When I was thinking about writing this blog, I asked myself, why do I want to write about crochet? Why do I want to make patterns and publish them?
That’s simple, I thought.
It’s because crochet makes me so friggin’ happy.
End of the blog you’d think. Not very valuable content haha.
Unless, I thought, crochet could make you happy as well!
And it can according to science!
When I started crocheting in 2017 I immediately felt how addictive it was. The #crochetaddict was born. When I’d been doing it for like a year I started telling people how happy crochet made me. It literally felt like these waves of happiness were flowing through my body. I started getting up earlier so I could crochet, I started dreaming about crochet and wherever I went I took a crochet hook and some yarn with me.
I suspected that my body was releasing some hormones whilst crocheting but I didn’t understand why. Was it the creative process, the feeling of accomplishing something, actually making something?
This needed some explanation.
The brain as a drugstore
Apparently, I learned, when you use your hands, your brain starts producing all these feel-good hormones like dopamine and serotonin. And they are the most natural antidepressants that exist!
Why would the brain do that?
Well, in the old days, it was a matter of life or death if you used your hands or not. You had to make fire, chop wood, make clothes to stay warm etc and by making us feel good about doing these things, the brain made it easier for us.
By rewarding us with a bunch of neurochemicals the brain made it addictive to work with our hands.
That was a smart move of the brain.
And although we don’t rely on our hands as much as we used to to survive, the mechanism is still the same. When I crochet a nice scarf, I get rewarded by my brain.
And that’s not the end of our crochet- success story!
More positivity about crafting
Crochet has other positive benefits than feeling happier or less- depressed. It can help you feel calmer and reduce anxiety by just focusing on the project in your hands.
This way it can also help you fall asleep at night as you can use it as a cool-down method. The easy, repetitive movements that make up crocheting can ease your body and mind. (According to the American Counseling Association) And a good night sleep is essential for a good mood! I know for mine its is.
Of course it’s not only crochet that has these health benefits. Other forms of creativity like knitting and cooking can do the same.
The charity ‘Knit for Peace’ analyzed several studies on the benefits of knitting. They came to the following conclusion:
“There is an enormous amount of research showing that knitting has physical and mental health benefits, that it slows the onset of dementia, combats depression and distracts from chronic pain,” the review stated. “It is an activity that can be continued into extreme old age. It is a sociable activity that helps overcome isolation and loneliness, too often a feature of old age. It is a skill that can continue when sight and strength are diminished.”
Wow! Who would have thought?! Why didn’t I start sooner? People need to know this!
I think it’s amazing that something so simple can have such a huge impact on a person’s life.
Crochet the world a better place
Last but not least I feel the need to mention that another wonderful thing about crochet is that we make the world a better place with our beautiful makes!
They don’t only make ‘us happy. We can make other people happy as well by inspiring them and sometimes by giving them the most amazing presents ever, handmade with love.
A win-win if you ask me 🙂
Of course I’d love to hear about your experience! Please leave your thoughts below.