As someone with anxiety, it is often suggested to me to try coloring books. After purchasing a few, they did the exact opposite of reliving anxiety: I would spend an excessive amount of time trying to finish one page because I couldn’t leave it incomplete, the colors would look wrong and I would have a meltdown, or I simply wouldn’t know where to begin.
Recently, I tried a mobile coloring app called Recolor. Since it often calls for filling in really tiny spaces, I use my iPad mini instead of my phone to make my “art.” The app is free, but the best coloring “pages” you have to pay for or redeem with coins you can earn within the app.
With Recolor, I can go back and change the color of my work without worrying about leaving a more permanent mark as I would on pen and paper. I also don’t have to worry about accidentally coloring outside the lines (I would also have meltdowns if I was coloring on a train and was bumped, effectively ruining the picture for me) or inconsistent weight of the medium (sometimes, my pencil marks wouldn’t look perfectly solid and, again, I’d have a meltdown). Recolor is also more mobile friendly: imagine trying to carry around a coloring book, colored pencils and a pencil sharpener everywhere you went.
Although it doesn’t significantly ease my anxiety, it’s a good way to kill time on so I don’t let my looming thoughts take over. Nonetheless, I wanted to share this in case anyone else has found coloring to give them anxiety and wanted to explore similar alternative.