In the first step, strand 1 moves to the right over strand 2 and strand 3 moves over strand 4. You end up with the order below, 2 1 4 3 5. Note that 5 stayed where it was.
Next, move strand 4 over 1 and strand 5 over 3 to the left. Strand 2 stays where it is.
Then, go back to the left side. Strand 1 goes to the right over 5 and strand 2 goes to the right over 4.
Now, back again from the right, 5 goes over 2 and 3 goes over 1. And, so on.
Here is the numerical pattern:
1 2 3 4 5
2 1 4 3 5
2 4 1 5 3
4 2 5 1 3
4 5 2 3 1
5 4 3 2 1
5 3 4 1 2
3 5 1 4 2
. . .
Do you see how each number moves across the pattern diagonally and then hangs out at the edge for two turns and moves back the other direction? Look at one number, the 1, for example, you can see how it is moving to the right with each step and then stays to the right for 1 step and then moves back again. Each strand goes through this process. You could use tape to label each strand and follow this pattern if that helps you.
Or, if you are more visual – try this. My mantra while I do this is two to the left, two to the right, two to the left, two to the right. See the strand farthest-most to the right, and the strand in the middle? I’ve put arrows on them. These two go to the left, over the adjacent strand. The strand farthest to the left, stays where it is.
Then, you do the same on the opposite side. The strand to the farthest most left and the middle strand each move over one strand to the right. The farthest right strand stays where it is.
You repeat that over and over. The two with the arrows move to the left.
Then, move the two with the arrows to the right.
Continue with the braid until you get to an inch or so past desired length.