In the Flow

In my first post I used the words “in the flow” to describe how I was feeling (i.e. focused and motivated). I have since become aware that there is a discipline called “positive psychology”  and “flow”  is a term used In that discipline to describe a mental state “in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity.”

With just a little searching on the internet, I found numerous articles on flow: how it is defined, how to get in a state of flow, how flow makes you happy etc. My quick research indicates that Mihály Csíkszentmihályi, a positive psychologist, is a leader in this field. I watched an interesting Ted Talks in which he described the concept and explained why he think it happens.

I found the scientific discussions a bit hard to follow but, based on my personal experience, I believe that the state of flow exists. I think that I have experienced flow a couple of times during my life, including one prolonged period six month period in which I felt that I accomplished all of the goals that I had set out for myself at that time.

For me the feeling was elusive and not easy to re-capture but I remember it as being an enjoyable/happy feeling. So, I think learning a bit more about flow and, particularly, how to get in a state of flow, may be a good project for a new leaf.


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