Colouring Books Aren’t Just for Kids Anymore
What were your favourite pastimes as a child? There probably aren’t too many people, male or female, who wouldn’t put colouring pretty high on the list. And while your parents may not have been too enthused to spend hours colouring alongside you, it’s a different world for today’s adults.
If you’ve been in a bookstore any time in the past few years, you’ve probably noticed the growing displays of adult colouring books — and there’s no cheap paper or distorted Disney characters here. Most are beautifully designed and bound, with black-and-white pages featuring intricate patterns, whimsical imagery, and scenes of nature. In fact, many of these colouring books are specifically designed to evoke a sense of joy or relaxation.
But why have adult colouring books, which started as a niche hobby, become so incredibly popular? For one thing, they’re in line with a larger trend toward mindfulness, marked by the rising mainstream interest in yoga and meditation. Colouring is presented as a more mindful alternative to the habits of watching TV, surfing the web, or scrolling through social media feeds. Much like yoga and meditation, it can reduce stress and anxiety and increase focus and concentration. Colouring also allows for self-expression and creativity, something most adults left behind when they entered the working world or started having children. Because colouring and creativity are usually associated with childhood, it also brings up feelings of nostalgia. And unlike high school art classes, it gives the person colouring creative control and requires no real skill. In a world in which people are perhaps more stressed out than ever, colouring is an easy way to relax and let go, if only for a little while. Why should all these benefits be reserved for children?
You can print blank colouring pages from the Internet, pick up a colouring book at your local bookstore, or order one online. Just don’t forget your coloured pencils — and a pencil sharpener.