It’s time to get crafty this summer. There are so many different projects you can begin, whether that’s needle art, DIY, or woodworking. Once you get started on these projects, you’ll instantly feel relief. More and more people are beginning to recognize the power crafting has over their mood and their health.
Everyone has different ways of dealing with life’s complexities. For some, it’s exercise, and for others, it’s an annual vacation. If those don’t seem to soothe you enough during the summer months, crafting is a wonderful option available year-round. The mental focus one must have to complete a project provides an accomplishment that may be difficult to obtain in daily life.
Whether you want to stay within the comforts of your own home or join a knitting club, needle arts and other crafts have many various health benefits. We’ve laid out a few of the most impactful benefits to show you how crafting can make a huge difference in all aspects of your life.
8 Wonderful Health Benefits of Crafting
1. Improves Your Dexterity
Needle work requires quite a bit of strength in your fingers and hands. Though you need to make sure you stretch out your hands and take reasonable breaks, crafting can do a lot for your dexterity. Keeping your hands moving each day, even if it’s just 10 minutes of needle work, can keep your hands stronger for longer.
2. Promotes Self-Confidence
Crafting can help boost a person’s self-esteem. You’ll work on building new skills, you’ll feel more productive each day, and most wonderfully, you’ll create beauty through an intimate form of self-expression. Creating and finishing a project can make you feel better about yourself and your abilities. Start with small projects first, and completing those can help you feel more confident in taking on tougher projects—both for crafting purposes and in other places of your life.
3. Reduces Anxiety
Crafts in general, no matter what they are, keep your hands and mind focused on the task at hand. Instead of overthinking about different events or overanalyzing yourself, crafting can help bring your mind to a place of calm and ease. In fact, according to the Craft Yarn Council, when it comes to people who have problems with their health “85% say it helps them relax. For 81% it decreases stress and for 57% it decreases anxiety.” The relaxed and repetitive motions of a lot of crafting projects are very soothing—it’s quite similar to the calming effects of breathing exercises and meditation.
4. Keeps Your Mind Sharp
Mentally engaging activities, like crafting, help protect and maintain various neurological pathways to the brain. In a study from the Journal of Neuropsychiatry & Clinical Neurosciences, researchers found that participants who engaged crafts like knitting and quilting had a lower risk of mild cognitive impairment. These crafts often need some sort of math ability without you even thinking about it. One of the most important things you can do for your health throughout your life is to keep your brain active.
5. Helps With Insomnia
Just like how crafting reduces anxiety by soothing your mind, crafting also helps reduce insomnia. The often repetitive nature of crafts can help your body wind down, and working on something soothing like needlework can get your brain to relax enough to help you sleep. The next time you can’t sleep, try focusing on a calming project to help soothe your mind and soul.
6. Minimizes Irritability
When you’re stuck inside during the winter or you have a long wait at the airport, try crocheting or knitting to keep yourself occupied. Crafting is a positive outlet that can help you get through those times when you’re grumpy, frustrated, or restless. If you’ve had a long day at work and you come home still irritable, take thirty minutes to delve into a craft to get your creativity focused on the task at hand, instead of on the things that frustrated you throughout the day.
7. Relieves Depression
Probably one of the biggest health benefits of crafting—specifically that of crocheting and knitting—is the possibility for relief of depression’s symptoms. The constant repetition of these crafts not only calms, but releases serotonin as well. The natural anti-depressant combats the negativity and depressive behavior a lot of individuals face in their daily life. An article by CNN discusses a study that showcased this benefit. The survey was taken by more than 3,500 knitters, and 81% of the individuals who suffer from depression reported feeling happier after knitting—more than half of them reported feeling very happy!
8. Increases Social Activity
When people get more into crafting, they often end up becoming a part of an incredibly supportive community. Online crafting communities are a wonderful place for people to connect and learn, but more importantly, these communities give people a chance to feel a sense of togetherness. Crafting provides people with a unique social atmosphere—knit-ins and crochet-ins help you connect with the people who are working on similar projects. Crafts can help people who lack social skills improve and strengthen their connections with others.
Quick Crafting Projects for Your Health
Below we’ve laid out a few of our favorite projects to help you begin your crafting career. We hope that they aid in stabilizing your mood and bring you a sense of accomplishment.
- Knit a pot holder
- Cut out fabric for a quilt
- Finger knit with your favorite yarn
- Water color painting
- Scrap booking
- Jewelry making
- DIY pillowcase
- Work on your calligraphy and make homemade cards
- Build a birdhouse
Hopefully these eight different health benefits of crafting have showed you how impactful a few minutes of crafting can be in your life. As you plan your upcoming projects, check out Lindley General Store—we’re stocked up on all the items you could need to start your crafting journey. If you want to try your hand at quilting, you can get everything you need from our quilt shop.
Here at Lindley, we try to make sure that you only need to stop at one place for all your crafting supplies. Pick up your knitting supplies, quilting fabric, and other crafting goods and let your creative side blossom! We hope you enjoy every part of the crafting process and reap all the rewards of completing a project. Happy Crafting!