31 Days of Holiday Self-Care, Day 8, Spend Some Time Coloring

You’ve heard that adult coloring books are the hot new trend, right? I’ve covered it here on Midlife Rambler and, of course, the New York Times is on it. There has been some evidence that adult coloring books provide the same benefits as traditional art therapy and I’m firmly on the side of those who say it does. Picking the right colors so that the design doesn’t look like a jumbled mess and even staying inside the tiny lines of those intricate designs is challenging enough for me that it truly becomes an exercise in mindfulness.

One of the great things about coloring is that uses your entire brain. It requires one side of your brain to  focus to correctly fill in the pattern and the other side for the creativity because you pick your own colors. It can also provide insight into your current mood when you finish the drawing and look at the colors and shadings you selected. Carl Jung believed that. He created mandala paintings to express his inner self and had his patients do the same.

If you’d like to relax with a bit of coloring, but don’t want to spring for an entire book, the Internet, as always, provides. Here’s a short list of some fun places to get pages to color.

  1. Kimberly Montgomery, who created the Choices notebook I reviewed earlier, has some lovely pages on her site with a nice message of Gratitude.
  2. Free-Mandalas.net has a variety of Mandalas organized by difficulty. You don’t want your stress reducing activity to stress you out!
  3. Coloring Pages for Adults has a ton of pages to color of varying quality, but the Unclassifiable section cracked me up.
  4. If You Can Be Anything, Be Kind. A quick and easy project, that can take the sting away from all the unkind days we seems to be having in the world lately.
  5. Beautiful mandalas to color. These look so soothing. I think these might be the project for me.

So, put on some music, grab the colored pencils or markers left over from your kid’s science project days and go to town. I can’t wait to see your finished your projects! Definitely post them on the Midlife Rambler Facebook page. I’ll be posting mine!

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