rose said a student may find some benefits by coloring in an adult coloring book.

“Coloring could be nothing but helpful for a stressed student,” Rose said. “After completing a coloring book a student could find a sense of accomplishment, which would help set them up to succeed.”

You can even find an adult coloring book in Mount Mary’s Barnes and Noble bookstore. “The Mindfulness Coloring Book” by Emma Farrarons is less than $10, and contains “anti-stress art therapy for busy people.”

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