New Things. We seek new things, yet we are surprisingly resistant to them. We are often resistant in ways we might not even be aware of. There is nothing wrong with resistance, except if it gets in your way of experiencing things that might improve your life!
James Bartlett told me that things that were different would not be popular years ago with respect to my pattern format, and I guess I was resistant to the idea that what I was doing would not be accepted. But now I see how wrong I was! 🤔
I’ve written knitting patterns the way I want them to be written for over 20 years. These are excellent patterns, but there is always resistance to them. I have written a lot about why I do what I do (including Action charts, describe techniques within the pattern, stack stitch patterns, provide written and charted instructions, have shaping charts, use complete sentence, include links and hyperlinks) and this is not me, in any way, throwing in the towel.
In looking at “the research” on why we have so much resistance to change I quickly realized that it is completely logical that knitters would have a problem with my patterns (it is excellent to be a Libra — I can always see both sides!).
Of course I have an agenda:
- Spend less of my time writing patterns (but keeping them full of good stuff).
- Continue to create beautiful things.
- Refine the use of Pattern Calculators.
- Create patterns that fit more people better.
- Get knitters and designers on board to using and creating a different kind of knitting pattern that works at Any Size. Any Gauge.
- Sell more stuff.
Resistance to New Things
It is a little difficult to discuss how I am creating the perfect storm of resistance without getting defensive, but I’ll resist that if you keep reading.
Here is a list of reasons we resist change:
- Loss of Control. Interesting how we need it, but never really have it.
- Uncertainty. Despite all evidence to the contrary we actually want things to be as they have been.
- Surprise! We do not like them!
- Everything Seems Different. Lack of familiarity is unsettling.
- Loss of Face. Not understanding, doing, etc. might make us look other than we wish to appear.
- Concerns about Competence. Questioning if we are not as skilled (or whatever) as we thought.
- More Work. New means we have to spend time learning.
- Ripple Effects. What else will have to change?
- Past Resentments. Trying new things may not have been fully successful or satisfying.
- Real Threats. You might not like the result or you may not be up to the task.
I think I kind of love new things, but I might be wrong. Certain types of new things can cause my resistance. I have to do a lot of self-talking to get myself to do anything other than what I am accustomed to doing with my time. I have a lot of routines that help me get things done, and it can be unnerving and time consuming to need to change them.
Looking at My Resistance
How I react:
I want to work on my projects, to focus on what matters to me, to knit, not promote. I want to be seen and understood, but that doesn’t seem to happen as much as I want. My efforts are correct, but are not reaping the rewards I want.
I create nice posts. Interacting isn’t really what I want to do, but I try to respond to comments, be a little chatty, and open, but scrolling and finding other stuff doesn’t feel all that compelling. I do most of my social media interaction at the end of the day. Something must be wrong with social media.
How I react:
I have to use these tools that I cannot control, that are purposely opaque, and that are designed for people who are much more interested in promotion and self promotion than I am.
Social Media is hardly a new thing, but after initial resistance, followed by grudging acceptance, social media continues confounds me. I use it and I think I post good content, but I have not been able to figure out how to get the kind of audience engagement I want. I resented the need to use it at the outset, and I haven’t completely let that go!
Which resistance factors am I exhibiting? Loss of control is a given. Apparently I am still uncertain. There are apparently some concerns about competence and possible loss of face. Definitely, it is more work. There are ripple effects. I have past resentments about time in vs. value out.
What Creates Resistance to Jill Wolcott Knits Patterns?
You are looking at that thing you want to make, and are thinking, that looks like it is within your skill set (or you anticipate that it is conquerable). You decide to buy the pattern.
You open the download and it is not what you expected and you paid a lot for it. It doesn’t look like other patterns you have used in the past. There is talk of a spread sheet. You do not like spreadsheets. Something must be wrong. If you are like me, some colorful language may need to be deployed.
What you see:
You just wanted to knit. Now you have to figure this out. Boo. Hiss. Maybe you will send me a message expressing your frustration. Or maybe post an unhappy comment on Ravelry, or elsewhere on social media. You still don’t feel better, and if I got the message, I’m not feeling good either. You are not making that thing that you wanted to make.
Fair. Well, I hope that you reach out to me for help, but it is unlikely.
A lot of different phrasing is used. Rather than years of knitting experience, it might be number of projects, types of projects. The jist is:
This is not what I expected and that doesn’t make me comfortable. Therefore, there must be something wrong with Jill Wolcott / the pattern / the Jill Wolcott Knits view of the world.
Which resistance factors are being shown by our mythical pattern purchaser? Loss of control is a given. There is uncertainty and so much surprise because everything seems different. Being unsettled will raise concerns about competence and perhaps loss of face. There is more work in doing something new and there may be ripple effects. The purchaser may have past resentments about time in vs. value out based on other pattern purchases. They may waste yarn or time.
How Can I Overcome Resistance to Jill Wolcott Knits Patterns?
I need to address this in a separate post!