August Knitting Transformations
August. A kind of “in-between” month, if you will. Schools are still out, vacations continue, kids are at camp, there’s a quiet build-up to September. The month of New Beginnings. It always feel like that to me, anyway. Which put me in mind of a GREAT organization project for all of my knitting STUFF!
Because, I’ve got knitting stuff. Who doesn’t?
BUT, before I get into my August Knitting Transformations, I wanted to talk about our knitting habits. Why we have them without even knowing it, and how we can make them better.
If you really want to reach your goals in life and business, you have to buckle down and get seriously disciplined. Know what you want to accomplish, how you’re going to accomplish it, and GET IT DONE.
Now, that quote from a post by Lynn Terry (a friend of mine and a really awesome successful woman!) sounds simple enough, yes? Like ANYTHING in life it’s amazingly deceptive; because you have to WANT it, in order to succeed.
IT. That “something” that is a goal you are reaching for. IT. That “dream” you are working to make a reality.
So, let’s look at some aspects of breaking BAD habits. 🙂
How to Analyze Your Bad Work / Hobby Habits
It’s really all the same, isn’t it? BUT, the first step in improving ANY habit is to figure out what’s working . . . and what is obviously NOT. Here’s something to think about:
Do more of what’s working, and less of what’s not.
One of the BEST things you can do is to do an assessment of your typical day. Just get a small notebook out and jot down everything you do all day long, and how long you are at that particular activity. E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. Every little thing right down to feeding the dogs and walking out for the mail.
If you go to work, well, then do your assessment on a weekend or a day off. Look for patterns in things you do; how much time do you spend online just playing games or checking email. Are there activities you do that are just plain time-wasters or procrastination destinations?
Do you have time in your evening to spend an hour or two doing something else? Or maybe you’re more of a morning person. Wherever you find yourself with time to spare, look at what you do in those time slots. Is it just silliness or something valuable? Look for the time wasters in your day!
How to BREAK Bad Work / Hobby Habits
After you do your Day & Time Assessment, you should have a pretty good idea of where you have time in your day or night — where you can free up time. It doesn’t have to be hours and hours, either. Just one hour a day or every other day will have you enjoying your knitting before you know it.
Once you KNOW exactly what is killing your productivity, then you’ll have the KEY to getting successful!
To putting your priorities in order. Because that is the way you will free up time, and give yourself the freedom to take up an endeavor you’ve been thinking about for a long time.
Here’s what I do, and highly recommend:
1. Decide 3 things that absolutely must be done every day. If you love to knit, include knitting in those 3 things. I’m not saying that every time you want to do something that it will happen. Things go on, you get sick, there’s a massive traffic jam, emergencies pop up and what you set out to do of a day, just doesn’t get done. It happens to us all.
2. Stick with the simpler projects. That’s not to say if you love knitting socks or complicated intarsia patterns you can’t. It’s just that it’s a lot easier when knitting, to keep it simple. You’ll find yourself FINISHING knitting projects faster, and that alone will give you a nice sense of accomplishment.
3. Get disciplined! Just do it. Set yourself one hour each evening to sit and knit and DO IT! No matter what’s on TV, who’s calling or texting, who wants you to go shopping at the last minute, say NO! You can you know, you can say no. Because there’s those priorities again; are they yours or are they someone else’s?
You know what? There will be times when everything goes to pot; when all your plans go out the window, when you try to succeed but just can’t. That’s okay. That’s why it’s important to FORCE yourself back to your Priorities. Just reel yourself back in.
And, how do you do that??? 😉
Get FOCUSED On Your Priorities
Distraction awaits all of us everywhere we go, and in everything we do. Especially these days with being online, browsing through all of your social media channels and having the freedom to do many things we might never have done before. So, each new day presents itself with the same number of hours for each of us; it’s how we will USE the time that makes us who we ultimately will become.
Knitting, just like any other hobby or interest, can take up lots of your time. If it’s something you love, then swell! If it’s something you’re still learning, it might be a challenge and one you’ll want to leave off the minute something bad strikes. Don’t fall for that! Keep moving forward, not backwards.
Set small goals for yourself and your day. Here’s the KEY:
Pick something and get it DONE.
Close out all distractions, (to the best of your ability) and sit and knit! If you’re NEW to knitting, remember, not every project is finished in the time it takes to get through the latest action thriller. Knitting takes time; some projects may take days, weeks, or even months to complete, judging by their complexity and how large a project it is.
Choose a Priority task and just stick it out! Go for it right to the end. Not all in one sitting, but make it a goal to finish what you start, no matter what. No matter what enticing new pattern pops up, what pretty knitting picture shows up in your favorite knitting magazine, no matter that someone gives you a Wish List knitting book you’ve been dying for. Don’t stop what you’re knitting until it’s over.
Take notice of the times you spend knitting. Are you more productive early in the day, or are you still chugging away in the late evenings? Note when your “peak knitting hours” are and knit during those times for best efficiency.
Thought of the Day: To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe. Anatole France
It is SO important to get ourselves organized in every way! Because once everything has a place of its own, your work and hobby habits HAVE to follow. It’s almost a given. Getting systems into place WILL help to break bad habits, and then the excitement will follow; that now you’ve reached a level of KNITTER that others may not have achieved yet.
Change Your Work or Hobby Space For Better Flow
Change your environment. You’ll be amazed at how it will help you achieve MORE. Isn’t that what you want, after all? 🙂
This is what I’m setting out to do this month of August. I am tearing apart my second bedroom where most of my knitting paraphernalia lives. The armoire, the desk, the bookcases, the closet, it’s all fair game.
By re-organizing all of my knitting world I have priorities already in mind; for my projects to be arranged according to current, finished, future, supplies, books, selling, and more.
Sounds like a BIG project, but I’ve got all month. So, every day a little more gets done.
So, get ready for some fun posts and recommendations along the way. Click the CAROUSEL below for a few of the best books on organizing and arranging your knitting life!
And, remember that the next time you find yourself falling into those old knitting habits, FOCUS on what matters, get a Priority in mind and STICK with it! It’s the only way. 🙂
P.S. Remember this: if you have a desire to pick up your cellphone because you MUST have something in your hands, try your KNITTING NEEDLES instead. You’ll be amazed at the results. Nothing your phone can do!
In my next post, (next week) I’ll share my “Home Knitting Space” inventory — what you need to create a beautiful knitting space in your life and how to best organize for that.
We’ll also discuss what to do with “the stacks and stuff” that tend to accumulate in your knitting workspace. Especially with all your knitting stash. Yikes!
See you then! 😉