Stress Knitting Got Ya Down? De-Stress Your Knitting in 5 Steps
You’ve probably seen articles recently that tout knitting as one of the best de-stress activities out there, along with adult coloring books and Zen gardens (do people still have those?). As someone who is fairly new to knitting, I call foul on these articles. They make it sound like every knitter is immediately lulled into a knitting-induced nirvana, when the truth is knitting can most definitely be stressful, especially if you are a beginner. I’m here to tell you that you are not alone if knitting has ever stressed you out, and that hope is not yet lost. Take a moment to de-stress your knitting by going through these 5 mindful steps.
1. Focus on your intent
I stole this step straight from yoga class, but it’s a great habit to get into with your knitting, too. It’s easy to let the stress and frustration of learning new things cloud your mind and make you forget why you even started in the first place. If you feel that haze start to build up, take a moment to meditate on your intentions. Think about your knitting goals, both short term and long term, then write these intentions down in a journal to remind you to take it easy and focus on the end result and overall benefits rather than the smaller stresses of your knitting.
2. Stop comparing yourself to other knitters
This is a hard one. Social media is a staple of the knitting community, so it’s easy to get stressed about your own knitting skills when comparing yourself to all the human knitting machines you see online. Don’t push yourself to be anything more than you when knitting. Remember that for knitting to be a true de-stressing tool, it needs to have a pace and style that are comfortable to you and you alone. (Also, it doesn’t hurt to stay away from Instagram for a bit, too.)
3. Move to a quiet place
There are plenty of knitters out there who are perfectly relaxed while knitting in loud public spaces. If you are anything like me, you are not this kind of knitter! Avoid the stress of mistakes that can happen when you’re distracted by quieting your knitting. Learn in environments that encourage focus. Then, once you have built up confidence and muscle memory, you can try bringing your knitting along with you to the brewery.
4. Put it down and walk away
You aren’t going to be a perfect knitter on your first, second, or maybe even hundredth try. I’ll let you in on a little secret, though: no one ever is a perfect knitter—we get better over time, but we never achieve perfection. If you’re finding that your knitting is being especially difficult at some point, it’s okay to put it down and accept that now may not be your time to get better at that particular technique. You can always try again later.
5. Ask for help
If you feel like you’re getting stuck on a part of your knitting or don’t know how to fix a mistake, reach out for help! Videos, books, blog posts, or even the experts at your LYS are all great resources to de-stress your knitting. Just remember that it’s okay to make mistakes; in fact, it’s encouraged! If you don’t make those mistakes with your knitting, you’ll never learn how to fix them.
Never let a pair of DPNs give you the cold sweats again! Keep these 5 steps in mind while you knit and you’ll be de-stressed in no time.
Happy stress-free knitting!