a colouring page illustrating a girl with blonde hair, emphasizes colouring as stress relief for teens, relaxation

Astonishing Benefits of Colouring (& Stress Relief For Teens)

Have you considered why finding stress relief for teens is at it’s height of importance?

When I look back to the mid nineties when I was a student (in Sydney, Australia), my mental health wasn’t at it’s best! A combination of factors led me to this point. I’d suffered from a pot of anxiety “ingredients” that had bubbled away for a half a decade, and by the time I had reached around sixteen years of age there was “trouble”-a-brewing!

Back in the 90’s (Days of Yore!)

When I was growing up, I was sent to various schools (some prestigious, some not) and the one thing that became the most influential and overwhelming factor in the prestigious ones, was the competition among students.

Everything was about traditional academics and performance. Maths and English (not so bad), chemistry “eek!” and physics set my anxiety soaring! With the type of kids found at these schools, everything was about “competition“. Friendship and genuine gifts and abilities did not seem to be as important. You had to do the subjects that were academically solid! (and you were told what they were).

With the focus being so narrow, and lacking the space to be the “creative person” I had been before high school, my mental health began to suffer. There were also a host of shaming, agressive teachers who believed that ridicule was fair game for motivating their students.

The pressure and the inability to acknowledge my true self and ANY of my own interests overwhelmed me. I just..couldn’t..cope…

Changing Schools To Escape

At the point of my thirteenth birthday my parents saw the light, so I got out of this school system and was enrolled in a rural Christian school. When I started going there I began to have a lot of fun, but of course the problem was I was always comparing what my previous school WAS LIKE.

I knew the standards of my old school, so my anxiety didn’t diminish. I just doggone kept on comparing myself to how I measured up to my previous cohort! It wasn’t too long before I thought we all were going to fail! (We all had no future! catastrophising at it’s finest).

You Can Take The Girl Out Of The School…

In my younger primary days, I had a focused outlet. I used to swim a lot and play tennis. After moving houses a few times and spending more time freaking out about heavy academics, those outlets were unavailable (tennis and swimming are hobbies of the priviledged).

With LESS physical exercise available to me, my WEIGHT shot up. More self esteem issues contributed to my shaky mental health!

With things seemingly spiralling out of control, the common sense that I needed seemed out of reach! I needed an adult or mature figure to help me with a more balanced approach in my life.

It felt at this point, that academics was the most important thing & I entered an emotional and physical downward spiral (that I will expand upon in another blog post).

a stressed out teenager and colouring pencils, represents how colouring can be stress relief

Why We Need Stress Relief for Teens!

Without getting into exactly how bad it all was right now (although I’ve given you a taste, I know), I seriously believe what would have saved me at this time, would have been a combination of

  • common sense (for pete’s sakes!)
  • cognitive therapy
  • stable, well balanced friends (although I had a few)
  • stress relieving pursuits that would help refocus the mind and dispel anxious tendencies.

I believe that with a selection of these modalities, I would have been able to restrike balance and get through with a greater semblance of mental and emotional health.

Colouring In And Stress Relief For Teens

From doing research on how to relax the brain and gain a sense of calmness, I absolutely believe that therapy including colouring is a wonderful activity to be pursued by teens. Colouring is a wonderful way to calm down the nervous system. People report that colouring gives them a sense of accomplishment, allowing a person to create something tangible, rather than just surfing the internet with no engagement.

Colouring allows you to get “lost” in the task, so that you can escape the negative, stressful and often despressing thoughts that can come upon teenagers. Our ‘feel good’ brain chemicals increase as we engage in the task. Not only do we feel a sense of accomplishment, but we can also feel so engaged in the present task, so that those things that ail us, fade away.

Both hemispheres of the brain become activated during this process, the amygdala experiences a reduction in activity, and due to this our teenagers are able to relax (hurray!!!)

That is why I believe that colouring is a great stress reliever for teens. Of course, there are other activities that could be just as easily pursued, but colouring is readily available, often by instant download and can be started straight away! Check out our shop, which is always being added to with instant colouring downloads, books and more!


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