I was reading a thread on Ravelry this morning and came across a link to a very interesting post about procrastination. As I read the article, I realize that I do that – to some extent. I don’t write the list the author suggests, but I do jump from one task to avoid doing another – like doing the dishes instead of working on the custom order I need to knit, for example.
Sometimes, I call it stepping away from the wall. It’s something like this: when you have a problem, you tend to focus on it (and get too close to it). By taking a few steps back from the problem (the wall), you can see the whole picture and find ways to get to the other side.
I bring this subject up today because I’ve been struggling with a design (and yes, I’ve knit it already and did work. My problem began when I tried to make it better looking) and think I’ve reached this virtual wall, where I see no way out.
I usually work exclusively on one design, but this time I decided to try another idea…and hit yet another wall. Sigh. So now I’m stuck on two different designs (and counting). My solution was to knit a little doily – which led me to yet another idea for another design.
I don’t want this year to be like the last one. A series of shiny objects distracted me from designing and in the end I had only one new pattern to show for it. This year started better and I already have one pattern being test knit. Since the testing was going on so smoothly, I decided to work on the next one, but I’m beginning to wonder if I should put the new one in time-out and work on something else.
Sometimes, it feels like procrastination, but in reality, it’s a design road-block; and the best way to deal with those (for me, at least) is to let them slip my mind for a few months.
One thing that I’ve done and seems to be helping me somewhat, is to write a list of ideas as they come to me. You see, up until a few months ago the ideas would come to my head and I’d get so afraid of forgetting them before I was able to put them to yarn, that I rushed through other ideas already on the needles. That led to designs that could be better, if only I came across that nifty solution before I pushed the publish button.
Now, with the list, I can start working on the idea and if it isn’t coming out exactly like I see in my head, I can stop it and keep on adding notes until I can come up with something that solves my design problem.
Some ideas, though, come so loud that I have to put everything else down and work on them already. The idea I had while knitting the doily is beginning to sound like one of those. As I write this post, I can see other parts of the shawl coming together in my head. I’m afraid that as soon as I finish writing this entry, I’ll pick yarn and needles and try it out ;P.