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I started out with a hank of yarn that needed to be wound into a ball so I could knit with it.  To do that I had to either get out my yarn swift, or ask my husband to hold the hank taut for me so I could easily pull out the right strand and make the ball. I didn’t either of those things.  Instead I told myself: “The yarn is smooth. I can see where the end is. I can easily pull out the strand and make the ball.”

No. Not true. I deceived myself into making a tangled mess. With  time and patience, I was able salvage the situation.

In case you don’t knit, I will  explain. Yarn is sometimes sold in loosely tied hanks which are compact for shipping and storage purposes. These hanks have to be wound into balls in order to knit or crochet with them. If you try to just work from the hank you get a frustrating tangle that often can’t be salvaged.

Now, I’m an experienced knitter. I know this. So why didn’t I do the right thing?

Yes, I was tired and a bit stressed. That was part of it. I just wasn’t in the mood for the effort it would take to use the right process. And it seems that there were some lessons  to relearn. During the 3-hour de-tangling process, here’s what I re-learned. Maybe these lessons can save you from making an avoidable tangle!

  • Life includes tangly, messy and unpleasant times.
  • Sometimes those times are inevitable, but sometimes they’re of  my own making.
  • Staying calm and centered can help you untangle a knotted mess.
  • Remaining focused on the result you want can guide the process and help with staying patient.
  • Too tired to use the right process? Then get some rest before proceeding!