What is Flow?

5 minutes to read
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“Time slows down. Self vanishes. Action and awareness merge. Welcome to flow.” ~ Steven Kotler

What is Flow?

Flow, often called “being in the zone,” is a psychological state of complete immersion and focused engagement in an activity.

The term “Flow” was coined by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, who extensively studied the concept.

In a state of flow, individuals experience a deep sense of enjoyment and lose track of time and external distractions. They become fully absorbed in the present moment, feeling energized, focused, and in control of their actions.

Flow is often associated with optimal performance and enhanced creativity.

Characteristics of Flow

Characteristics of flow include:

1. Clear Goals

Flow occurs when individuals have clear, attainable goals that provide direction and purpose for their actions.

2. Concentration and Focus

Flow requires intense concentration and focused attention on the task at hand. As this occurs, individuals are fully engaged, and their awareness is centered on the present moment.

3. Loss of Self-Consciousness

In the state of flow, individuals experience a diminished sense of self-awareness. They become fully absorbed in the activity, and the sense of time and ego fades away.

4. Sense of Control

Flow is characterized by a feeling of being in control of one’s actions and having the necessary skills to meet the challenges of the task.

The level of challenge matches the individual’s skill level, creating a sense of balance and avoiding feelings of boredom or anxiety.

5. Immediate Feedback

Flow is often facilitated by receiving immediate feedback on performance. This allows individuals to adjust their actions in real-time and maintain their focus and engagement.

6. Altered Perception of Time

While in flow, individuals often experience a distorted sense of time. Hours can feel like minutes as they become fully absorbed in the activity.

Flow can be experienced in various activities, such as sports, creative pursuits (like painting or playing an instrument), writing, or even during work tasks.

Flow is also associated with increased happiness, motivation, and overall well-being.

Next Steps to Achieving A Flow State

Achieving flow requires finding a balance between the challenge level of the task and one’s skill set.

If the task is too easy, it can lead to boredom, while if it’s too complicated, it can result in anxiety.

Engaging in activities that provide a moderate level of challenge and allow for skill development can increase the likelihood of experiencing flow.

Our team at Tiger Medical has the experience, clinical skills, and coaching acumen to help you achieve states of flow regularly and accomplish more work in less time.

To talk to one of our professionals, click here to schedule your call!

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