Creating mandalas reduces social anxiety in college students

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Yufang Bi
Yongfang Liu
Cite this article:  Bi, Y., & Liu, Y. (2019). Creating mandalas reduces social anxiety in college students. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 47(10), e8410.


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In 2 experiments we investigated the effectiveness of creating mandalas for reducing social anxiety in college students. In Experiment 1 we measured social anxiety in a sample of 71 college students using the Interaction Anxiety Scale, comparing a group who created a mandala with a group who engaged in free drawing. The results indicated that creating a mandala reduced social anxiety more than free drawing did. In Experiment 2 we used the Interaction Anxiety Scale and measured electrodermal activity, which is an important physiological index of anxiety, to further compare social anxiety changes between creating a mandala and drawing within a square in a sample of 75 college students. We found that creating a mandala was more effective for reducing electrodermal activity and social anxiety scores than was drawing within a square. These findings indicate that creating mandalas can be used to relieve and treat social anxiety.

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