Last month, we shared a post entitled An Unexpected Mindful Meditation: Knitting here on the Darn Good Yarn Blog. Today we are following up with part two of our Meditation and Knitting series! If you have not yet read part one, we suggest you do this prior to proceeding! Not to worry! There will be a link at the bottom of the part one post that will direct you back here.
At the end of the first part of our exploration of meditation through knitting, we talked about some of the things that you might focus on while you knit to promote a meditative experience. Today, we are going to continue this topic and fill you in on some pro tips for getting the most out of practicing mindful meditation through knitting!
We will be discussing three important tips in detail for you to keep in mind for the next time you pick up your needles and yarn with the intent of having a relaxing and meditative moment.
The first is this:
As many of you know, the primary purpose of mindful meditation is to push negative thoughts out of your mind to make room for peace and positivity. The rules of traditional meditation dictate that the subject thinks of nothing at all, and completely clears their mind.
While modern-day mindful meditation is in a similar vein, it is, in fact mindful, meaning that it involves a minimal amount of thought. While mindfully meditating, your objective is to think of the positives. This does not include just things that make you happy, but also the things you are thankful for. While knitting and taking your personal quiet time, think about the things in your life that make you grateful and allow yourself the time to feel that gratitude. This will not only improve the way you feel during your time of meditation, but it will also help you to experience a richer lifestyle of gratitude overall!
Now some of you might be looking at the heading above and saying, "I don't know my purpose! How am I supposed to remember it?" Well, the good news for you is that we aren't necessarily talking about your destiny or overall life purpose here. 'Purpose" here refers to the task that you have chosen to focus on during your time of meditation. In this case, that's your knitting project!
In order for meditation through knitting to work properly, you should be focusing most or all of your attention on your knitting. This is what helps take anxious and busy thoughts off of your mind. Focus just on your knitting. What are you making? Why did you decide to make the particular item you chose?
At this particular moment in your life, knitting your project is your purpose. All you have to think about is the next stitch. To reiterate our advice from part one of this series, enjoy the journey, not the destination!
This leads us to our next piece of advice:
Have you ever been very stressed or upset and had someone ask you to calm down? (Are all the married women and men raising their hands?) We all know that this never works! The more you think about trying to make yourself calm down, the more stressed you will feel. To use a common example, it is much like what happens when you tell a person not to think about elephants.
The key to true relaxation lies in constructive distraction from your stressors. There are few better constructive distractions than crafting and creating! This is why knitting is such a wonderful meditation method. Again, if you are filling your mind only with the thought that it takes to carry out your knitting activity, you will become effortlessly focused on the task, which takes your focus off of the things that weigh on your mind!
In other words, don't think about relaxing or meditation. Think about your knitting and you will find yourself in the calm space you are aiming to reach.
If you're giving meditation while knitting a try, tell us about your experience in the comments! We hope that these three tips have helped you get over some roadblocks in your mindful meditation journey. We would love your feedback on these tips! If you have any advice for those who are just starting out with mindfulness meditation, especially through crafting or knitting, please feel free to share!