Time flies when you're having fun

Time flies when you’re having fun!

The state of Flow

Have you ever been so absorbed in an activity you love that the outside world seems to disappear? For example, playing sport, listening to music or painting a picture, so ‘in the zone’, that before you know it time has completely passed you by. If so, then you have been in the state of Flow. Positive psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi offers the definition of Flow as ‘being completely involved in an activity for its own sake. The ego falls away…Your whole being is involved…’

Why is a Flow state important?

Flow is fascinating to positive psychologists who study motivation, creativity, attention and emotions because of its role in aiding humans to live a meaningful life. Flow is related to lower self-consciousness and a sense of reward, both which point towards an increased level of happiness.

Examining the neuroscience behind Flow, we find that the area of the brain associated with self-consciousness and self-talk is given a rest during Flow, allowing us to enter an increased creative and relaxed state. This ability to order our conscious minds gives us a sense of control over our inner happiness.

How to enter a Flow state

There are many ways in which you can enter a state of Flow. Importantly, what works is subjective to the individual. If you don’t enjoy running, jogging around your local park is not going to get you there. Instead, you must simply do what you love doing. By reaching our goals we are much more likely to be happy, fulfilled and experience a higher level of wellbeing. 

Solution focused hypnotherapy focuses on individual client goals, strengths and motivations and how to build on them. During trance a client can relax, calm down the inner self talk, bring their body and mind together, and focus on the goals and the innate skills they can use to achieve their goals.

Ruth Berry – Mind Health

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