I find myself sitting at my desk with my jaw clenched tight, shoulder and neck muscles locked, and my patience gone a lot these days. Some of it is caused by general life stress but most is caused by work frustrations, primarily difficult coworkers, changing criteria and dealing with family law in general. These are the days that I turn to my knitting to help me deal with stress. As I often joke, I knit to stay sane and so I don’t kill someone because let’s face it, prison orange is not my color.
I have never been very successful in sitting still and breathing yoga-style. Mainly, because I can never get my brain to shut up long enough for that. However, knitting is my meditation. There is something peaceful and relaxing in the repetitive action of knitting and purling that soothes my frustrations.
I will admit, though, that on days when I am really stressed out, the best thing for me to work on is something mindless (garter stitch, for example) that does not require a lot of pattern reading. There is nothing worse than knitting to relieve stress on a complicated project and finding yourself making mistakes and dropping stitches. Talk about frustrating.
If you find yourself stress to the point of no return, pick up a craft like knitting or something similar that will help you learn to relax and let go of your day.
Here are some interesting articles on knitting and stress relief: