Crafting is good for us. It can be broken down into three main stages:
When you decide to make something, this something must first be visualized. And visualization begins in the imagination. Imagination stimulates our brain. It not only provides solutions and options but good company as well.
Probably the most important aspect of crafting is the process and not the product. For one, by focusing our attention, crafting is active meditation. Repetitive actions, such as those of knitting, can be hypnotic thus relax us. And this relaxation provides a number of benefits such as lower heart rate and blood pressure. By redirecting our focus, crafting can distract us from both physical and emotional problems.
When we create, our brain releases dopamine, a hormone that gives you a sense of well-being. Depression is often triggered by a reduction in the production of dopamine so we can say crafting is good for our mental health.
Crafting is a cognitive activity that stimulates brain cell communication thus fights mental decline. It also improves hand-eye coordination, spatial awareness, and motor dexterity.
Crafting provides us with ”A Room of One’s Own” in that it, when fully immersed in the process, we just flow in a world that’s truly ours. Even Einstein and Gandhi indulged in crafting to clear their minds.
When we finally complete a project, we are rewarded not just with a physical object but also with a sense of satisfaction and our self-efficacy is reinforced.
Sometimes the initial enthusiasm for a project dissipates. And this happens for a variety of reasons. We lose interest, get distracted, or simply realize we don’t like our project. So how do we declutter our sacred spaces of unfinished projects? We can try selling them on Ebay, throw them away (but that’s not at all ecological!), transform them into conceptual art, or restyle them. But we can also pass them on to others.
Have you ever played Pass The Drawing (or Exquisite Corpse) where everyone is given a piece of paper and pencil and told to draw. Then after a minute, a timer goes off and the drawings get passed to the person sitting next to them. After five minutes, the passing stops. The resulting drawings are a mix of styles that can be entertaining or even poetic.
So why not try Pass the Project?
My friend, Anthy, is a genius designer. She has so many ideas that she can’t actualize or complete them all. That’s how I wound up with an unfinished purse made from crocheted twine. It took me awhile to decide how to finish it but once I did, the results delighted me. Not only because I liked the aesthetics, but even though geographically we were far apart, Anthy and I shared an experience.
For all your unfinished craft projects, why not try Pass the Project?
While putting together this post, my blog buddy, Jo of Cranky Ceramics, told me that these unfinished projects are often called UFOs, unfinished objects!!!!
Related: Pruning a lifestyle (pruning our desires) + Decluttering Los Ojos (throwing away unfinished projects) + Decluttering Decluttering Decluttering + IN PRAISE OF HANDS: Knit yourself well + Craftivism: Activism Using Craft -30-