We’ve all experience moments of being in the zone. Time seems to stand still; we experience a sense of clarity, peace and euphoria. There is a merging of action and awareness.

States like these are attributed to a brain state called Transient Hypofrontality, or more commonly known as the state of flow.

Whereas we can’t will flow to happen, we can prime for it. We can bring ourselves closer to flow without knowing when we will experience it.

Priming for flow involves the intentional practice of the foundational attitudes of openness, courage, balanced-effort, focus, playfulness and non-attachment.

Non-attachment is a particularly interesting one. It is about moving away from our ordinary sense of self and relaxing our inner problem solver. It involves dropping our ego and attachment to outcome.

When you can let go of striving for a future outcome and immerse yourself fully in the now, you’re increasing your odds of slipping into flow.

Flow researcher Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi coined the term, “autotelic personality” to describe one who does things for their own sake, rather than in order to achieve some later external goal.

“When not preoccupied with our selves, we actually have a chance to expand the concept of who we are. Loss of self-consciousness can lead to self-transcendence, to a feeling that the boundaries of our being have been pushed forward.” ― Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Start by simply noticing the thinker and shift your attention to the senses present in the moment (sensing, hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling). Notice how this takes attention away from your thinking and creates space.

This can also prime us for a state of flow.

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