Problem solving with yarn
I knew an executive once who kept a pack of cards in his desk. Whenever he needed to untangle a thorny problem, he would get them out and either deal them, play solitare, or build a house of cards. Naturally, we all thought he was goofing off, but he actually was tapping into one of the true values of knitting–or of any craft, for that matter. A value that many of us creative types would be wise to note: knitting occupies your brain.
More importantly, knitting (unless it’s something excruciatingly complicated) occupies just enough of your conscious brain to let your subconscious come out and play. This project is the perfect balance for such a use–more interesting than endless garter stitch or dreary ribbing, but not mind-numbing in its complexity. Creative occupation. It’s the same principle that gives you all your great ideas in the shower or while driving. It stops your inner editor, your inner sense of logic and protocol, and opens wide the brainstorm floodgate. Yes, folks, I’m a writer, I can wield a wicked metaphor when I chose to unleash my talents.
I also believe it’s why I seem to yearn for my knitting when I am stressed or stuck. Not only is it soothing, it’s useful. It is not ever a waste of time. Ever. Twitter, Facebook, those can waste time (and I’m guilty as charged on all those fronts!), although I do occasionally find solution and encouragement in those things. But not anything near the level of what I achieve while knitting.
Which only leads me around, once again, to my viewpoint that the world would be an infinitely better place if we all knit. Next time someone looks at you sideways because you’re knitting in a meeting or knitting when you “should be working,” you send ‘em to me. I’ll set ‘em straight.
I have several long pointed objects to back me up, besides.