Coloring isn’t only for kids. In the past several years, adults have gone wild for coloring books, too. Whether it’s to jump start the morning over a cup of coffee or to wind down over a glass of wine at night, the over-18 crowd is armed with colored pencils, gel pens, markers — any tool that will get the job done.
What’s the job you ask? The adult coloring trend blossomed as a way to relieve stress. It’s not necessarily about going back to your childhood but instead is about finding a way to forget about the world for a little while and create.
The benefits go beyond stress relief as well. It is said that coloring calms the brain, bringing you into a meditative state that can work wonders on the human body. It can enhance an individual’s ability to focus by opening up the frontal lobe, an area of the brain responsible for organization and problem solving. In turn, focusing on coloring inside the lines on each intricate area of a page can improve motor skills and stimulate the brain, which is especially therapeutic for dementia patients.
Coloring can also help you sleep better at night, and it’s not just because you’re more calm and stress-free. When you adopt coloring as a bedtime habit instead of watching TV, working on a laptop or scrolling through social media on your phone, you’re avoiding exposure to light that could interrupt your sleep patterns. The artificial blue light emitted by electronic devices suppresses the release of melatonin and delays your body’s internal clock.
While coloring is often an individual activity, some choose to go to meet-ups where they can color together in a group setting. The Orange County Library System hosts adult coloring events from time to time. They are meant for people ages 18 and up.
A Creative Coloring for Adults event is currently scheduled for one Monday a month through the end of the year at the library’s Hiawassee branch. All supplies will be provided, but guests are welcome to bring their own favorite colored pencils or markers. Check the OCLS website for more details and a full schedule.