Amanada Woodbury

How Crochet Solves Your Stress Problems in 20 Minutes

You know your mind and body are connected. Physically and emotionally. You’ve heard the phrase “mind over matter,” but why bring this up and when we’re talking crochet? Because it matters when stress is involved.
You usually know and feel when you’re stressed. You can feel it in your bones — you can even see and feel it in your skin, hair, and muscles. But when you relieve that stress, bit by bit, you’ll see the physical change and improvement. It may take time, but you’ll see it.

How the mind of a crochet addict works

It basically goes like this: There is a creative section of your brain (the frontal lobe) and it’s activated when you’re doing something creative, like crocheting or using your imagination. Your brain releases feel-good chemicals like serotonin and dopamine, which is why you may find crochet addicting and hard to put down.
A chain of reactions occurs in other sections of your brain during the creative process, as well. When you’re crocheting you’re using both your left and right sides of your brain at the same time. So, it’s like you’re using more of your brain at once — that’s so cool! That’s also why it feels like you can multitask better.

Repetitive motion soothes the mind

Crocheting a simple item produces “forced meditation” which helps with stress relief. It doesn’t work with just any level of crochet, but it works really well with beginner-level projects like dishcloths, small blankets, and scarves. Any pattern that calls for easy, basic stitches with memory-friendly repeats will do. It’s the repetitive motion that soothes the mind and gets you flowing which allows your thoughts to come easily.

Creativity changes the brain

For all you data-lovin’ analytical types, there’s actual evidence that shows how utilizing creativity (like crochet) physically changes your brain and helps relieve stress. A lot of research exists on this topic, like this article from Forbes or this one from Medical News Today.

crochet relieves stress pattern

Crochet your own brain using this pattern, available from ChrysN on Instructables.

How to make change happen

When your mind is being taken care of in a more positive way, your body will follow. Crochet is one way to encourage a healthy mind and move toward happiness and less stress. Changing the way you speak to yourself is another.

Celebrate what you did right

You believe the stories you tell yourself. When you accomplish a crochet project, make sure you celebrate that win! Don’t go through looking for mistakes, take a good look at what you did right. That small change will add up every time and your mind will start to believe in your progress and will reward you for that!

Welcome a new way of thinking

When you focus on improving your way of thinking, you can welcome a more positive point of view. This could lead to making healthier choices — getting outside more, healthier meals, wanting to spend time with loved ones. Making better life choices that help you thrive and live the life you know you deserve. Healthier living helps cope with depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.

Happy mind = healthy body

When you start thinking positively, it ripples out to other parts of your life. Your mindset improves and you start to reprioritize and realize who is there to support you in your personal growth.
You may also start to gain confidence and set those important boundaries. And when boundaries and self-confidence are in place, you should no longer feel guilty for taking time for yourself (maybe to crochet that project you’ve been itching to make)!

crochet relieves stress meme

Although this sounds funny, there’s some truth to it. Crochet is a great way to ease stress and anxiety, and if it keeps you from getting mad enough to lash out, even better.

Crochet improves your mindset

When you crochet, you’re able to better focus. You’re better at problem-solving, and you’re able to break through emotional walls more effectively. This is why it’s helpful to crochet during times of stress, grief, sadness, excitement, anger, and joy. By doing so, you can get to a deeper level of healing and gratefulness. That’s amazing for your mindset growth!
When you’re able to think and feel those emotions on a deeper level, you’re more open to managing those emotions. You’re more willing to ask for help when you need it. Therapy counselors often recommend a creative outlet like crocheting to help their patients to open up.

The secret to a 20-minute solution

Consider how you feel when making a simple double-crochet scarf. Your mind probably wanders, and you may find yourself thinking about something totally unrelated to what you’re doing.
Now, imagine doing it intentionally when you have a problem or situation that needs a solution. Instead of overthinking and worrying about the outcome, get out your hook, yarn, and a simple project. After crocheting for about 20 minutes, get a pen and paper and jot down all the thoughts and feelings that come to mind — see how many pathways you can come up with to solve that problem or situation.
When you crochet, you can think outside the box and clearly list your priorities. I’ve used crochet to remember all the things I need to have on a list to prepare for a trip. You can use it for any issue that needs attention — it shouldn’t take more than about 20 minutes of simple crochet to see the benefits of this “forced” meditation.

crochet relieves stress clock

Sometimes when I intentionally crochet for stress relief, I also use a 5-minute quiet breathing exercise to help relax my mind, especially when the kids have helped add to that stress. (Mandala Clock crochet pattern by Lucy Ward can be found in Issue 36 of Happily Hooked Magazine. Wanna make it? Go here! This one was made by Courtney!)

What I learned

Not only did I see results in my life, but I now teach high achieving women how to turn that stress into a talent that rejuvenates while it unravels stress and gets them “unstuck.”

Truthful evidence

I’ve witnessed more of the benefits of crochet in my own life, as well as in my crochet clients who are learning this craft. Before crochet, I was quiet, withdrawn, had very low self-esteem, and barely enough confidence to stand up for myself. After I learned to crochet and started sharing more, I noticed that I was coming out of my shell and saying “Yes” to more opportunities.
I built up my confidence with every new crochet skill level I mastered and began to set boundaries with friends and family. I was able to actually say “no” to things that didn’t bring me joy!
Now, I am more true to myself than I ever felt was possible! I would have never considered an opportunity like writing for a blog for “Happily Hooked!” I owe it to that hook and yarn for guiding me through it all.

Releasing anxiety

I recently worked with a client who has anxiety and was petrified to become a first-time mom. She was terrified about finding friends who would be a good fit for her. She dealt with limiting beliefs that held her back for years!
After learning crochet and taking part in some mindset sessions, she not only joined a “Mom” group on Facebook, but she actually set up a playdate with her new little one. She now has the confidence and the tools to work through anxiety with the use of crochet when she needs it the most. And she can make the cutest baby things, too.

Put it into practice

The next time you’re feeling overly stressed or at the height of an emotional time, pick up a simple crochet project. See what happens when you let go and let the crochet guide your thoughts. You might be surprised at how your physical tension starts to fade away. You should start to feel calmer, too.
I know that my clients and I are not the only ones to discover and utilize this amazing benefit of crocheting. If you have a short story of how crochet has relieved your stress, we’d love to hear it!


Margaret, here. I'd be remiss to mention how many awesome patterns we have at Happily Hooked that are perfect for the type of crochet that Amanda mentions in her awesome article. It seems like there are perfect patterns in almost every issue I open. For instance, I randomly opened issue #60 and found Shawna's gorgeous Friendship Rug. It's basically made up of simple half-double-crochet stitches, but it looks much more complicated.
friendship rug crochet pattern
If you're a pattern hound like me, you'll want to sign up for a Happily Hooked Lifetime membership and get access to ALL of our patterns going all the way back to issue #01. And that includes all the Pattern Pack Pro issues, too. So, that's over 1,400 patterns that you have access to digitally. That's just … 🤯 mind-blowing. And THEN, you get ever issue EVER going forward until the end of time. For no more money. I won't even go into all the extra stuff you get in the members-only section. That's just bonus after bonus.



Amanada Woodbury

Hi! I am Amanda Woodbury at I am a mom of 2 boys and have an amazing husband (who doesn't mind the yarn stash!). I learned how to crochet back in 2014 when I was at my lowest point. After a couple of years of self-teaching, I began to feel the mindset effects of crocheting. So, I shared that experience and also received two Crochet Instructor Certifications through the Craft Yarn Council and the American Crochet Association. I added Mindset Coaching to crochet instruction when I found that all my students were also feeling the same benefits as myself. My goal in life is to teach crochet so that you can reignite your mindset and live the life you deserve!

See previous post
See next post

What do you think?