Latoya Nicole turned a frustrating moment at work into 24Shades of Business, an adult coloring book and stress-relieving tool for entrepreneurs and employees in the workplace. “It was a really busy season at work and we were all overwhelmed with the workload,” said Nicole. Some of the managers wanted to make things better for employees so they provided “stress relieving” things like free coffee, massages, and they also brought each of us coloring books to help “take the load off.” To be honest, when I first saw the coloring book I was thinking, “What am I going to do with this?” I hadn’t used a coloring book since I was a child. But one day I was frustrated to the max and I jokingly said to the guy beside me “pass me one of those colored pencils!” Once I started coloring, I noticed that I started feeling calmer.
A few years later, purpose found its way into Nicole’s life work when she decided to turn her favorite way to destress into a form of relief for others.
As a mental health professional, author, and the owner of Mint Rose Boutique, an online fashion retail store, Nicole knows first hand about the power of tapping into a childhood activity to reduce stress. “Coloring allows us to switch our brains off from other thoughts and focus and concentrate only on the moment which can help decrease stress,” Nicole said, “The time and focus that adult coloring takes can help remove the focus from the negative issues and habits and focus them in a more productive way. When we are thinking about which color to choose and when we are applying crayon or colored pencil to paper, we are also working on problem-solving, which is a quality that all entrepreneurs need. Who knew all of this was involved from the simple act of coloring and bringing a picture to life? Even now, many psychologists suggest coloring to patients as a means of relaxation, and as a calming tool. Sometimes, especially as entrepreneurs, we just need to unwind, unplug, and refocus.”
From beautiful images of women who are bloggers, doctors, and makeup artists, to teachers, and yoga instructors, the coloring book shows the multifaceted careers for women of color. Plus, it features mazes and motivational quotes. Now, it’s an Amazon bestseller and stocked in Barnes & Noble bookstores.