Crafting Can Take Your Mind Off Stress

6th+graders+collage+their+own+journals+during+Advanced+Journalism.

Amanda Triplett

6th graders collage their own journals during Advanced Journalism.

Annabelle Rollins, Studio D Writer

During the current pandemic lock down, many community members feel scared and stressed. Hoping to keep your job, having to go to town to get groceries, and trying to stay “busy” with things for you to do- and possibly your kids, all add stress that wasn’t there before. Have you tried to take your mind off things by doing something? Has it worked?

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What types of crafting or DIYing are there, you ask?

Well, there is coloring. Something that you can do to color if you don’t have a coloring book is print out a black-and-white picture from the internet, and then color it with whatever you may have. Colored pencils, crayons, markers. Whatever! Another one is sketching or doodling. Go around your house and find a pretty picture or scene and then sketch it, or just doodle random things and fill your paper with doodles! Something else is painting. Get a canvas, a piece of wood, or cardboard, find some paints, then paint whatever your heart desires. Don’t have any paints? Make some from nature around you! It is proven that this can help you relax, so try it out!

How Can It Affect Me?

It has been proven that crafting can reduce stress. An article titled, “How Crafting Can Reduce Stress and Benefit Your Life” says, “Participating in a craft or hobby can strengthen your confidence in your own abilities to complete a project. It is a reminder to yourself that you are talented and should not give up. Doing crafts and creative projects also diverts your focus from your anxieties and relaxes your body.

So if you feel like you are losing control over your life, start a craft project to help deal with the chaos surrounding you.  The article “The Health and Mental Benefits of Crafting” states, “The voluntary mental focus applied while crafting and sense of accomplishment when finished, provide emotions that can be hard to attain when cycling through the daily routine.”

Not only can crafting help lower your stress and get your mind off things, but there are also other health benefits attributed to crafting. Improve your mood, boost your brainpower, increase social activity & communal support, helps with hand-eye coordination, and can help fight aging. Crafting can help with anything!

So, we have seen how it can affect us, but what are the results? Here are two people who have been crafting. “I have been DIYing a lot during the lock down. I have done a lot of yard work and I have also built a loft for each of my children.

Has this helped you calm down and/or vent your feelings?

Not the yard work- it has just made me tired, but the lofts have because it’s creative and a really cool thing to do for my kids.” Wyatt Smith, middle school parent. 

With Amanda Parsons, middle school parent, she adds, “I have been doing jigsaw puzzles. I am also about to redo a wall mirror for my daughter’s bedroom. Working on jigsaw puzzles relaxes me and makes me feel calm. The mirror project is exciting because I’m taking something old and giving it a new life.” Has crafting raised your spirits and/or made you happier since you first started?  “Yes! It is invigorating to bring an old object back to life.”

Overall, crafting can have a positive impact on someone, regardless of age, ability level or income. It can help reduce stress, help you focus, improve your mood, boost your brainpower, and help with hand-eye coordination. So next time you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed, take a little break and start a new craft or DIY.