This is the second post about the positive psychology – crochet link and I’m so excited to share some of the things I’ve learned about this subject over the past few years!
Use Crochet to get on the “Upward Spiral”
Positive Psychology proposes the concept of an “upward spiral”. A positive emotion will bring with it a more positive appraisal of your circumstances, a more positive response from you to an occurrence and from others towards you, thus affecting not only your current situation but also shaping your future. In the long run, happiness is simply the consequence of adding more and more of these little positive emotions into our everyday life.
I almost feel like there should be an exclamation point at the end. The simplicity is very exciting to me. With this concept in mind it starts to make sense exactly why crocheting has a self described therapeutic effect for so many people.
Why The Happiness Odds are against us
Evolutionary we are programmed to be more aware of negative emotions such as fear or anger since these emotions were crucial for our immediate physical survival. That is the reason why we have what they call a “negativity bias”. This basically means that the odds are stacked against humans being happy. Researchers have been working to find a ratio between positive and negative emotions throughout a persons day and the magic number seems to be 3 : 1. You need three or more positive occurrences / emotions for every one negative occurrence / emotion in your day just to stay on an upward spiral. (take the test here!).
Crochet is good for your Positivity Ratio
There is a silver lining to this research, though. The intensity of your daily positive emotions does not seem to be as important as the frequency, which brings me back to crochet. All of this information seems somewhat counter intuitive to me. I am, by nature, a skeptic. I have a strong bias against a one size fits all solution, like a 3:1 happiness ratio, no matter the intensity of the emotion. I have been looking to find an answer, though, as to why introducing crochet into my life has boosted my happiness level so much more than would logically make sense and this ratio might be the reason. If you read through the list of discernible positive emotions you can see how dreaming up, creating and finishing a project would touch on many of them.
Ten little Positive Emotions and why crochet can bring about all of them
I want to go through this list slowly because I feel like we are in many ways happiness illiterates. You would think that there would be an emphasis in school on realizing and cultivating positive emotions, but somehow we are just expected to know how to be happy. Looking at how many people struggle with depression and finding out about how tricky this downward spiral of negative emotions is to escape, we are very much clueless. You are thrown into the sea without a compass or a weather forecast and it is no surprise so many of us struggle just to stay afloat. Realizing what different positive emotions you might have encountered during your day, maybe without even recognizing them, is a good starting point towards the upward spiral we are all expected to know how to get on.
My next Post will be about one positive emotion I love to connect to creativity and crochet.