With the book launch for Death Drops: A Natural Remedies Mystery happening next month (Feb. 21st) and the PR and marketing and blogging and tweeting that I need to do daily and a re-write for book number 2 in the series looming, and well, life, I’m feeling a little stressed (good stress – I’m very grateful for all these wonderful opportunities but still…) However, I know what the answer is: slow down.
Alternative medicine provides some of the best ways to do this. Even just taking a deep breath and saying, “I am breathing in. I know that I am breathing in” and exhaling, “I am breathing out. I know that I am breathing out,” as Thich Nhat Hanh author of You Are Here, says, can improve one’s outlook by releasing stress.
But did you know that hobbies like knitting, painting, sculpting, crocheting or quilting can also help you slow down? That’s because slow hobbies help you cultivate the lost art of focus, concentration and being in the moment. “Slow hobbies have a meditative quality to them and a calming effect that goes beyond the act itself,” says Carl Honore, author of In Praise of Slowness.
In fact, according to the Craft Yarn Council of America research 64% of knitters and crocheters use these crafts to help them reduce stress and relax. Studies show that the rhythmic, repetitive dance of the needles can lower heart rate and blood pressure, lulling the knitter into a peaceful state.
I’ve noticed that just “reading” about hobbies is relaxing. For example, I feel more peaceful when I’m reading Laura Child’s Tea Shop Mysteries, Anne Canadeo’s Black Sheep Knitters series and Betty Hechtman’s crocheting mysteries. I can’t wait to dive into all the books of my fellow Killer Hobbies (www.killerhobbies.blogspot.com) blogging sisters and mellow out.
You may even find your new hobby in a cozy mystery. Hobbies in cozies range from scrapbooking to quilting, from knitting and embroidery to cooking. Choose a hobby that you are really interested in, that you enjoy and that you can build a relationship with over time. You’ll be less stressed and happier and you’ll also enjoy your cozy mysteries even more!
Death Drops: A Natural Remedies Mystery (Gallery Books/S & S) will be published on Feb. 21st and is available for pre-order on www.amazon.com.read more