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Let’s Color Our Lives with the Chaos of Trouble

If our lives were a coloring book, would you color in the lines?

Would you color in each section and space perfectly? Would the Cinderella cutouts be shaded in her fitting pink pastels alongside her knight in shining, silver armor?

Would every background be shaded with blue skies and white fluffy clouds and singing birds flying high above the rich, green trees?

Would the binding of the coloring book itself be held together as strong and sturdy as it was the day you first got it? Would you always keep it in a safe, neat place on top of a sturdy book shelf where no one else could get to it?


Would you tear the pre-designed pages out and replace them with your own? Would you draw your own creatures and princesses and friends and knights in shining armor? Would you draw monsters and trouble and chaos? Would you shade the pages not just with beautiful, peaceful pastels, but also with darker, more intense, and bolder colors? Would you create scenes that traverse foreign lands, that confront strangers, that evoke curiosity and wonder?  Would your characters defeat bad guys, chase after their dreams, and run head first into adventure?

Would the binding of the book itself be torn and taped back together again over and over so you could keep drawing out your story? And would you leave the book out where other people can see it, for better or for worse?

If you ask me, screwing the lines sounds a whole lot more wondrous and exciting than the fairytale version.

Color Outside The Lines.
Take a chance…


How do you color outside of the lines? Why do you do it? What are you drawing?

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About Lauren Rains

Hi my name is Lauren Rains. I write about the human experience. Through thick and thin, I’m dedicated to growth, adventure, integrity, and love. The Mad To Live is based on my pursuits, experiments, research, and lessons of challenge and triumph in all areas of life, including being entrepreneur, a writer, a philosopher, a traveler, a teacher, a student, a creative, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a significant other, a stranger and the list goes on. At the end of the day, I believe human beings are here for two reasons: 1.) to love one another with total acceptance, and 2.) to see what we’re made of as we create the possibilities for an abundant life for ourselves and for others. No more bullshit, let's just enjoy our lives.

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  • Interestingly I would color in the lines, but I might choose non-traditional colors. My husband is the tear-out-the-pages-and-re-create-the-book-the-way-he-wants kind of guy – as you can imagine, it makes our married life very interesting!

    • Hey Andi!

      hahaha that is hilarious 🙂 Hey I think choosing beautiful, interesting, and non-traditional magnificent colors is just as beautifully chaotic! We definitely all have different levels of coloring outside and within the lines. I’m sure you guys make a great couple evening each other out 🙂
      – Laur

  • Fuck yea.

    When I was little I got in trouble in class for coloring outside of the lines all the time. There was, however, a logic to my coloring. I wanted to color in the snowballs but there were no white crayons. Rather than leaving them blank I colored them Blue. Snow=water water (to a child)= Blue

    It was genius.

    I raise my glass to doing everything outside the lines. Living, working, travelling.

    • Hey Dan!

      So, any comment that starts with Fuck yea I’m automatically excited to read it! haha
      I bet if you and me were kids growing up together we would have spent a lot of time in the pricnipal’s office together. Always questioning the teachers and the rules be it 1st grade or 12th grade haha.

      Cheers Dan!!!! I will drink to that!
      – Laur

  • What about dropping paint in the middle, folding the book in half, squishing it around and then psychoanalyzing the resulting smear/smudge leading to existential questions about why we’re here, who we are, and what we’re supposed to be doing?


    • haha PAUL – you.are.awesome.
      Let’s do it! 🙂

  • ah! I love this.

    Society draws out these outlines and then praises us for how good we can color inside those lines. And so we painstakingly keep doing it.

    Nah, that’s not for me – or anybody really. I’m not going to use some predetermined paint or a #2 pencil..I’m breaking out my macaroni & cheese Crayola crayon and the thickest paint brush I can find and making a mess.

    Great stuff Lauren.


    • Hey Chris!!!
      hahah Chris you are awesome!!!! BEST metaphor ever!!! Hell yea I’m going to break out a cookies n cream caryon and the a paint rollow and join you in that mess! haha.
      Cheers to coloring outside the lines, not to mention just ignoring them all together Chris!!!
      – Laur 🙂