By Lori Daniel Falk
Adult coloring books are all the rage! It appears not only is everyone doing it, everyone is writing about it too. Seriously, everyone from the New Yorker to Forbes Magazine to The Washington Post is writing about it. This is not just a little trend here folks. Nielsen Bookscan estimates that some 12 million adult coloring books were sold in 2015, a dramatic jump from the mere million sold the previous year.
WHY, you may be asking? (I know I was!) The message on the street is that it’s relaxing. Many liken coloring to yoga or meditation. Think of it this way, Coloring in a book doesn’t require artistic training to get started, yet it offers a great sense of accomplishment when finishing a piece. Fueling it is the fact that most of us multitask all day long. When it’s time to relax at the end of the day many of us feel guilty for sitting down and “just” watching TV. So we text, we knit, we paint our nails, we scroll through Facebook, and now apparently we color too. God forbid we’d say it’s okay to be lazy when we’re trying to relax! Most importantly of all, coloring gets us out of the digital world and into reality … you gotta admit we need more of that.
It also appears there’s a big social aspect to this coloring trend that many new fans find appealing. A recent search of the social media world found that when you put the #coloring hashtag into Instagram over a million posts come up. There are numerous Adult Coloring Facebook groups as well, some with as many as 40,000 plus members. Seems people all over the world are sharing their finished pieces of art on social media sites like Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter … and many are doing it (coloring, that is) in social settings like Coloring Clubs, meeting in both homes and coffee shops alike. Face it, coloring is a fun way to get together and do something that engages a little bit of your creative side, but allows you to talk, hang out, drink coffee … or maybe have a glass of wine, or two!
But what’s really fueling this trend? It’s this simple. Art, in and of itself, is a healing tool. The impact of the arts in the process of healing was recognized early on by Hippocrates, who understood the importance of uplifting his patients’ spirits. Over the past 15 years, there has been a dramatic growth in the use of the arts in medicine. In fact, renowned institutions such as Duke University Medical Center and Dartmouth Medical School are doing research on the subject of art as a healing tool. These recent scientific studies show us that art heals by changing both a person’s physiology and their emotional attitude. 
The question that begs asking is how? It could be as simple as one word … Epigenetics. One of the leading experts in this burgeoning field is Dr. Bruce Lipton. His research tells us that genes and DNA do not control our biology; that instead, DNA is controlled by signals from outside the cell, in the environment surrounding it, including energetic messages emanating from our positive and negative thoughts, emotions and beliefs.
According to the organization Art As A Healing Force, when a person experiences art, “The body’s physiology changes from one of stress to one of deep relaxation, from one of fear to one of creativity and inspiration. Neurophysiologists have shown that art, prayer and healing all come from the same source in the body, they all are associated with similar brain-wave patterns and mind-body changes, and they all are deeply connected in feeling and meaning. Art, prayer, and healing all take us into our inner world, the world of imagery and emotion, of visions and feelings.”
Coloring brings one into the present moment. There is nothing else that matters except the joy of this experience. It takes our cares away. It puts our fears on hold, and for that moment in time nothing else matters. Those feelings take us out of the limiting beliefs of the subconscious, into our conscious mind of pure potentiality, where anything is possible. This is the emotional state from which healing can begin.
Art as a healing tool is no little trend either. Hospitals all over the world are incorporating music and art into patient care. Doctors, nurses, and therapists are now working with artists and musicians to heal people of all ages with many conditions including cancer and AIDS. 
“Medicine can do extraordinary things today. With the arts, it can do more,” stated Jill Sonke, director of University of Florida Center for Arts in Medicine, when she spoke at a recent TEDxUF event. Put simply, “Art changes us.”  As art and healing merge, the field of art will be changed, and the field of medicine will be changed forevermore. So smile, put your feet up, pour yourself a glass of wine and color yourself into a healthier state of being.
New Thought Leader, Lori Daniel Falk is an Epigenetic Healing Artist, Author, and Spiritual Life Coach who has been gifted with an artistic healing modality that enables her to communicate with and share the wisdom of the angels, in both pictures and words. Ms. Falk has been a featured guest on both radio and TV. Her recent books, What the World Needs to Know NOW, Wisdom of the Angels, and the Angelic Rx’s for Manifesting Adult Coloring Book are available on both amazon.com and www.wisdomoftheangels.com. Her new line of greeting cards is currently being test-marketed by Blue Mountain Arts. http://geiselmed.dartmouth.edu/koop/programs/healing/value.php  http://www.artashealing.org/main/?page_id=22  http://artsinmedicine.ufhealth.org/2015/04/28/program-spotlight-tedxuf-talk-about-arts-in-medicine/