Where do you Spend Your Day?- Everyday Flow

November 1, 2017 By Croft Edwards - No Comments
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Think back to 9 am this morning (or yesterday if you are an early riser).  Where were you?  Many of us would say at our desk or standing in line, maybe messing with our phone or even listening to our boss ramble on in a meeting.

But, what I am really asking is where you were in relation to flow.  What mood where you in, emotions were you experiencing?  Was it boredom? Were you worried about something that could happen?  Or, were you in control, happy and confident?  Better yet, were you in flow…so engrossed that you lost track of time with your focus only was the task at hand…so “in the groove” you were not even aware of you?  Was your answer an emotion you experience on a regular basis?  Do you experience more worry or more control on a daily basis?  Your answer has to do with flow.

 In his book Good Business, Leadership, Flow and the Making of Meaningour friend and the “Godfather of Flow,” Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, shares how flow is created.  Flow happens when we face situations that are great enough to be challenging and the skills needed are great enough to take on and overcome the challenges.  If you look at Csikszentmihalyi’s Map of Everyday Experience, you will see, flow (focused and happy) happens when the challenges equally as great as our skills.
Flow map of Everyday Experiences.001

 When challenges are too great, we experience worry and anxiety.  When they are not great enough, we experience boredom, depression or even sadness.  The emotions that arise from high challenges and low skills generate the lack of flow.

So, what is your experience?  As a leader, what emotions are you creating in your team and those around you?

Flow as a leader comes from continually taking people out of their comfort zones and challenging them…getting them comfortable with the uncomfortable.  As you do so, be aware of their skills and limitations to deal with the challenges.  This is where leadershipflow lives.  The more you can challenge others and give them the tools (time, training, coaching) the more frequently flow will take over.

What could you have done at 9am this morning to put yourself more in flow?


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