Crafts and Focus

On a recent vacation, I attended several arts and crafts workshops offered by the resort. I used to do all sorts of painting, woodwork and sewing. I was reminded how much fun it is to relax and do something with your hands when your regular job is writing, reading and number-crunching. Although sadly both my parents have passed away, I thought about their legacy as I assembled my silver, gold and crystal bracelet. My mother was an artist and carefully nurtured my right brain tendencies with drama, dance and drawing classes. As an aerospace engineer, my father was one of the designers on an early U.S. weather satellite.

There is a certain quietude about creating a piece of work. Whether it’s a book or knitted sweater, the activity itself is soothing to the soul. There’s something else that should not be ignored. Concentrating on an activity that you enjoy ignites a sense of self-worth. According to famed psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the so-called “flow experience” can lead to happiness. Click to listen to his 2004 Ted Talk.

Many pundits have rightly observed that it’s great when you love what you do, whether at work or during your personal time.