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This article will be all about how crochet saved my life as well as general crochet health and its benefits. Usually, I write many crochet patterns and tutorials as well as roundups that I publish weekly. But in this article, I would like to focus and talk about a side of me that most of you do not know or many crochet designers may not want to talk about if they happen to be in the same or similar situation as me.
Crochet literally saved my life, not only once, but many times, in many different situations. I will break up the article to make it a nice read and not so confusing like my mind is most of the time. Crochet health and crochet therapy are in my opinion not talked about enough in this society. In this society, crocheting, like knitting, is considered to be for “old” people, which in my experience is finally changing such that there are an equal amount of young people finding the joy in this craft than just elderly people.
What is Crochet Health?
Crocheting has many health benefits and can help people cope with hardship and has the possibility to supplement therapy.
Crochet Health Benefits:
- Reduces sadness
- Calms the mind
- Calms your nerves
- Creates a community feeling
- Allows you to find and make more friends
- Reduces financial burdens
- Reduces Irritability
- Makes you feel special and happy
- Allows you to make gifts for others
- Builds Self-Esteem
Little Background About Me
I will get into each of them in some way or another in this lengthy and very detailed crochet health article. But first, let start talking about me and my background and why I feel so strongly about writing about crochet health and its benefits. If you do not know me yet, my name is Nicole Riley and I am originally from Germany and was always interested in crafts since I was very young. I learned to knit first and then crochet much later on.
I earned my Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Cell Biology from the University of San Diego, California and still work passionately at a science institute in San Diego. One of the many courses I took was about mental health and how our memory works which really helped me understand how things happen the way they do for us.
This course also helped me understand how crafting, due to its muscle memory, can make us calm and peaceful from within. When you learn something new and challenging, things can get interesting and your brain tries to focus. But when it learns a certain memory such that it becomes a long-term memory it will make a person feel calmer. Now, being able to create something for yourself or others fills your brain with happy emotions that are similar to when you eat candy and being happy is addictive, and therefore, you want to continue to crochet. A simple and easy formula, right?
How Crochet Saved My Life – Crochet Mental Health
Well, let me start by saying, that it was many years ago when I starting falling into a big deep hole. I had some personal problems going on and during that time, I did not have much time to focus on any kind of craft.
But I am a crafty person who needs to be challenged or I would feel sad. As I felt the desire to earn more money which created a challenge for myself, I started crocheting to sell my handmade creations which started to make me feel ecstatic. But to produce the same item again and again became boring for me very quickly. I felt more like a machine than I person that was challenged.
How Crocheting Saved My Life – Financially
At that point, I started looking around and trying to figure out how other crocheters got so big and made so much money. I was impressed, but I very quickly realized that this will not be a quick fix to get some money. That is also when I first learned about the magic word – AUTOPILOT. I wanted to be on autopilot and not work like a crazy machine and lose the fun on crocheting.
I found my solution shortly after: I needed to become a crochet pattern designer. I always created my own patterns but it never crossed my mind to actually be able to earn money from it. I was able to find something exciting where I can take others with me on a journey, a journey of a better life. I have always been a people pleaser.
As I started to figure out how to create my own website and really become a patterns designer, I learned a lot in a short period of time. It was very overwhelming and sure felt like a challenge to me. It only took me a few months when I suddenly started to earn a very good amount of money for a new crochet designer.
But then I joined the Mediavine as a publisher and started to earn ad money on my website. Fast forward to now and I moved to the next higher ad company called Adthrive where I earn even more than before. Besides that, I started to connect with other crochet designers, grew on social media and made extra income from affiliate commissions which all helped me financially as well as mentally.
How Crocheting Creates Health Benefits
But then sometimes, when I slip into a hole, again, that I feel like I have a hard time getting out of – it usually happens around the same time when I lose my crojo (crochet mojo) – I feel like I can’t pick up my crochet hook and yarn and start designing.
However, I committed myself to publish a website article at least 3 times a week. It might seem like a lot of work, but I am able to handle it very well and feel delighted doing it. In fact, I am asked many times, how in the world I am able to do that and have a full-time job and take care of my family. Well, I love a good challenge and being German, I am very organized. Also when you publicly commit yourself to something, you have a hard time not keeping your word – at least, for me that is true.
So, when I slip into my hole, I try to focus on my deadlines, either given to me or ones I made for myself and publicly announced which I do through weekly Facebook LIVE’s at 5pm, PST or my newsletter. When I do that and get close to the deadline, I get nervous and happy at the same time, and then I finally get my crojo back and have the internal desire to please others and myself. Finally, I get my motivation back and gain my desire to crochet or create content again.
Furthermore, when you crochet something you might make a mistake and that can be frustrating. That causes some people to lose their crojo also. But I see it as a challenge. When you make a mistake, you have two choices. You either go back (frogging) and fix it or you leave it and make it shine like it was supposed to be there.
How to Help Someone Learn to Crochet for their Health
I can tell you that when I learned to crochet and started to do it every day, whether it was for money, gifts, creating a pattern or anything else, I became happier.
And once I started to join crochet communities, mostly virtually, I felt even happier. People were so amazed by my creations and I got so much positive feedback that I almost forgot I ever had depression. So, if you know someone who feels sad a lot, try to teach them to crochet (or knit or any other craft) and have them join communities in that niche. It may not work, but it is worth a try.
They will feel motivated and regain self-esteem and their mental health will improve using crochet. They do not have to become designers, but just creating something with hands using their mind will distract them and create happy hormones in their brain. Crocheting for health benefits suddenly becomes a necessity for them. I have a Crochet 101 Guide on how to get started with crocheting and learn the basic stitches that can help someone learn this wonderful craft. So be sure to share that one. Remember, I am not a medical doctor. This is just my opinion and my experience.
My Crochet Health Benefits
All in all, crocheting saved my life in so many ways, whether it is financially, mentally and even physically. I felt the internal desire to write down my journey and thoughts on how crocheting not only helps me but can also help you or others. And I feel like crocheting is one of the many ways, you or someone else can feel happy again.
Be sure to share this article with the world. Crocheting can be a therapy supplement or be therapy on its own. If you see a person who needs a pick-me-up, encourage him or her to use their hands and create something using crochet. Also, check out Kathryn Vercillo’s book Crochet saved my Life where she goes into a detail about the benefits of crocheting and knitting for health benefits.