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Crochet as Meditation

July 24th, 2013

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Blogger and author Kathryn Vercillo shares tips on meditating through crochet.

Crochet as MeditationI remember the first time that I tried formal meditation. I sat amidst a group of compassionate people with closed eyes who were letting go of all thoughts, focusing attention on their breath. I felt no compassion for myself as my monkey mind skittered about. I felt self-conscious about my constant twitching and resituating, certain I was irritating the peaceful beings around me. More than that, I simply didn’t enjoy the experience. My anxious mind raced into terrifyingly uncomfortable places. I left feeling that meditation is a great thing…for other people but not for me! Then I found crochet.

Crochet offers a chance to meditate in a way that many people find easier than sitting still in a room and focusing on the breath. Crochet is a relaxing, repetitive craft that can be done as a means to mindfulness. The combination of constant counting, gentle recurrent hand motions and focus on the work is a stress-reducer and a path to being present in the here-and-now.

Want to practice crochet as a form of meditation? Here are some tips:

  • Choose a project that requires only beginner skills, like a large granny square or a scarf made of only single crochet stitches.
  • Select a project that offers comfort in counting. For example, a scarf will let you count the same number of stitches again and again in each row.
  • Use a yarn color that feels comforting.
  • Work in a quiet, relaxed space.
  • Set an intention. At the beginning and end of the crochet project remind yourself what it is you want to achieve with meditative crochet. Celebrate the craft and celebrate yourself.

There is certainly something valuable to be found in formal meditation. However, it doesn’t work for all of us. In particular, people with mental health conditions including depression and anxiety may find it too difficult to simply sit on the cushion and watch the breath. We can use mindfulness crochet instead to bring ourselves back to the present moment, practicing compassion for ourselves and for others with each stitch.

What has been your meditation experience? How does crochet help?

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  • Jan Watson

    I crochet and knit prayer shawls. The repetitive simple stitches combined with intercessory prayer is calming and centering and in the end you have a beautiful useful gift to give to someone in need of prayer and a warm reminder of the prayers offered on their behalf.

    • CrochetBlogger

      I’m so glad that you and some others here are mentioning prayer shawls. I think that creating a project for someone else while practicing a specific prayer or intention is a terrific way to infuse that piece with a kind of love that the recipient will feel whenever they use the shawl! And yes, it is definitely a calming and centering practice!!

      • Jean

        I totally love crocheting and do the same. I begin a piece and start praying for who I should give it to and then continue to pray for the person as I complete the project. There are days after a difficult day at work that all I want to do is go home and sit in my chair by the window and crochet and pray!

        • CrochetBlogger

          Isn’t it terrific to have something comforting like that to turn to on those rough days!

      • Guest

        I just like to crochet, especially in the long winters where I live; so I have a number of great give-aways: The cancer centers always accept hats and our local hospital accepts shawls and both places will take afghans. These become gifts for people going through some of the most difficult days of their lives–I know because when we were in cancer treatment we received a quilt from a local quilting club. Cancer patients are often very cold and these gifts are really appreciated!

    • Tonda Stewart

      I know this may sound dumb but is there a prayer that goes with making prayer shawls?

      • grannym

        My experience was to pray in the name of the Father, Son & Holy Spirit. I prayed for peace, comfort, love. The shawl was for a friend sitting with her terminally ill husband at the hospital. They had traveled from Florida to Mayo’s in Minnesota. I know she did not have winter clothes with her, and thought a shawl was appropriate. As it turned out, I finished the shawl the very day her husband died. I included a note with it, and she later told me that she still kept it thrown across her bed, as a reminder of him, and the love she felt from me at her time of loss.

        • Alison

          How utterly beautiful, reading your post brought a lump to my throat and tears to my eyes. Whilst I was knitting a hat for the homeless I knitted my prayers into it. I prayed for them to feel love and kindness from it and that a path forward out of their situation would become clear and they’ll take it, moving into a more positive place. I’d occasionally close my eyes sending these prayers and thoughts deep into the hat.

      • Janet from a crochet planet.

        Hello Tonda: There is a formal book out called Prayer Shawls. In this book they have a couple of sample of prayers. Also if your pattern is in a multiple of 3 stitches people often chant Father, Son and Holy Spirit and I choose Grandmother, mother, daughter or you could add the names of your faith leaders in it as well. Good luck.

        • Mary Lee Burton

          There is a knitting stitch called ‘Trinity’ (three stitches in one and then one in three). It took a bit of getting used to ( as, for me, does any new stitch) for my fingers to memorize the sequence; counting, yes, but not demanding sequences. I could imagine some dear soul, maybe on the back pew of a church, holding her knitting and inwardly reciting, almost like a mantra, the Holy Trinity, or the Catholic Rosary (unless the preacher/priest were especially good); or sitting, working with the background thought of someone in need. There were times when I felt almost transported, as a good Yoga session takes one out of oneself and into a realm of calm and quiet. Of course,
          crochet can do it, too, many times in an even easier, more comfortable way…

        • Faustina’s friend

          there is a wonderful book entitled: “knitting into the mystery”….you can find it in any book store………also…….check out the web site……this is where I learned all about this most terrific plan to invite the crafters and minister to people who can benefit from the prayer shawls, lap robes…because I found that there were folks that did not fit into the prayer shawl need….we began prayer squares.. also…these have gone out to many many….locally and across the country…and they are little and able to be in someone’s pocket book, pocket, etc.,and be reminded that God loves them…..what a blessing….don’t you think it could even be called “a calling”…..and you know, so many folks who have received these gifts can actually feel the prayers….[their words]////
          Blessings….invite some frieds together….we pray during the month when we are making these gifts, then monthly when the completed gifts all come together….before they go on their way to men,women,children,etc.,

      • CrochetBlogger

        I don’t think it sounds dumb at all; it’s a great question!!

      • Karianne

        Yes, at one time about 6 years ago, I know there was a book of prayers to go along with the shawls. Check on Amazon. Maybe they will have it.

      • Cottontop

        The prayer shawl ministry in our church adds a prayer to each shawl being given out. I also have a book of patterns that includes prayers for many occasions I would be happy to share some if you would like.

      • Mariamarta Lee

        only the one you make. That’s why prayer shawls are fun.

  • mjtulips

    I have found the crocheting during a sermon at church is a helpful way to keep my mind focused. I day dream much less now. The baby blankets I made will be donated to the church to give as needed.

    • CrochetBlogger

      Great point that crocheting during a sermon helps you stay focused. I have had discussions with people before about whether or not it’s appropriate to crochet in church. People who don’t understand it may find it rude but in actuality it’s a great way to keep the hands busy in order to relax the mind and actually be more present for the service.

      • Lllamamom

        In years past, such as Colonial times, knitting or crocheting in church was considered positively, as “idle hands are the devil’s workshop”. During the World Wars, knitting and crocheting in church supplied the troops. It’s only in recent times that just sitting came to be accepted. I knit or crochet everywhere, and explain that it helps me listen. When I can repeat everything in the conversation, critics usually calm.

        • CrochetBlogger

          Thanks so much for sharing that history!

        • Mary Le Burton

          Absolutely, needlework crafting offers all sorts of good things. For many years, patients in therapy, struggling with emotional dis-orders were encouraged to ‘make something’. Regular session times were set up for such therapy. Psychiatric nursing friends reported good results. And, how many of us older people remember dear relatives who simply could not sit with idle hands. Those people, even while at rest/sitting , continued to serve their families and households; and, oh, the lovely things they produced. I’m lucky enough to have some of their handiwork and still feel their productive and loving presence in every stitch…

      • Guest

        I just can’t imagine what Father would think if he noticed someone crocheting during the homily! LOL! Maybe I’ll find out!

        • marrinb123

          One of our priests found it distracting when someone was crocheting in church, but was soon calmed with the discovery that this was going to our homeless ministry. A homeless man or woman received many such gifts over the years and Father hasn’t had a word to say since.

    • crochetsquare

      I belong to the prayer shawl ministry at my church & our pastor has SPECIFICALLY given us permission to crochet (and/or knit) during worship.


      My wife and I regularly knit or crochet in church. Not only does it help us to focus, but it makes visitors more comfortable on their first visit. A common comment is ” A church that allows people to knit /crochet during the service will accept anybody to join them” Some are even surprised to see a man doing it…

      • Jeni

        We have several men in our church who knit during the service. Many of us in the Prayer Shawl Ministry do that. Hats off to you, good sir!

      • Elizabeth Gruenbaum

        I do crochet in church on occasion. When I do get the opportunity, I sit toward the back to avoid distracting others.

  • Linda Higgs Whitehead

    I also crochet and pray while making prayer shawls for our church program. For the past year, crocheting and praying have gone hand in hand while making other items as well, and have help me in dealing with some health issues connected to stress. An hour of crocheting before bedtime has now become the best way for me to clear my mind so I can sleep better at night.

    • CrochetBlogger

      Yes! I have struggled with insomnia my whole life and am super fascinated by the research I’ve found about how calming activities including crochet can help with sleep. As an addition to that thought, a lot of times insomnia is associated with stress so if you crochet throughout the day as a stress reliever then you may reduce problems with sleeping at night.

      • Pinkcaddy7

        LOL, you can bet it’s better than a lullaby or bedtime story and surely better than a tv program. I have fallen asleep with the hook in my hand and yarn wrapped around my index finger ! ! ! I also pray over my projects.

        • crochetsquare

          I’ve also done the same – MANY times!

  • Ginny T.

    Very interesting. I especially like the idea of crocheting for an hour at night to calm the mind.

    • CrochetBlogger

      What a luxury, too, to treat yourself to that hour of me-time for crochet each day!!

  • Pam Smith-Graham

    I used to crochet when taking classes all the time. It allowed me to focus better. I’d put it down when taking notes. Always checked with teachers first so they wouldn’t be insulted.

    • CrochetBlogger

      Similar to what mjtulips said above I definitely think that crocheting helps you focus better so that you can actually be more present in various situations. I think this can be true for a lot of people but is especially true if you are someone who deals with a condition like anxiety where your mind can get the best of you if you’re not on top of it! I do think that asking teachers first (or lecturers or whoever it is) is a nice courtesy because it helps them understand that you’re doing this to be more present, not less present!

    • anita

      I do the same thing in meetings. I think I hear better when my hands are occupied. I have yet to have a presider object.

  • mimi

    I’ve thought this for a long time. Through either knitting or crocheting it’s possible to get in to a peaceful zone. So relaxing and at the same time you feel your time well spent in what you’re creating.

    • CrochetBlogger

      Yes, great point here (and from Robin below as well) that crafting is a great avenue towards relaxation that ALSO helps you feel productive! This is something that I’ve heard a lot of people talk about in reference to how they crochet through chronic illness … there’s sometimes not a lot they can do to feel useful because they are ill and this really leads to depression and low self-esteem but then they find that they can do their crochet or other crafting and this helps rebuild that self-esteem.

  • Robin

    I so understand this! I have depression and when I try to sit to mediate I feel like I’m being lazy. But when I sit and knit I know I’m making something so I feel productive. I’ve made prayer shawls and that makes me happy knowing its going to a good use. Thank you for this article. It means a lot to those of use with mental Heath issues thank you

    • CrochetBlogger

      I’m glad you mentioned the point about laziness because I forgot to include that point in the main article and it’s definitely something that a lot of people, especially with depression, will understand. Many times we feel unproductive if we are just sitting there, which can cause us further stress and an inability to calm down and “do nothing” but if we’re crafting then we feel productive and it facilitates the relaxation. Terrific point!

      • Jennifer

        I use crafts as my form of medication for depression. It allows me to relax and keep my mind focused on something other than the issues going on in my head. Glad to hear that this isn’t the case for only myself.

        • CrochetBlogger

          Before I started doing the research for Crochet Saved My Life I wondered if I was the only one who crocheted to get through depression. Once I started talking about it I found out that there are many, many, many of us!!

          • Jennifer Bowling

            After having the first surrogate baby 7 years ago and the 2nd two years ago, I had post partum depression on top of my clinical depression. I didn’t know what to expect afterwards and really couldn’t do anything but cry for months. It was a little comfort to knit something, anything. I did so many dishcloths that I ran out of people to give them to. I did so many scarves that my holiday gift list was seriously reduced. Socks were flying off the needles… I still have clinical depression and have thought of teaching knitting or crochet as therapy because it helps me and sometimes I zone out so well that my daughter has to come over and touch my arm for me to realize that she said something to me :) I am also a Veteran and I believe that this could help with PTSD symptoms as well.

          • Katnip

            .I am also a Veteran with PTSD and depression and have found that knitting and crochet help me to relax and help to ease my symptoms. Keeping my hands busy and my eyes on my work certainly helps to avoid stressors such as traffic when riding.

    • Pinkcaddy7

      God bless you. I always feel like I have to “be doing something” — almost to the point of thinking I’m hyper or something is wrong with me. I retired a month ago and I’m very energetic but sometimes I daydream of just going outside and sitting in the shade and do NOTHING — but I can’t. So, I take a simple pattern with me and you’d be surprised at the “sounds of nature” you can hear out there that you might otherwise overlook and miss totally.

  • Tanna Dawn

    Been crocheting since I was 17yrs old, self-taught. Started with basic squares and rectangles and in 6yrs gradutated to everything under the sun, unique patterns, creating my own…20yrs later it is still the best way to relax and gives such a sense of accomplishment when you create something beautiful and unique to gift to someone!~!!

    • CrochetBlogger

      Another terrific point … there is a positive feeling not only during the meditative and creative process of actually making the item but then again when you are able to gift it to someone. It’s a gift that you give to yourself and to someone else at the same time!!

  • Kate

    My Fiance is a recovering drug addict. Knitting and crocheting have helped me clear my mind and find temporary peace through his active addiction as well as center myself on me and work through aspects of my own recovery. Of course lace projects aren’t overly suited!

    • CrochetBlogger

      Thanks so much for sharing this little bit of your story Kate. Crochet is actually used a lot in treating various kinds of addiction including substance abuse issues. (It helps keep the hands busy, provides a positive distraction, helps build self-esteem and provide a sense of accomplishment and even facilitates group therapy in substance abuse centers). But we don’t hear nearly as many people talk about being in a relationship with someone who has those issues (and the co-dependency feeling that can come along with that even if you are mentally healthy yourself) … crochet can definitely be an amazing tool for re-centering yourself, re-focusing on yourself and staying calm in the midst of someone else’s storm.

  • Memories Yarn Cafe’

    I just shared your blog on meditation with my customers on my facebook page, and I added one more tip and that is to pray for someone else while crocheting or knitting as a way to clear your mind of your own problems.

    • CrochetBlogger

      Thanks! I’ll make sure to pop over and take a look. I think you’ve made a great point about taking your mind off of your own problems through crafting and prayer for others!!!

  • Quinn

    I love this! I like to pick a nice repetitive pattern on stressful days. I get into a rhythm for each stitch, counting the motions rather than the stitches–no worrying about losing count then. It is very relaxing. Sometimes if I am having trouble sleeping at night, I will picture myself crocheting as a way to force racing thoughts out of my head.

    In general, though, I find crocheting helps me focus on other things more, as long as I don’t have to look up from my project. It takes just enough of my attention to keep me from wandering away from the point.

    • CrochetBlogger

      What I love about what you’ve said here is that it really highlights how the same person can use corhcet in different ways for various benefits … to get more relaxed, to help with insomnia, to increase focused attention … It’s amazing, isn’t it?! I think the more tuned in we are to ourselves and what we need, the more we can figure out how to use crafting to help us meet those needs!

  • Pat Senich

    I crochet for many years ago a nd a few years ago I worked
    a graveyard shift …so we (another lady taught) decided to make ear covers to fit the headsets that we wore ..and had to share for work…girls loved them and must have sold a hundred pairs! Had to quit as our boss got in trouble from a higher up!

    • CrochetBlogger

      It’s too bad that the boss’s bosses didn’t understand that there were actually some great positive benfeits for you as workers doing the crochet together. I’m sure you not only relaxed but also fostered a positive bond between all of you that was actually conducive to a more pleasant work environment!

  • Linda Roberts Kennedy

    You have hit on the reason that crochet works for me in controlling panic. i never would have thought of putting the term “meditation” on it, but that is what I tend to do. It’s also the reason i always choose basic patterns that require little concentration.
    Love the way it reduces stress calms my mind. Wonderful!!

    • CrochetBlogger

      Absolutely! Crochet is a terrific tool for dealing with anxiety including panic attacks. It’s even been known to help reduce the symptoms of asthma attacks when the cause is related to panic. I think it does help to think of it in terms of a form of meditation … not only is it useful for us but I’ve found that explaining it this way to others helps people have a little bit more respect for our need to take that time out to crochet. Very few people would say “what a waste of time to meditate” but might say “what a silly hobby to crochet …” so framing it in this new way helps people respect it more.

  • Bernice Campbell Woodson

    When I crochet, I consider every stitch a prayer for the recipient, including myself. I crochet at work. It helps me focus on my job and relaxes me. (Actually, I’ll crochet almost anywhere!)

    • CrochetBlogger

      I think it’s great that you’ll crochet in all different kinds of places! It can help us individually in so many different settings and seeing you do it might inspire others to try it as well!

  • Noel Kirk

    I really like this article. I’ve been unemployed and because of that I’ve been rather down, so I’ve been crocheting to get my mind clear and stay calm. It’s allowed me to make items and I can sell them to help make ends meet.

    • CrochetBlogger

      I am so sorry to hear that you’re dealing with unemployment but so glad to hear that you are finding crochet to be a positive way to deal with the situation. I totally understand. I’ve had a surprising number of people share their story with me that is very similar. In fact, you might be inspired to read the story of Em in my book Crochet Saved My Life. (Don’t mean to give a shameless plug there – you can get the gist of her story from a page on the site: Basically, Em was in her 50s and dealing with unemployment and really fell into a deep depression as more and more time went on without her getting a job … but she used crochet to help her out of the depression and ultimately to make a modest income through her Etsy store. True story.

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  • Frances Trejo

    I like the idea of crochet/ knitting as mediation. I have also tried meditation. I find guided meditation or walking meditation more effective for me. I need & crave motion. No wonder I fell- in-love w both knitting & crocheting.

    Since, I was little I’ve been the kind of person who would do something & then move on to the next thing, hardly slowing down until my head hit the pillow. That is very taxing on a body after 40 years. Now, I use it as a way of making myself sit down & rest w/o feeling like I am wasting time. Sitting down for a while & then (eventually) having a finished product is just so satisfying. Not to mention, when I finally get something resembling the sample picture! Woo-hoo. I can rest, relax & satisfy my sense of accomplishment. As a SHM it’s sometimes hard to feel accomplished when your home duties are never really “done.”

    Crochet & knitting as meditation sounds great, however, I like having the TV on or sometimes I listen to books on my Kindle or my favorite podcasts while I work w yarn. It really depends on what I have going on w my projects. If it’s too complicated then it’s just music or the kind of thing I work on at Starbucks. I actually end up doing the finishing of many projects while waiting at doctor’s offices. Then I don’t have to carry lots of stuff, just hide those ends.

    Maybe by the time my crochet or knitting gets to be the kinda thing I can w/o looking, maybe I can turn into a mediation.

    • marilyn

      I can really relate to your 2nd paragraph. Only after 55 years I found crocheting and every year thereafter, I enjoy so much when I have crocheting and/or knitting to help me “sit down and rest.” When I was younger I just used to go, go, go. But now I have to give in sooner to a rest. I love this whole article. I was never able to sit and meditate either. But I can sit and I just love these crafts and I am so proud of the finished products.

      I remember my grandmother used to crochet, but I never thought to ask her to teach me. So now when I crochet I feel as though she’s with me smiling that after all these years we share this pleasure.

  • Cheryl

    Not just crochet. I am recovering from a traumatic brain injury. Part of my rehab at the beginning was to knit simply so that I would sit still and allow my brain to heal. While I am left with a multitude of permanent injuries, the one constant is my knitting. I knit for women undergoing chemo…a minimum of one hour per day…prayer shawls, afghans, chemo caps. My friends and family all have new scarves and hats. I know that I have improved tremendously with this activity and I KNOW that to give it up now will set me back…significantly. My motto is that every stitch includes an ounce of love. Wrap yourself into your gift and enjoy. It helped me and it will help you!

    • Northof60

      I am beginning to be able to knit again after a concussion and find that it is a way of celebrating progress in my recovery. It’s up and down, but also helps to calm the frustration of the brain fog.

    • Carolyn

      I really like that…every stitch includes an ounce of love!

    • Kit Donner

      I learned to knit while recovering from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and found it very helpful during my recovery as well. What surprised me was that when I casually mentioned this to my physical therapist, he mentioned that knitting is a traditional form of therapy for TBI, because the repetitive motion helps the brain form new connections to replace the ones that were disrupted during the injury, or at least that is one theory. In any case, knitting and crochet are officially recognized as therapeutic for many aspects of TBI, beyond just being something that enables me to sit and be calm better than I could without knitting. I have always been somewhat hyperactive, except when I have something like knitting that helps me stay calm.

  • Faustina’s friend

    I am a member of a payer shawl ministry in my church…group is 5 years old. We pray for the person who will receie the item, be it knitted or crocheted…a prayer of our choice that asks God to be present to the receiver of the gift and for them to experience peace, healing or whatever they need…many are given to parishioners or to whom someone requests…At our monthly meeting, we all say a prayer over each gift before it goes on it’s way…we ake prayer shawls, prayer laprobes, prayer baby blankets, prayer squares….which also are given to local hospital and other places of need. We believe that God answers prayers and prayer touches all….We are humbled by the responses we receive….love is the answer….God loves us and we do in our simple way a sign of that love to others….an ironed on label is attached to each gift as a reminder of prayer coming to them….we are all blesed. thank you for letting me share with you this most rewardin ministry.

  • Carla Rae Andrusiak

    I have a large granny square project at my desk at work that I work on at lunch. It helps me to de-stress from the morning and become refreshed for the afternoon. I also crochet to help lose weight as it keeps my head and hands busy when I’m watching TV – therefore i don’t eat out of boredom.

  • Jackie Harvey

    I saw this blog and thought wow I can relate!! Crocheting has been an escape for me. When loved ones or someone special has passed away in my life, I crochet alot. I am ADHD and it does help center my mind, while I figure out problems. When I get angry or am hurt I crochet alot. What I really enjoy is crocheting as we wait for a new ne to come into this world. It really keeps me from going crazy! I crochet almost everywhere. I have not taken it to church yet not sure how that would be received. It does go everywhere else with me. Crocheting helps!!

  • MByarncrafter

    I am among a growing group of women who crochet (and knit) in our church during services. It occupies a part of my mind and allows the rest of me to relax. I have one favorite blanket ‘recipe’ from the Linus Project that repeats the same 3 stiches. I also do the same at live music concerts. I imagine all the music and good thoughts being captured by the yarn to become part of the blanket.

    • Pinkcaddy7

      Hi, I’d LOVE to have that 3-stitch repeat recipe ! ! ! I have thought “What would they think if I crocheted during the sermon?” and haven’t done it yet. Perhaps I’ll take a seat in the back and try it out. I just hope some wandering 3 year old doesn’t walk up to me and say loudly, “What are ya’ doin’?” LOL…

  • Elayne Greatruaha

    So agree with the idea of crochet as meditation, the chance of creating something that is so satisfying, choosing the colours that sit just right, sometime my mind just flies away with amazing thoughts. Always been a big fan of crochet, but recently much more so. I suppose since I read Crochet Saved my Life!!!


  • Knitting Nana

    Knitting can also be very helpful as you want to meditate.

  • Sara

    Crochet is definitely my therapy. There are times when the ‘mojo’ is gone but I love it when it returns. I find colors help in the healing process. There are some colors that will bring harsh energy and others that will bring light energy.

    If you use crochet as mediation then choosing colors that make your spirit sing will help you take advantage of the healing aspects of repetitive action aka counting stitches.

  • n manriquez

    Totalmente de acuerdo, a mi me pasa lo mismo, no logro relajarme y sentirme comoda con la meditacion, no asi cuando comienzo un proyecto logro abstraerme y dsifrutar la experiencia

  • Heather Brown

    I started graduate school recently and the constant struggle between needing to read and wanting to crochet has grown into a full scale battle. In an attempt to quell this battle I decided one day to alternate…I read for a chapter and then crocheted for a awhile…then read…then crocheted. It started as a way to balance work and play, but I found that I retained more of what I was reading because I was giving my mind the space to really digest it and then come to a peaceful state before I started attempting to cram more knowlege into it.

  • Diane Threat

    I love your description “my monkey brain” – can I borrow it?? I go in so many different directions sometime my left brain much more active than my right brain – that the monkey bars were my favorite recess place and the slide! Sewing is my favorite “hobby” – but anything with materials, yarns, cloth smoothness, weaves and the variety of textures can settle me down. I have not really been into meditation, as such, but I do know, getting a good hook and yarn together can be no greater joy and relaxation of the mind. Now, to put this into practice more often!


  • peggy

    I love to crochet, it is relaxing and not only do I get to meditate I also help myself from rading the refrigerator. I have depression, OCD, anxiety, and I find it rewarding to crochet especially when I conquer a new difficult pattern. It helps the self-esteem like no one knows.

  • Jennifer

    Funny! I literally had a conversation last night with some people about how I found crocheting or knitting to be my form of meditation. The slow movements, counting and thought put into each item was much like meditation for me and you have something to show for it when you’re done!

  • Denise McNeil

    I always tell people that crocheting is my stress reliever. The more stressed I am, the more projects I complete! I was getting my car serviced and it took 4 hours. Fortunately, I had enough yarn to complete an entire poncho.

  • Melissa

    I am 25 weeks pregnant with my first baby. I crochet all sorts of little things for her and use crochet as a way to relax and connect with her. Feeling her movements and concentrating on the pattern, it’s so simple but very rewarding. Every stitch brings me closer to her and relaxes me in the most peaceful ways. I look forward to passing on such a rewarding skill.

  • Catherine

    Great comments and I agree with them

  • Crazy crochet

    I love crocheting. I like doing simple stitches when watching TV and complicated ones to keep my mind busy. I HATE meditation and prayer. It makes me want to leap out and choke the instructor saying “clear your mind”. Thank you for putting your thoughts out there.

  • hj

    I definitely have found crochet meditative…more so than knitting although I love to knit. When I am worried, anxious, angry or sad, I can turn to crochet for comfort.

  • sjcargile

    I couldn’t agree more! Though I’ve never been to a formal meditation session, I know that I would be the disrupting person in the room, too. I love crocheting (and cross-stitching) and have always thought it was very relaxing. I am currently crocheting a blanket for my husband. I’m not sure if it’s the softness of the yarn, the rhythmic motion, the coziness of the blanket as it gets larger or a combination of all three, but I get so relaxed while I’m working on it that, sometimes, I start to fall asleep! :)

    • Kit Donner

      Sometimes I actually do fall asleep while knitting. I used to worry that I would drop stitches if I fell asleep, but oddly enough I rarely do drop stitches, and even when I do drop a few stitches I can usually pick them up again smoothly and correctly and just continue with my knitting. I am not yet good enough at crocheting to be able to risk falling asleep while doing it, because I cannot read my work well enough to know how to keep going when I wake up. But I will get there eventually. Hopefully it will be even less likely to drop stitches if I fall asleep while crocheting. I tend to be calm and relax if I go to sleep while knitting, so I do not toss and turn while sleeping and tangle the yarn. If I don’t knit before going to sleep I am sometimes more restless and the covers are all tangled by the time I wake up, but not when I fall asleep while knitting, so that is good proof that a repetitive craft helps calm the body before sleep.

  • donna

    I crochet for an hour before I start my work day and during meetings so I focus on what is being said and the items are donated to make a wish thru a friend. It is a great way to gain composure when you need to let the mind rest and the body.

  • Nancy G

    I am so glad to hear so many say they crochet or knit in church. I asked our pastor for permission before doing so and he had no objections. I also find it helps me pay attention to his sermons. I also crochet or knit in long meetings for the same reason. I’ve had a few objections but they are put to rest when the presider sees me take notes and participate with comments, etc. Working with fiber has always left me with a peaceful, calm feeling of wellbeing.

    My mother recently passed away after a stroke. While in the palliative care unit before her death, the staff gave her a small afghan crocheted by a volunteer and I believe it had a soothing effect for Mom. Her burial request was that she be dressed comfortably and covered with an afghan that I had crocheted for her many years ago. I was honored that she wanted to spend eternity snuggled in that blanket that was infused with so much love!
    So our knitting and crocheting isn’t just “busy work” – it has profound effects on us as we create and profound effects on those who receive our work. :-)

  • Mimi Linda

    I learned to crochet at the age of eight when I pestered my Grandmother to teach me until she gave in. I have crocheted in high school in order to make gifts for teachers, made wedding presents, afgans as presents for my grandchildren, table scarfs for my self and others. I have made so many baby blankets, hats and other baby items that I cannot remember how many. It has been a delight to make each and every one. Sometimes I think that is the only way I have kept from going out of my mind during my childrens growing up years. I miss my Grandmother every day but thank the Lord every day that I pestered her to teach my all those years ago.

  • Rebecca Dixon-Jeffers

    Thank you, I always feel like there is something wrong with me when I am listening to groups of women talking about meditation, same with yoga. Tried them, hated them.
    I love crochet, it keeps me sane and I love that there is no limit to what I can create.

  • Tracy Nickels

    I just moved to the Spokane Valley. So meditating is something I do all the time. I love to knit and
    crochet. I too suffer from anxeity and depression, I’m going to mediknit and crochet like mad. :)

  • cher spradlin

    I knit dishcloths and washclothes as Christmas presents and hostess gifts with the same calming meditation intent. The simple repitition and stitch counting certainly relieves stress. And the small size of the project ensures portability when I have to be in a “waiting room” situation.

  • Marie

    I knit and crochet in the presence of my husband who is an anxious individual. He tells me that just watching me knit or crochet calms him. So now I know that both of us receive benefits from this activity.

  • Betty Eitner

    I love crocheting and have for many decades – fashionable or not. You’re so right, it is relaxing and really settles the brain after a busy day. Since there are only so many crochet gifts you can make for friends, I crochet scarves and give them away to homeless shelters, a local elementary school and women’s shelters. They are always appreciated and I don’t know if those receiving them realize that they also keep me sane…

  • Sherry Sheggrud

    I wrote a blog post about this very thing 5 years ago.

  • Susan

    Hi all! Crochet saved my life too. I had an aneurysm last year that was located where a very small percentage survive. Also an even smaller percentage of the survivors have minor complications and injuries, I was blessed that way. After several weeks in the ICU I was stepped down to a more normal hospital stay. I began to get restless as I healed and had a friend bring me yarn and hook. I foulme some yarn and a book. I couldn’t remember how at first but kept trying

  • udcrabbymom

    I was just saying last evening to my church’s knitting/crochet group that I find knitting and crocheting simple patterns to be similar to praying the rosary. There is something soothing and mind clearing about it. This is so important in this times when everything is so fast paced. It helps you to focus on what is important in life. Five years ago I developed inflammatory arthritis and couldn’t do a lot, but I could use my hands. I picked up a half done afghan and finished crocheting it. I hadn’t crocheted or knitted regularly for years. It has been beneficial in dealing with the pain and frustration of my illness. Many of the things I make are gifts or charity items. It really lifts you up to have something you can do well and share with others.

  • Itsgoodtobequeen

    I live near an Air Force Base and we have been making small prayer afghans that the USO ladies pass out to the troops deploying from here to the dessert countries . The planes are very cold and the dessert gets very cold at night. They tell the ladies that they are so great full to have them because they can use them as pillows on the flight over and roll them up in their packs to keep them with them. One young man was even glad to take the last one the USO had that was bright pink. It’s very comforting to me to make these prayer blankets. Good way to relieve stress

  • Ray

    Sitting and watching my favorite TV show while crocheting is a most productive way to “veg out”. I have produce well over 100 watch hats, numerous scarfs and a multitude of afghans over the last 3 plus decades of crocheting.

  • dfarro

    I’m so with you! I took a yoga class and all I could think about is what I could be doing if I wasn’t staring at the ceiling. I often crave the rhythm of crochet. It’s not always about the project but just the doing, the calming rhythm. I find this is a good time to crochet simple scarves to give away to local shelters making this time not only a calming experience but also a “feel good” experience.