Sometimes I would rather be knitting, but if I can't be knitting, at least I can be wearing something that I knit. These mitts have seen a number of hours at the keyboard recently.
Most of the knitters I know would agree that knitting offers some form of therapy. I have often found it to be a soothing break from work, to take out my "office knitting" and do a few rows. The therapeutic benefit of knitting (and crochet and cross-stitch) is being studied by a group in Bath, England. Betsan Corkhill has a website called Stitchlinks that is very interesting. She runs a clinic in which her clients use knitting or stitching to help them cope with chronic pain. She's also convinced nearby neuroscientists to examine the impact of knitting on brain function. I'm especially intrigued by the evidence for improved memory.
I sometimes will use knitting as a means to cope with frustration. I'm making another pair of mitts for a friend who is experiencing some challenges. I can't help her, but I can make her a pair of mitts.