(a psychology definition)
an intense focus on an activity accompanied
by increased creativity and near-ecstatic feelings
The other day in my psychology class we briefly talked about this while discussing motivation and goals. You may recognize this phenomenon as when an athlete gets “in the zone” or a musician or artist gets lost in their work.
My text book says, “people achieve this state of mind when absorbed by some problem or activity that makes them lose track of time and become oblivious to events around them.”
Seriously, I have to admit I am totally jealous of people that have such a deep passion or purpose that they experience this amazing feeling of being one with their craft. I think it’s safe to say I do not have this.
It did get me thinking about yoga and how this description of “flow” really is the ultimate goal of yoga. I’ve always been attracted to yoga for the physical benefits, but in my yoga teacher training I learned a lot about the mental and spiritual benefits of yoga (I always hesitate to use the word spiritual because most people associate it with religion and yoga is NOT a religion).
If you’ve been reading Live, Run, Grow for awhile, you may remember when I started my teacher training I posted this graphic:
This is really how I felt doing yoga. My body was going through the motions, but my mind was making my grocery list.
While I can’t claim to have experienced the mystical “flow”, I’ve managed to calm my mind a bit while practicing and now I feel a bit more like this:
The beautiful coincidence (or not a coincidence?) is that the style of yoga I practice which links fluid movement with breath is often called Vinyasa Flow!
Ever hear of a “runner’s high”?? Same thing! (And also something I have yet to experience.)
I definitely don’t get lost and “lose track of time” while running, but I haven’t given up yet. I’ve made progress with working towards “flow” in yoga and maybe one day it’ll come with running too!
Have you experienced “flow” or “Runner’s High”?
Do you think if this doesn’t come naturally
it’s something you can practice or learn?