What handicraft has to do with mindfulness

Recently I had the chance and the pleasure to again present my ‘Multiple Selves?!’ talk on growing your leadership abilities twice: at The Architechture Gathering in Munich and at Agile Tour London. There I also talked about mindfulness as well as mindful practises.

Be it in talks or workshops, I always try to make it as tangible as possible… what such a mindfulness practice can be like – because it can be so much more than the “usually knowns” like meditation or breathing. And it is the variation in mindful practises  what eases the connection, what enabled bridge-building, for the awesomely diverse people out there.

Talking of mindful practises: Today I decided to give crocheting a try. Why is that? you might ask….

The short, knowledgeable answer is: because it is simple enough, keeps attention focused and yet it is quite unrelated to mindfulness itself. Sounds like a perfect practise, doesn’t it?

The longer, authentic and more personal answer is: I am currently at home, forced to rest because my body recently told me firmly “hey dude, you haven’t listened to me well enough for quite some time… and so I want YOU to LISTEN TO ME. RIGHT. NOW! My brain is currently more than full, mindfulness feels sooo hard… more like mindFULLness. The crocheting equipment was there and it seemed worth a try.

So far this type of handcrafting serves as a decent informal mindful practise: it keeps the mind in the here & now, I started feeling new bodily sensations (because there’s some fiddling with wool and needles involved ;-)), the crafting requires some concentration and focus – but also not too much to stay curious and open-minded. Quite an experience!

Which experiences do you have when it comes to handcrafting and mindfulness?