Healthy Holistic Living

1 Creatively Simple Activity to Relieve Stress (And You Can Do It With The Kids!)

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I bet you’d never think to bring a pack of crayons and a coloring book to work. But this childhood act could actually be your key to stress relief at the office.

Boss working you too hard? Bust out the coloring book during your lunch break and be whisked away to a simpler time, when you didn’t even know what the word “stress” meant.

Adult Coloring Books

The trend of adult coloring books began with Johanna Basford’s “Secret Garden” with 96 pages of delicately drawn flowers, trees, leaves, and birds.


Since it was published in 2013, Basford’s book has sold 1.4 million copies.

So you needed worry about being the only adult who owns a coloring book. In fact, many working professionals and parents have openly admitted to being fans of Basford’s coloring book, claiming they’re relaxing.

“Color Me Calm”

Many publishers are creating these adult coloring books to promote the meditative aspects of coloring, promising “Easy Meditation Through Coloring.”

The art of coloring is known to generate wellness, quietness, and promote creativity. When sitting in front of the computer at work all day, many adults find the tactile activity rewarding and calming.

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“People are really excited to do something analog and creative, at a time when we’re all so overwhelmed by screens and the Internet,” Basford says. “And coloring is not as scary as a blank sheet of paper or canvas. It’s a great way to de-stress.”

Our Brain On Coloring


Coloring stimulates our brains in many different ways, as described by psychologist Gloria Martines Ayala.

“The action involves both logic, by which we color forms, and creativity, when mixing and matching colors. This incorporates the areas…involved in vision and fine motor skills. The relaxation that it provides lowers the activity of the amygdala, a basic part of our brain involved in controlling emotion that is affected by stress.”

So by focusing on a single objective, we forget our worries and find stress relief. Because of this, many psychologists are now recommending coloring as a relaxation technique.

Make It Social

Everything is more fun when friends are involved. You can turn this de-stressing activity into a social gathering, as Rebekah Jean Duthie has done in her hometown of Queensland, Australia.


Duthie has started “coloring circles” with her friends. Some adults are even taking to social media to post their works of art for family and friends to see online.

Of course, it also makes for a great afternoon relaxing with the kids!

Basford is now working on her third adult coloring book, which you’ll be able to find in stores and on Amazon soon. In the meantime, many other adult coloring books are available at your local dollar store and online.

We highly recommend using crayons for any coloring. Not for any particular reason, but because it’s more fun! And there’s absolutely no need to stay in the lines, despite what your children might tell you.


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Michelle Toole
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Michelle Toole

Michelle Toole is the founder and head editor of Healthy Holistic Living. Learn all about her life's inspiration and journey to health and wellness.
Michelle Toole
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