When I was 16, my school hosted a talent show that I was more than eager to sign up for. I learned the choreography of a K-pop song before K-pop was even a thing.
As part of the church choir and glee club, I could have easily chosen to sing a song I knew by heart. But I wanted to push myself beyond what was comfortable and familiar to me.
It took me a few weeks of practice but I found myself thoroughly enjoying the process of learning how to dance. Even when I didn’t win in the end, I still felt a sense of pride and accomplishment for my performance.
I never knew it then, but during a certain point in the process, I entered a flow state of my own doing.
Go With the Flow
A flow state is a cognitive concept of complete immersion in an activity through intense focus, creative engagement, and the loss of the awareness of the self.
It was theorized by Hungarian-American psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi after he found that it was possible to persist at a task regardless of fatigue and hunger.
“A state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter.”
Imagine obtaining a single-minded focus that the world seemingly falls away. You develop autonomy over your time, your body, and your mind.
While this can lead to creativity, and prolonged productivity, the flow state highlights the importance of personal development through the process, and not the outcomes.
The flow state believes that results are only as good as the lessons and growth you’ve acquired from it. Otherwise, the results don’t really matter.
This makes the experiences intrinsically rewarding that replicating them is the only way to achieve a fully engaged and happy life.
Since flow appears to come with many benefits, how can you create spaces for flow to enter your daily life?