How to stay focused on crochet projects is something I have always struggled with. I always start each crochet project with the best of intentions, but the ghost of crochet past (my plastic storage container) is filled with partially completed projects. I’m still working through this pile, but I don’t have the energy to talk about yet.
I’ve tried all the tips, until I realized I needed to embrace parts of my personality that work against each other: Love of making lists & being easily distracted.
1. Keep a running list of projects
In my crochet journal, I have a page where I keep a running list of ALL my projects. This page will NEVER be shown in Instagram. It is not pretty, but it makes sense to me. I put the project name, a description of it, and what inspires me about it.
2. Circle the most important & set a deadline
Knowing what is the most important and setting a deadline really help me keep on track. Usually the most important on my list is working on my next pattern release. Setting a date and holding myself to that deadline is also very important to keeping my focus. I put reminders everywhere, on my desk, on my phone, in my calendar, anywhere I might need that visual cue.
Importance is something that can change from day-to-day, so allow yourself to change the importance of a project if needed. For example The Reverie Shawl, was not on any list until my mom got sick. Then all my priorities shifted, this shawl and resulting pattern got pushed to the top of the list and all other WIPs were put on hold. Life happens.
3. Allow yourself to get distracted
It probably sounds crazy, but I allow myself to get distracted (within limits). Giving myself permission to get distracted allows me to relax and unwind. This distraction time is necessary for my creativity and is how my project list typically grows, but it is also necessary for my productivity. Without the distraction time, I would burn out.
I do set limits on this distraction time. If I don’t then I could get completely derailed. Sometimes the limits are allowing myself X minutes to free-crochet or whip up a baby beanie. My main rule for distractions – No NEW big projects.
4. Scheudle your time
Ugh! This is probably the part I hate the most, scheduling my time. My dream job would be to make living off my crochet and do nothing but crochet all day long.
Here in the real world, I don’t, so I need to manage the amount of “free” time as best I can. I would love to life a life without a schedule but the reality is, if I want to a do my day job, spend time with my family, workout, crochet, blog, etc etc, I NEED to schedule my time, hour-by-hour. Most days, I don’t pick up a crochet hook until after the kids are in bed.
5. Breakout large projects into smaller pieces
The granny square blanket I made for my mom is a good example of this. The granny square blanket was made up of 80 granny squares. I would work on 5-10 granny squares at a time, including weaving in the ends, then put them in a basket. After a couple of weeks of working on these, I had all 80 done!
How do you stay focused? Do you ignore all distractions or allow yourself distraction time? Let me know in the comments.