Here we are, entering year 42. The last year has been a year of exponential growth, joy, and inevitable pain. My personal life has gone through dramatic changes. I’ve tested the limits of my physical body and thus worked my way through injury. I’ve learned. I’ve learned how to learn. I have an instinctual feeling that I am on the correct trajectory.
(I also need to rant. There is no f#cking way I am 42? I feel better than I ever have been. I’m healthier, more active, and better mentally equipped! This age number is really a thorn in my side. I feel actual anger when I think about it! What have I been doing to waste all of this time and arrive now to some semblance of a good place?)
In my last update, I updated the tenets to my manifesto as follows…
- Connect & Engage in Relationships
- Be Authentic Without Sacrifice
- Accept Love With Grace
- Think Deeply
- Go Public
Here is where I sit currently.
At this point, we know what Flow is and understand the importance of the stages of the Flow Cycle. (If not, click here.) Now, let’s look at what TRIGGERS flow.
The triggers exist in two categories, internal and external. There are twelve individual flow triggers, six in each category.
Flow triggers work by either increasing neurochemicals that cause flow or by lessening the cognitive load allowing for focus3. Recall that the flow state activation hinges on focus and attention
As the second installment in our Flow Series, we look at the Flow Cycle, its function, and potential in our lives.
There are four stages in the Flow Cycle – struggle, release, flow, and recovery. All are equally important in achieving the third stage and the goal of the cycle, Flow. The Flow definition is an optimal state of consciousness where we feel our best and perform our best. The aim here is to create a sense of intense engagement in our lives, enhancing a sense of meaning, purpose, and well-being.
How is it May, already?
In July of last year, I posted My 40’s Manifesto, my intention to experience a better decade compared to my 20’s and my 30s. I have established the following ideas as guideposts.
- Work on connection
- Be authentic
- Accept love
- Think deeply
- Engage in relationships
It is part of our existence. One third of Americans are in chronic pain. What is the meaning of pain?
Pain and suffering are part of the human condition – we all experience them. While it’s obvious that pain is meant to protect us from destroying our body (as is the case with physical pain) or to avoid potentially threatening situations (in the case of emotional pain). Many report that peace can be found through the crucible of suffering. This idea is embedded in our culture, religions, and in modern philosophy. At a deeper level, pain can be heavily influenced by our perceptions and expectations. To many, pain may define their lives.
It’s your mind, right? Use it the way you want to use it!
Our minds are wondrous, complicated, and not fully understood. Currently, science is making some large leaps in the understanding of its functioning. By extension, how we can make it work the way we want. Many of us struggle with lack of motivation, energy, and/or chronic stress, anxiety, and depression. Effects of these experiences range from sleeplessness and high blood pressure to racing thoughts and the inability to fully function to our potential. Scientists and researchers seek to find the physical root of these experiences to better understand why and how they occur.
Note that some of these experiences are very serious and should be treated as such. For many of us, there is much we can do to make our minds work for us.