Do you ever find yourself feeling creative, but without the time to fulfill your artistic urges? For better or worse, New York is the city that never sleeps. Between work, relationships, and daily to-do’s, making time for creative endeavors can often feel like an impossible feat. Expanding on my last post on Mandalas, this week I want to share an easy and relaxing way to work creativity into your routine. The Huffington Post recently posted an article where they discuss the benefits of the mandalas, specifically coloring in pre-designed mandala illustrations. This seemingly simple exercise has the potential for big gains. Research shows that coloring has real health benefits! Psychologist Gloria Martínez Ayala describes these benefits to the Huffington Post, explaining that coloring involves both logic and creativity, exercising areas of the cerebral cortex responsible for vision and fine motor skills. In addition to giving your brain an excellent work-out, the relaxation provided by coloring actually lowers the activity of the amygdala, the part of the brain involved in controlling emotion that is affected by stress. Basically, the act of coloring helps us be more present, mindful, and relaxed. When coloring, we’re focused on this one activity, transported in time back to the imaginative world of childhood. Clearly coloring is not just for kids! The Huffington post article provides a sampling of mandala coloring pages from the book, Coloring Flower Mandalas. I highly recommend checking them out or searching "mandala coloring pages" for additional options. Enjoy!!