Scientists have started to unravel what happens in the brain during flow when focus increases, you have ULTIMATE productivity, time disappears, and we get into ‘the zone’. By understanding the science, and using these practices we can increase our ability to get into flow consciousness.
The flow mindset will launch you to the next level, in any area of your life. You’ve got to earn this high-level mindset. Anyone who tries hard enough for it will eventually accomplish it. Don’t be left behind!
People used to believe that only prodigies and geniuses were able to tap into flow.
In fact, we can all tap into this super-human power and unleash our limitless potential!
Can we harness and control the flow state?
Fortunately, the answer is yes!
We have “hack-able” brains! Your brain can transform physically in reaction to our behaviors and thoughts. Why wouldn’t we take advantage of this real life, “cheat code”?
You don’t have to become an artist or a musician to experience flow. Be relaxed, yet alert and don’t worry or complain about how you’re performing. Keep going with it! Flow is a state of mind– not a time of the month. You must be having fun if you want to get into “the zone”.
Flow will give you an intense sensation of happiness and freedom while you are having a good time working on your craft. Learning how to take control of this mental state can have an astonishing impact on your life.
When you are not in flow:
Things aren’t working and thoughts aren’t flowing.
When You Are In a State of Flow:
- You‘re 100% focused on your task.
- Your creativity and productivity levels soar.
- You will lose track of time and of your environment. You might find that in flow, you don’t even exist!
Being in the zone is a liberating and an empowering feeling. After you’ve had it, trust me, you’ll want it again!
The desire to re-experience this state will motivate you to continue practicing, improving and fine-tuning your passion.
Brainwaves and Flow State
Scientists have been studying what happens in the brain during this elusive state of mind. They found that during flow, the brain releases massive amounts of norepinephrine, dopamine, anandamide, and serotonin.
These are all performance, mood, and creativity enhancing neurotransmitters. This explains the fantastic rush we get from being in the zone!
It isn’t only the neurochemicals that produce flow states, it’s also the frequency or brainwaves.
You can force your brainwaves to change to the desired state by listening to binaural beats and isochronic tones for Alpha and Theta. I will explain these in a moment.
Our brain activates the state of flow between Alpha (daydreaming) and Theta (almost asleep) brainwaves. This state of mind is called the “lucid state”. So, we want a calm (yet alert) mental state.
1. Make an Instrumental Playlist
(No lyrics. They will distract you and keep you away from flow.)
If you want to speed-up the process, you could listen to isochronic and binaural beats. Isochronic tones guide your dominant brainwave activity to a different frequency. This empowers you to alter your mental state.
Our dominant brainwave patterns and our daily life are inseparable. Brainwaves are created by synchronized electrical pulses from neurons communicating with each other.
The 5 brainwaves are (from fastest to slowest) the Gamma, Beta, Alpha, Theta and Delta each speed will give you a different mindset.
Brainwave speed is measured in Hertz (cycles per second). These sounds are set each corresponding brainwave frequency. Listen to these YouTubes to try it out!
2. Choose a challenging activity that you love doing
Choose something that is hard enough to stretch your abilities, but not so difficult that you get discouraged.
Any consistent task that you have fun doing, can put you into a flow state. Some people like to write, play sports, clean, draw or practice whatever it is they want to master, so they get into the zone.
3. Discover your most productive time of the day
There are specific times of the day when you are most efficient. Choose your most productive and creative time of day. Practice working in flow at that time and you could be up to 3x more productive.
4. Create the perfect “flow-inducing” environment.
Clean your space, this is where you’ll practice your skill to enter the flow state. Choose a space where it is less likely to be distracted.
Focus is key and it’s hard to focus when there’s clutter everywhere.
5. Get outside
After a while, if you feel as if your brain has flat-lined, take a break! You aren’t being productive if you’re staring blankly at your laptop.
Physical exercise is essential for a strong mind and body… whether we want to or not. This will allow your brain to rest so it can perform optimally when you get back.
6. Stay hydrated.
You will lose track of time in flow, so you will want to make sure you are drinking enough water.
Dehydration side effects can sneak up on you. You could get headaches, memory problems, “brain fog” or confusion. For these reasons, you should make sure you have some water nearby as you work.
Check out this TEDtalk by Steven Kotler on how to get into the flow.
After you’ve practiced the above steps you’ll be ready to enter flow. Keep practicing until it’s burned into your brain, then you can let flow sweep you away. Have fun!
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