Time stands still, oblivious to your surroundings, the world is set to pause, fully absorbed on your task at hand, focused and concentrating, time disappears and you become completely lost.
Psychologists call these fully absorbent times, ‘flow states’ or a ‘heightened state of consciousness’. Times when our skills and competency are tested and our ability is just about sufficient to meet the challenge. Stretching us to our maximum limits. If the challenge is too easy, we become bored and lose interest. Too hard and we become anxious and want to give up. So flow can only be found under very specific conditions.
Perhaps you find yours completing a difficult crossword or playing a musical instrument. You might find it writing up a new project at work or giving a public speech. Learning a new skill like tiling your bathroom!
Regularly finding flow is incredibly important to achieving inner happiness because it leaves us feeling worthy, satisfied and pushes our personal growth by testing our limits. We ultimately feel fulfilled and proud of ourselves, which does wonders for our self-esteem.
Unfortunately, time spent scrolling social media sites, watching netflix and answering whataapps doesn’t count (as much as time disappears when you’re doing them!). In fact, too much time online starring at screens, diminishes our creativity levels which has a negative impact on both flow and happiness.
Where do you find your flow? What could you do to connect with it this weekend?
Additional reading –
Flow: The Psychology of Happiness by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi.