When you stop taking things so seriously then you start seeing them clearly.
I have found in the morning, if I eat, brush my teeth, do some squats and yoga, and drink my tea, then my brain wakes up much quicker and my morning goes much better. That brings me to one of the core elements of flow.
The first reason flow is such a struggle for people is for one thing it isn’t a passive state you accidentally fall into. They think of activity as falling into flow by accident. It will happen if you are lucky. This isn’t actually true. Engagement is necessary to experience flow. There has to be movement, motivation and intention, and whatever moves you internally or externally can start the state of flow which can then extend through long parts of the day.
Some people keep really busy by doing many things poorly. I prefer to focus my attention on one thing at a time, and do it the best I can. Focus is another element of flow, but an important point… Can you flow with something that you find strong distaste for? Can you feel flow butchering chickens? Can you flow fully if you have emotional misgivings?
If it’s something you are practiced at doing even if you don’t want to do it, but not at first. It is possible, and there are different levels of resistance to activity. Can you find flow butchering humans? It’s an extreme question but I only ask it to illustrate a point.
A serial killer might? On some level even they never do. Those who never get caught, avoid getting caught because they eventually give it up.
It may be possible in some cases to find an aspect in the process that you have a positive relationship to, and focus on that? Intention does indeed affect flow.
Martial arts is very much like finding a flow hurting humans. Ah, the martial arts is an interesting example. There are two faces to that. In the martial arts, you can find flow in moving with the movement in the engagement. Many martial artists, even ancient ones, find their flow in practising the martial arts as a corrective movement discipline. They learn the techniques they do in order to negate those moments of dissonance that they know will occur when dealing with other beings, and their entire focus and intention has nothing to do with hurting other beings. You can see it in their body language as they practice, even in their demeanour when they are doing everyday things.
Then there is the other side. I would call it flowing like thunder. They also practice the martial arts, and they find their flow in the clash of spirit that can occur. They live with internal turmoil also. Their intention is just to accept the state of violence and struggle in the world, and though they also don’t actually intend to hurt people, it’s seen as an inevitable outcome.
I’m reminded how assassins, for example, have to have cool heads. So do body guards. A macho body guard will get their ward killed. They will engage in blind risk taking and inevitably overlook something they were supposed to be on guard against.
Can emotions get in the way of flow? Emotion doesn’t get in the way of flow. It’s like water. It reflects the state of flow you are in. If the emotion seems stagnant and muddied, your flow is very poor. Ever experience this? When you have to say you don’t know what you feel, or don’t know what you want. Don’t know how you feel and don’t know what you want are the same thing. Can you know one and not the other?
Emotions muddy the flow? No. When emotion is flowing, it’s very clear. Desires are clear, and ideally you do what you love and love what you do. If you can’t feel your emotion, that is the state of being muddied. I strongly recommend that the emotionally insensate state be treated like having your blood circulation cut off.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.