1. Don't be afraid to go down that road into the dark. Whether it's learning to knit cables, or socks, or lace, or buying a business or doing a knitting cruise or learning to talk and walk and knit after a stroke, it is worth it. You'll regret not having tried.
2. Be patient. Men's crewneck sweaters don't knit themselves, you know. Give it time. I have a plan to knit a catnip mouse eachweek, and they are piling up! If you do a little at a time, it will grow.
3. Work on your knitting a little bit every day. This ties in with #2. You won't make much progress doing just a little every day, but it's still progress. It may only be 1/16 of an inch to you, but it's still something! and some days you may knit more. I find that if I say, "I don't feel like knitting today (or writing or paying bills or cleaning), I'll just do a little bit so I can say I've done something," then whamo! Once I started, I did a whole bunch. Or not. But the possibilities are there. Give it a try.
4. Use the best stuff available; it will be worth it. I use Lily Sugar'n Cream yarn to make dish cloths and wash cloths. It's the best thing out there for the purpose. Whether you use Lion Brand or Buffalo Gold, use the best you can afford to make the thing you want to. The time you spend knitting is valued, and what you use to knit with should make it pleasant. Don't pinch pennies!
5. Use the best tools you can afford, too. (This kinda goes with #4.) Get a swift and ball wider that don't make you nuts using them (mine do not). Get or make a wooly board. Use good needles; those old pink plastic ones that your Grandma used might have sentimental value, but they probably are one of the reasons no one else in the family wanted them. I personally collect needles, but my favorite ones to work on are Signature Needle Arts needles. I only have sizes 4, 5, and 8, (14" length, stilleto tip, teardrop end cap for those of you wondering), and a set of five size 1 double-pointed needles, which I cannot find anywhere but they're somewhere in the house, and a set of five size 2 double-pointed needles that I lent to Lynne. My hope is to get more of them every chance I get, but they are pricey. I like well-made wooden needles too; my favorites are the maple needles hand-turned by Al Mather. Anyone have a set of size 8, by the way? I broke one, and Al doesn't make them anymore.
6. Sometimes, putting your knitting down is a good idea. Throwing it in the garbage along with the needles and pattern is not a good idea; I have done this. (I did go back and fish out the needles, though.) Throwing it across the room and hitting a cat with it will only exacerbate the problem. Trust me. You will always encounter problems with your knitting, and most of them will be stupid-assed problems, things you did because of not counting right or not reading the DIRECTIONS right (which I found out recently), but just put it down. I know you want to work on it. Trust me, it will seem a lot better later. That is why you need to have two projects going at the same time.
7. If you have a big, boring project and you have to do it, make it fun. That may mean adding a stitch pattern to it, but if that's not allowed, listen to some good music. It's a good reason to buy more music, anyway! Or you can listen for free, via Spotify or Last.fm or MOG.com. Listen to a good music podcast; I listen to The Roadhouse podcast every week, but that's a blues podcast. A movie marathon may be called for; I like Star Wars, and Harry Potter, and The Lord of the Rings. Go nuts! Your boring project will have a big start in no time. If you have a different movie marathon each week, you'll probably finish it!
8. Knit with other people and in different situations. If you always knit at home on the couch, you really will turn into a couch potato. Knit in a bar or on a boat or knit on safari. Knitting with other people is a lot more entertaining than the life of a couch potato. You might learn something new, and you might teach somebody something, too!
9. Have a stash of yarn, and don't be ashamed that you have it. Having yarn around keeps you calm. You can plan your next project with it, or you can just stare at it. Don't you have some yarn that is just too good to knit? I have a SABLE stash (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy), it fills a whole room, and then some. It is in geological layers. I can remember all the good times I had at different yarn shops, at different shows, the different people I met and the things I did. It's like a scrapbook, but it's made of yarn. Actually, that's precisely why I won't use some of it. It holds too many good memories.
10. I knit because it's a way of making my love concrete. I knit for a new baby, for a friend who lost everything in a house fire, for someone who has lost a child, for friends and family who helped me get through what I had to get through. I knit for my husband because he asked me to, and that's so cool. I knit for cats. I knit for myself, too. I like to make things by hand, and I choose to knit, and I value hand-made things from other people. Knitting is good.