What is one of the ingredients to a life worth living? Do we feel really happy? Positive psychologists, most notably Dr. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Ph.D.–argue that your ability to enter the flow state on a regular basis is a key component of happiness.
By learning how to enter the state of flow you can increase your productivity, become more creative, and happier, all at the same time.
What does it mean to enter the flow state?
Flow, is a state of mind you achieve when you’re fully immersed in a task, forgetting about the outside world.
In a state of Flow, you:
- are completely focused on the task at hand;
- lose track of time;
- feel happy and in control;
- become creative and productive, and
- you begin to create a new reality creating flow and forgetting about the world around you.
You can learn more about Dr Mihaly’s definition of Flow State in the following Ted talk video.
Flow, the Secret to Happiness
Although it takes practice, achieving flow state is a skill that can be learned.
Here are 7 Ways to Enter the Flow State:
Find your Passion
It is hard to be in flow when you are performing a task you are not passionate about or have trouble finding value from it.
Make it challenging but possible
It is hard to stay motivated when it becomes too easy. Pick something that is challenging and stretches your abilities.
Develop your skills in order to be able to meet the challenge
It needs to be challenging so your mind doesn’t wander but you also need to be able to develop the required skills to accomplish the task.
Set clear goals
Be very clear on what you want to achieve. What does success look like?
Clear away distractions
It is hard to enter flow with continuous distractions blocking your productivity. Put your phone on silent and shut off notifications. You don’t want anything to take your attention away from the task that you’re performing; if your concentration is broken, you’re going to exit the state of flow.
Learn to focus on the task for as long as possible
We have become so used to the many distractions that it can be difficult to stay focused. It is important to train your mind to focus on the immediate task at hand.
Practice and then practice some more
Learning to enter into flow takes time. To shut your mind to everything except what you are focusing on is a skill. It will take practice. Set yourself a starting objective of focusing on your current task for 20 min and work from there. Use the Pomodoro technique to help you.
Have you ever entered a state of flow? Was it related to work or a personal hobby?
Our lives can get pretty hectic and it can be easy to get lost in our actions. When we are so focused on what is ahead, we forget to pause, reflect and find ways to energize our minds. These 5-minute motivation posts are meant to give you that recharge. The goal is to give you a 5-minute Vitamin for your mind through quotes, posts and videos. It is also meant to challenge your thinking and inspire you to take action.
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