A Good Yarn >> Knitting and Conversation

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This weekly group focuses on the use of knitting for wellbeing and aims to provide a safe and nurturing environment where individuals can develop new skills and enjoy the benefits of compassionate conversation while they sit and knit.

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Intro

Has creativity ever offered you comfort during a period of personal turmoil? Has selecting and starting a fresh project helped you to feel more grounded and settled within your immediate physical environment? Often the meditative and creative aspects of knitting can be just what the inner doctor ordered when it comes to coping with life challenges.

If you are looking to expand your current skills and have an interest in meeting and mixing with like-minded people, then this is the place for you.

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Overview

My late grandmother taught me how to knit when I was eight years old and I will always cherish the memory of that experience. I thoroughly enjoyed both the privilege of her tutelage and the item I created. In addition, something unique and precious passed between us as she shared her stories, anecdotes and worldly insights and attempted to ease my fears and growing pains.

For the next twenty years I dipped in and out of the process, without giving any conscious thought to the timing or motivation of these visits. In fact I only started knitting in earnest about 7 years ago, when a particularly challenging situation prompted me to return to it.

Since then, it has remained a close ally. I consider it one of my favourite crafts and utilise it daily as part of my routine.

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Why Knitting?

Kitting guides me through challenging times, offering me companionship and something positive to focus on. It reminds me that I have skills when I doubt myself the most. And it provides a small and manageable project with an ending that is both visible and achievable. I find it incredibly peaceful, rewarding and relaxing.

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Origins

The form of knitting that we are familiar with today dates back to the Middle Ages and the Middle East, where socks made of cotton or silk were knitted in intricate detail with Arabic blessings written into them.

Since then, knitting has spread throughout the world and most cultures now practice it in some form or another. It has taken many different forms, gone in and out of fashion, and been practiced as both an occupation and a hobby.

In the last ten years, it has experienced a dramatic rise in popularity and there are now numerous knitting cafes, social groups, books, magazines, blogs, forums, websites and television shows encouraging a new generation to adopt it.

An expression of anti-consumerism, self-identity and independence: knitting helps to instil a sense of belonging and rooted-ness within the community in a time when (as a culture) we have lost many of the ties that bind us together.

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For a more detailed history on the above, see The Origins of Knitting

Benefits

Research shows that the rhythmic movements of knitting induce a form of meditation which leads to mindfulness and encourages feelings of relaxation and calm. These repetitive movements also enhance the release of serotonin, an analgesic, proven to elevate mood and relieve pain.

Knitting is good for coordination and the memory too, with those who practice it reporting noticeable improvement in both cognition and concentration.

In addition, Knitting can be used to break free from habits and addictions, providing a constructive and enjoyable alternative that occupies the hands and mind.

And speaking of exercise: knitting is a wonderful hand exercise, which can improve hand function and coordination for a whole range of conditions in both the young and the old.

Knitting alongside others in groups fosters a sense of belonging, enabling individuals to come together, communicate and make friends. When the brain is occupied with a background automatic task, self-monitoring is switched off. Conversations become easier, deeper and more intimate quite quickly.

Having a sense of purpose and structure to each day is also important: it motivates people to be active and gives a sense of achievement when tasks are completed or new skills learnt. A sure outcome that can be planned: knitting can give control over one area of life in an environment where everything else may be in turmoil.

Accessible any time and in any situation, it can be done quietly, without stigma or mess.

In addition, it can also be beneficial for:

  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Migraines
  • Cognition
  • Concentration
  • Confidence
  • Isolation
  • Depression
  • Acute Pain
  • Medication Dependency
  • Recovery
  • Blood Pressure
  • Dementia
  • Negative Behaviours and Addictions

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The Process

For those who can’t wait to try their hand at knitting or who would like to get ahead, I have included the basics in pictorial instructions below.

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Further details can be found in the following documents: Knitting Basics, Learn to Knit, Introduction to Knitting.

In Summary

  • Knitting is addictive, rewarding, fun, fashionable, challenging and creative.
  • It can be done anywhere at any time.
  • The cost of each project is up to you.
  • Knitting can be done by people of all ages and skill sets.
  • Knitting brings people together in a time when culture has lost many of the social ties that bind us together.
  • Knitting induces a form of meditation which leads to a deep appreciation of the present and encourages feelings of relaxation and calm.
  • Knitting is the ideal portable self-soothing tool.
  • Knitting can help with a wide range of physical and mental conditions.

For information about dates, times, location and prices, please contact me with your questions.

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Additionally, if you would like to enquire about booking a session with me in private, please fill in the short form available from the booking enquiry page and email it along with your request. I will endeavour to reply to all enquiries in person at the first opportunity available.

all work © thelifeenrichmentblog.wordpress.com | all rights reserved | 2013
tel: +34 674 545 238 | email: myinsideout@mac.com | skype: thelifeenrichmentconsultant

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