Unlock the Engaged Life: Embrace Challenges & Dive into FlowJun 08, 2023
Today I invite you on a journey towards an engaged life, where challenges become opportunities and the flow state takes you to new heights.
In this article, we'll explore the power of engagement, the magic of flow, and how embracing challenges can lead to a more fulfilling and effortless life.
In the winter of 2019, I embarked on a journey to start my own business, a lifelong dream of mine. Despite the advice of loved ones suggesting it wasn't the best time, I chose to dive in and face the challenges head-on. This seemingly difficult period would provide me with invaluable Soul Gold—"lessons, growth, and transformation."
Where in life can you lean into that challenging situation knowing there lies Soul Gold for you on the other side?
The Science of Engagement: Enter the Flow State
Renowned psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi introduced the concept of flow—a state of deep engagement and immersion in an activity. Research reveals that our happiest moments often occur when we face challenges and become fully absorbed in the present moment. In the flow state, time becomes irrelevant, and we tap into a neurochemical cocktail that brings immense joy and fulfillment.
When was the last time you experienced a deep flow state?
The Flow Cocktail: Biological Magic
When we enter a deep flow state, our brains release a powerful combination of neurochemicals. Dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, anandamide, and endorphins flood our system, creating a natural high. This cocktail of chemicals boosts our focus, ignites bliss, enhances creativity, and diminishes pain. In essence, it's pure magic that costs us nothing but engagement.
What was the last activity where you walked away feeling fully alive, and charged up about life?
The Engaged Life vs. the Easy Life
Rather than yearning for an easy life, we should shift our focus to an engaged life. It's in the engagement, in embracing challenges, that we find true fulfillment. Science confirms that living an engaged life leads to more flow experiences, effortless action, and increased happiness. So, let's redefine our desires and wish for an effortless life—a life where we take action and fully immerse ourselves in the present moment.
How can you reframe any challenging situations into something positive? Increasing your internal locus of control is a powerful way to build your inner resilience in demanding situations.
Understanding the Flow Cycle
To fully embrace the engaged life, we must comprehend the flow cycle. It consists of four essential phases: struggle, release, flow, and recovery. Each phase is crucial, and none can be skipped. Struggle sharpens our focus, release allows us to surrender to the task at hand, flow transports us into a state of effortless engagement, and recovery renews our energy and prepares us for future challenges.
Are you trying to skip any stages of the flow cycle? Do you distract yourself before you drop into flow? How often do you focus on recovery?
The engaged life is not about seeking an easy path—it's about embracing challenges, diving into the flow state, and experiencing the transformative power of engagement. By choosing an engaged life, we unlock a sense of fulfillment and effortless action. So, let's welcome challenges as opportunities for growth and learn to dance with the flow. Embrace the engaged life and watch as your world unfolds with infinite possibilities.
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