19 Patterns to Calm Deja Poo of the Mind

6 Crochet Textured Blankets
Keep It Free with Mikey
Keep It Free with Mikey

Crochet patterns can be meditative to some degree and can quiet the mind of repetitive self-destructive thoughts. It’s like “Deja Poo, you’ve heard that crap before and it’s circling your mind over and over and over.”

Many of us can circle in our minds scenarios and situations we have faced or tough decisions we will be facing. For myself, I can talk myself into self-harm and into beliefs or feelings that aren’t really there. As much as people can put thoughts into my head on how I am supposed to act, talk, walk and live, people like me have the ability to self-doubt and devalue ourselves beyond measure. It’s a vicious cycle and I have gone beyond the line in self-harm a few times.

I think it’s laughable that we humans consider ourselves civilized as when someone is struggling, we are idle and let someone bury themselves. It’s disgusting but, though I have a large community following, I too, feel weak in the knees and buckle but tend to keep it off social media. What is silent can be more damaging.

The Distraction

Become a Crochet Designer
Become a Crochet Designer

In designs, part of the texture experience isn’t about visual eye candy that makes me wet my whistle. It’s about the strategy to silence the self-harming tendencies I have.

The idea of counting takes away the lingering thoughts of over-processing crap in my mind that is lingering in the deep corners. I cannot fester on a relationship or people issues when I am distracted by the conceptual design of a pattern.

If the pattern is too repetitive, I can sink into myself and lose myself in a sinkhole of endless possibilities of existent and made-up scenarios. I cannot be alone in this… please tell me I am not alone.

Some people can live rent-free in my head and crochet for me is the distraction I need to issue an eviction notice and free myself from the chains of bondage I feel.

The Ultimate Goal

Crochet Happy Holiday Throw
Crochet Happy Holiday Throw

Find patterns where I can bury myself into a pattern to feel the personal milestones of joy that I make for myself. Small moments of joy of self accomplishments that I need to propel myself forward.

The Crochet Happy Holiday Throw was an example of a project that was intentionally chosen, though I haven’t admitted this before, that was a mind silencer.

In my tutorial example, I did a swatch example of the blues. It took away the Christmas look from the original pattern. I felt so proud of it. While I just did a small baby blanket size with just doing the sequence once with a border. I felt joy.

Crochet Happy Holiday Tutorial Sample
Crochet Happy Holiday Tutorial Sample
Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: Crochet Happy Holiday Throw

Videos are available to assist you.

Better Together Afghan

Crochet Better Together Afghan - Jeanne Solo Version
Crochet Better Together Afghan – Jeanne Solo Version

The Better Together Afghan designed by Jeanne and me is example where two minds are trying to find inner peace.

We both crocheted our collaborative design in the colours we loved. Blue was important for Jeanne and is a colour she wears most often. It brings her joy.

We both used stitches in this design that meant something for each of us. The Catherine Wheel Stitch was one of the first concepts I learned as a teenager beyond regular double crochet. Jeanne was playing with the textures of the Alpine Stitch. It was tough to collaborate so we both felt comfortable with the design.

I learned from Jeanne and maybe she did from me as well. It’s a stitching journey.

Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: Crochet Better Together Afghan

Tutorials are available to self-assist.

4 Crochet Stitch Samplers

crochet sampler blanket
crochet sampler blanket

The 4 designs for the Crochet Sampler Afghans are designs I wish to crochet in the future. Two of them I have already done, the other two are on my high priority list.

The one on the upper right corner is something that has 14 individual designs within the sampler. There are 14 opportunities to learn more.

You will find the upper left and bottom right are already filmed and ready for those who need extra help.

Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: Crochet 4 Stitch Sampler Designs

The Christmas Puzzle Along

Crochet Christmas Puzzle Finale
Crochet Christmas Puzzle Finale

I found the Christmas Puzzle Along with the Rudolf, Santa and Reindeer Tissue Box covers to be mini joyful moments and then nice self-gratifying accomplishments in the end.

I watched the characters take shape as I crocheted these. They each had their own personality traits. We could have made each character even more customized with mittens, clothing, chair and more.

I was glad to finish them but enjoyed the stitching journey all the same. I gave myself milestone goals throughout to keep myself motivated to continue.

Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: Crochet Puzzle Along

7 Textured Crochet Blankets

6 Crochet Textured Blankets
7 Crochet Textured Blankets

Textured Blankets distract me from the evil mind’s eye of destructive thoughts.

While some of the blankets have a simple repeat, it’s still the thought of ensuring you pay somewhat attention to the pattern.

When starting a new row, you split-second evaluate where you are and your next step. This will stop a mid-thought in its tracks and maybe something else will start up after the thought. I find it very useful.

Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: 7 Textured Crochet Blankets

5 Crochet Textured Hats

5 Crochet Textured Hats
5 Crochet Textured Hats

Like the textured blankets, crochet textured hats can give you inner peace as well but with timelines much faster than a full-size afghan.

With a bit of counting and repetitive stitch counts, you can see the texture forming in front of your eyes. Feeling gratitude mid-project in watching this materialize.

Yarnspirations Patterns
Free Pattern: 5 Textured Hat Patterns

Suicide Prevention Line

Suicide Help Lines
Suicide Help Lines

If you ever need help, remember there are people to call. I’m not the right person to confide in myself, as like many, I’m clinging on some days myself.

For you in the USA, you can reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Line should ever fall too deep. They can be reached at 1-800-273-8255.

For you in Canada, the Canada Suicide Prevention Service is available. They can be reached at 1-833-456-4566.

Speak to your family doctor should need a referral. I have sought counselling through my doctor a couple of times in needing help to see the light. I’m not ashamed to say I couldn’t do it on my own, but there are times, you feel all alone though surrounded by others.

I’m not advocating that crochet will cure your thoughts but for me, it’s a welcome distraction and has been used several times in my life to calm my inner thoughts down. You may have found the same.

You are welcome to share your stories in the comments of this blog if you have something that can give comfort or help to others.

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  1. Jane Leslie

    I love you, Mikey. Don’t ever change!

  2. Vonda

    I am 60 years old an just a few years ago , I finally realized that I was really great. Not greater than anyone else but great. I too still have self loathing and doubt cream up once in awhile but most of the time, I just keep it out. Maybe all of the years of knitting, crocheting and sewing has helped me keep the monsters at bay. Maybe realizing that we all are human and flawed helps me know that criticism from people in my life doesn’t mean anything because those critical of me are just as flawed as I am. I just analyze it and decide if it is something that I can do better or if I’m fine the way I am. Mostly I’m fine. Be the one who compliments and smile. Knitting, crocheting, and sewing make me feel so happy. I hope you feel happy too.

    • Mikey

      Yeah, through experience we do learn those lessons and it seems to me, you have life figured out. I love crochet as I can process information during quiet moments.

  3. Liberty

    Mikey you dreamboat! Your sharing, caring and doing attitude is just the thing for the deja poor! You share your story, care about other struggles, and are doing what you can for yourself and other. Well done Muffin!
    I have crocheted along with you on a few projects and always enjoy my results. You are patient and a pleasure to crochet with!
    I often just listen to you while I work on other things because of that. I do alot of 3d and heavily textured crochet projects to sweep all the nonsense, and relentless brain rubbish that tends to plauge people in our similar situations. Between you talking me through some sticky patterns, Jen Tyler challenging me with hers and Arnie and Carlos just talking has made life easier everyday!
    You are a great teacher and a beautiful human! Thanks for all the wonderful everythings! Always keep fighting!

  4. Robin

    Mikey, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your honest and courageous writing. I too crochet as an alternative to harming myself. I picked it up as a hobby when I was in a homeless shelter for homeless folks who needed prolonged medical care. I ended up there because I ended up in a wheelchair unable to even stand up without assistance after a botched suicide attempt. My condition only lasted three months after a five week hospital stay. Im happy to report I got back on my feet literally. Figuratively I’m still working the details out. But I’m not homeless anymore and I recently traded my TV for a 31 gallon tub of yarn. I’m only 43 and still have, I hope, a lot of life left in me. But I don’t think I’d have gotten here had it not been for the soothing salve that a hook and a skein brought to me. Much love my friend. You are not alone. It’s funny, I used to hate when people said that to me. “Yeah,” I thought, “until you call me or have lunch with me on a Sunday afternoon, you’re just full of crap.” So, if ever you or anyone who is going through this needs to know they’re not alone, I’ll sit and crochet with you, or crochet and listen while you talk if you’re not in the mood to create. [email protected]
    Ms. Robin

    • Naomi

      Super moved by your story. You are an example and an inspiration. God bless you for sharing and giving others hope. Be safe, healthy, happy and keep crocheting!

      • Deborah Kurek

        I too am a crocheter!!!!!!
        This art of yarn and hook with fingers is so calming. Thank you for your story and of course the beautiful inspiration ❤ for us fellow “hookers”!!!!!

    • Anne Welch.

      I can imagine the mental and physical pain you went through. My husband had a number of health problems, and because of Diabetes he ended up losing his legs below the knees. I had to take care of him unless he was in the hospital or a nursing home. He almost died several times because he was so sick. Despite mental health problems, he never once considered ending his life. He lived almost two years after the surgeries. If you ever need to talk, I’ll listen. You can contact me on Messenger or PM me on Instagram. God bless you.

  5. Nancy Dias

    Thank you for this article and for all those who have shared in the replies. I echo the same sentiment. I learned to crochet from my grandmother when I was 8 years old. I picked it up again about 18 years ago to help me quit smoking by keeping my hands busy. At the time I was trying to get pregnant. Now, I constantly crochet to be calm and get through the day. I also suffer major depression and traumatic stress from unforeseen circumstances that made coping with life unbearable. I took time off work and crocheted 14 or 15 blankets and gave them to each nephew, niece, brother and sister. I also made a couple if different ones for my kids. Made hats for my husband and now I learned to crochet slippers. I found not only peace but also joy, giving my labour of love to each of my family. The appreciation and love that I received made it even more joyful. I’m almost addicted to it as it keeps my mind calm and brings me joy.

  6. Wendy

    You are definitely not alone! I have had similar issues. Talk therapy and medication have helped me so much! My psychiatrist had to keep tweaking and trying new meds over a long period of time, but finally found the right combination and it’s changed my life for the better. Crochet helps to calm me too! You are a very talented and kind person. Don’t let that negative inner voice tell you otherwise. God loves you very much and will help you silence that voice. 🙂

  7. Linnea

    Crochet (and knitting) is therapeutic for me as my mind is quite active. I allow some instances much too much real estate in my mind at times which is detrimental. Grabbing up my yarncrafting (or whatever craft I’m doing) brings welcome relief and release. I find I am able to set destructive thoughts aside and Zen out by changing and praying. Thank you for sharing, Mikey. Prayers for your well being abound for you.

  8. Marion

    Throughout the pandemic i needed something to help me get through the days and months ahead. I fully gave my life over to JESUS. I dropped university and decided I deserve better because I wasn’t happy with my course of study. I prayed and prayed for help with my “deja-poo” and a hundred more problems I was having. He blessed me with a new job where I can more than afford things I want and need. Life still wasn’t smooth sailing… I’m still fighting anxiety and inferiority. I found inspiration to crochet from a gift my friend got from one of her friends. Since I started i feel so calm…like it’s the perfect distraction. The fullfillment from finishing a project is irreplaceable. I could write more but thanks for sharing your story you have a new subscriber😉.💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾

  9. Dar

    Thanks for your honest post! Every step we can take to normalize what most of us experience to some degree is a step forward. Crochet helps my anxiety and the stress of serious chronic diseases. As my body can’t do so much of the every day things everyone does without thinking crochet has been something I’ve excelled at. Thank Gd I found it, or it found me.

  10. A survivor of several suicide attempts and almost two decades in a black hole of depression, the only activity which helped was obsessive crocheting. At least I was able to use my aesthetic ability and my hands to turn out useful, fun, and special creations for family, friends, scores of babies. I believe in crochet more than in medication.

  11. Harriet

    I meditate by visualizing crochet stitches and designs before falling asleep. Sometimes I ask my mind to show me answers in a way I can understand in a dream. It has worked. I read about crochet techniques, even advanced ones I’ll never do. I love your blog, Mikey, and have learned and been inspired by you. I do this with knitting too. At 71, still healing, I create about 2 or 3 hours a day with long breaks in between. I miss my knitting group at the Senior Center (it’s closed because of covid). In the early morning hour I pray!

  12. Charlotte

    Thank you so much for this article. You are not alone. I struggle with depression, and crochet helps me. Recently, I have begun pushing myself to learn more than traditional, easier patterns. I will be trying some if them. The other thing is thank you for crochet, there are so very many articles about knitting, it is a joybto see one about crochet

  13. Nicole Watkins

    First I want to say thank you 😊for sharing this. I have always struggled with my mind, never shutting down and always on 100. I learned how to crochet when I was a little girl in girl scouts. But, I didn’t keep up with it. I started back crocheting 2 years ago and I have to say that was the best thing that I could ever do for myself. I tried several times to kill myself. And my therapist said that it was a reason for me to still be here. I didn’t understand what that was, but now I get it, I had to start loving myself again. And I did one minute, hour, and day at a time. Crochet calms me and my mind down. I also learned and taught myself how to knit. That right there was the most frustrating, and rewarding experience for me. I understand me so much better that me still being here is for a reason and purpose. I have 11 grandbabies and the 12th one is on the way. I am so blessed to be here and see them grow. 🙏and thank God every day. So just know that you are not alone, and life can be hard but know that you can get through anything. If you need help or just want someone to talk to please call the suicide help line. We all have a purpose.

    • Laura Lazar

      Thanks for all you offer, the world needs you.

  14. Stella

    I’ve used crocheting most of my adult life to calm me, slow my mind down from the gerbil wheel. Recently, I tried tapestry crocheting, and that finally gives me some relief from the “deja poo.” Thank you for one of the most appropriate descriptors ever and for making me feel not so alone.

  15. G. McC.

    Hi, Mikey! My therapist LOVED the first paragraph!

  16. Debbie

    Wonderful article! I have bipolar disorder and have been in the hospital for treatment. I then had Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. It was so helpful. I love your patterns and have done several. I also do a more detailed pattern when my deja poo kicks in. It likes to flair up at night. Grateful for all the YouTube videos and patterns. Your laugh is wonderful! Maya Angelou said if you must look back do so forgivingly (also of yourself), if you look forward do so prayerfully but it is best to be present in the present gratefully. Thoughts and emotions come and go we can choose our actions and reaching for help is strength.

    • Jane Leslie

      Beautiful, Debbie! Thank you for sharing Maya’s words. They mean so much! May you be blessed in all you do!

  17. Heather S

    Thank you. I usually have two projects going, one that requires more attention and one I can do that allows me to focus on virtual lectures while getting something done. I hadn’t realized until you put it into words the mental gremlin calming effects I gained from the patterns that require more attention. Thank you for putting this into words. It’s like being given permission when one needs self care and has a big to do list

  18. samirah Mujahid

    I have crocheted since I was 9yrs. Old I find that I still have a bit to learn. Does any one have some simple cardigan patterns; I can only wear cotton. I love making afghans. I like all of the patterns you show.i will donate next month. I am on a fixed income, after bills every thing is gone.

  19. AimeeGrace

    Thank you for sharing your struggles. I have been struggling for many years. Some days are better than others but the last three years have been really tough. Crochet has helped me calm down and focus on something beautiful and productive. When the pandemic first induced the lockdown I used your tutorial to make my first successful mandala. Thank you for what you do. Thank you for inspiring us. Keep it up and know that you are not alone in your struggles.

  20. Kathy

    I came across this right at the right time! You might have saved my life!! You put into words exactly how I feel. I need to pick myself up, dust the pitty party off and start a new project! Thank you!!😢

  21. Sue

    I came across this right at the right time! You might have saved my life!! You put into words exactly how I feel. I need to pick myself up, dust the pitty party off and start a new project! Thank you!!😢

  22. Katy Alexis

    Mikey, you’re one of the first crochet artists I ever watched on YouTube to help me learn. It’s special when someone you’ve “known” for so long opens up and shares something so personal, and I really appreciate that you did! I struggle with depression and anxiety. Crochet is definitely a way to distract myself and it’s great because it give my hands something to do besides grab junk food. It honestly never occurred to me to use patterns to help calm the mind and banish the Deja Poo! That’s brilliant! I know we’re just strangers to you, but you’re loved by so many who watch you! Thank you!!!

    • CrochetPostSharer

      Thank you for sharing and picking a mix of patterns with different levels of complexity and adding points like making a sampler into a baby blanket.

      Being self aware with mental health can be a very useful tool in understanding and living with whatever one faces. Thank you for sharing your experiences and thoughts with others.

      Have a great evening/day/week and take care

  23. Heather Dickson

    Thank you for your honesty. I wish we could be so honest about mental health in all areas of life, employers m, schools, neighborhoods etc. Though the stigma is fading on social media, there are still areas of life where it seems better to be quiet about it.

    Crocheting has saved me multiple times, through depression, my husbands affair and the ensuing aftermath, through troubles big and small. My dog also has been my saving grace. Even my kids know, when I’m back to “yarning” as they call it, they know Mom is gonna be ok.

  24. Hola se que hay personas que tienen un gran corazón y que gratuitamente enseñan a otras personas sus conocimientos para tejer es parte de mi desde pequeña y me a ayudado mucho en mi.entos de crisis como los que estamos pasando actualmente teje para mis hijos y nietos no vendo pues considero que este arte es y será un arte sublime hecho con el corazón

  25. Julie

    Wow! Thank you for being open and sharing some very personal stuff about yourself. As someone who has struggled emotionally all my life, I feel proud of you for your crocheting and web page accomplishments and having the courage to be open about your personal struggles. You give me hope:) Thank you

  26. Michele Stevenson

    Thank you for sharing so intimately about your inner struggles….I too understand the power of crochet to distract my mind from destructive thoughts. I have been crocheting scarves for those in need. It’s a wonderful way to use yarn that I’ve had for years but never really had enough of to do a big project. The satisfaction of knowing my simple stitches are going to a person whom will benefit, helps to calm my mind.
    I love watching your YouTube channel and have found your instructions easy to follow and so very helpful.
    Please take care and know you ARE NOT ALONE 🙂

  27. Your work is beautiful and your designs wonderful. Never forget what an inspiration you are to others. But if that’s too much of a burden, never forget how special you are for just being.
    Crochet has helped me through the years. My babysitter taught me to crochet when I was 8 and I’ve never stopped. It brought me extra income when I needed it (and still does). It allowed me to make wonderful handmade gifts for others when I was short on money. And it has gotten me thru very tough times. When my baby died over 20 years ago and all I could do was breathe that next breath, take that next step, and live that next minute; I would crochet that next stitch and slowly, slowly I survived and thrived.
    Now when I face stress I find the most complicated pattern I can and concentrating on it calms the monkey mind and helps me work out a solution.
    Thanks for sharing your story. Crochet onward!

  28. Terri

    Thank you for listing the help lines. And sharing your personal struggles.
    I hope the mental health care is more readily available in Canada than it is here in the USA!

  29. Krystin Wells

    Thank you for helping me learn how to calm my mind.

  30. Sharon Annable

    I am using crochet for that very reason right now. I lost my cat and my husband within four months of each other last year; and then I lost my job in December. So, as a new widow with no income, the stress has been, shall I say, a bit over the top. Some days crocheting is the only thing that gets me out of bed. You are not alone!

  31. Dayle

    I too find crochet a helpful tool in managing my mental health. Both to keep out the intrusive deja poo (I love that expression btw!) and to reflect and process unsettled thoughts. I guess crochet is a little like functional meditation for me. And I totally agree with needing to keep the projects challenging enough not to zone out. I always intersperse bigger pieces with small fun bits. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experience. Cheers!

  32. Dawn

    Today is a low day for me, so I have been scrolling through patterns, trying to find things that remind me of happy memories…citrus colors used in kitchen dishcloths, and coasters and doilies like my great-grandmother used to make using cotton string, puffy mittens, and stocking caps – the kind that have the long tail on them that you can wrap around your neck like a scarf. It worked for me today!

  33. Terrie Faria

    Well said, Mikey! I buy yarn, bringing in color to my world, patterns of course!

    In a slump, 2 row repeat is my beat!

    Thank So Much for all you do, understand!

    hugs love

  34. Kelly

    You are not alone! Crocheting has also helped me push away negative thoughts. When you have to focus on what’s next on your project your mind is not thinking those thoughts that live rent free in your head.

    • Yvette Catanzaro

      Thank you so much for being teal and opening up about your mind and thoughts and how crochet is a great distraction. Now I know I’m not alone. I have projects going right now, just to keep my mind busy.

      I appreciate the fact that you shared something so personal. It’s helps people like me. I liked you before. Now I like and respect you that much more.

      Happy crochet!e

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