After last week’s motivation edition, are you ready to get on with some great work? This week, we’re looking at how you can harness your personal “state of flow” - the state of 100% focus on the task you’re currently doing - and use it to improve your performance while you work.
Psychologists refer to “flow” as the state of mind achieved when you’re completely immersed in a specific activity. Think of it as the ultra-focused mental nirvana that a top athlete strives to achieve before their big event, where all of their mental and physical skills are working in harmony. This description on About.com is a great resource for understanding the theory of flow and what it feels like to achieve it.
Want to achieve flow? Then you may have to start trying to live in the moment rather than worrying about the future. This article from Psychology Today explains how your natural performance can greatly improve when you’re not thinking about it - and suggests that savouring the moment and enjoying the task in hand is the best step towards entering your flow state.
People achieving their flow state often feel like time passes quicker than usual - as their focussed minds are occupied and are ignoring external distractions. So keep an eye out for those little things that can put you off your game like those Twitter alerts on your phone or that pop-up email notification, and use some creative ways to cut them out of your routine.
When you try something new, it’s impossible to achieve flow. You need your subconscious brain to take over when you’re in the zone, and it gets suppressed when you’re doing something that is unfamiliar. So don’t worry if you’re not feeling in the zone with everything that you do, but still aim to achieve it for those tasks that you know inside out.
As well as the links above, we’ve also added “Flow” and “Finding Flow” to our Great Business Books Pinterest board. Do you have a great method for getting into the zone? Hit us up on twitter or leave a comment and let us know. And have a great weekend!