What do I feel kite-surfing?
I have being kiting and surfing for many years, I jumped from an airplane with parachute, I love jumping from waterfalls and some rock climbing too. All this are experiences that I enjoyed a lot.
Contrary to what some may think, I don’t like to put myself in dangerous situations and I hate to hurt myself and I am not an adrenaline seeker. And the most of my friends that are involved in these sports are more or less like me. Then, why we do them? A few years ago I find in the internet a concept created by professor Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and use in psychology: “Flow” and when I studied, I realized that this is what I look for when I kite-surf or surf.
According to Myhali, Flow is “an state of being completely involved in an activity for its own sake. The ego falls away. Time flies. Every action, movement, and thought follows inevitably from the previous one, like playing jazz. Your whole being is involved, and you’re using your skills to the utmost. To achieve a flow state, a balance must be struck between the challenge of the task and the skill of the performer. If the task is too easy or too difficult, flow cannot occur. Both skill level and challenge level must be matched and high; if skill and challenge are low and matched, then apathy results.
The flow state also implies a kind of focused attention, and indeed, it has been noted that mindfulness, meditation, yoga, and martial arts seem to improve a person’s capacity for flow. Among other benefits, all of these activities train and improve attention”
Not only by sports is possible to find the flow, actually it was a phenomenon that was studied first in artist. It’s being said that when Michelangelo paint the Sixtine Chapel, he didn’t eat or sleep much to the point that he vanish often and when he came back, he continue painting, this was because for him there was no hunger, there was no sleep, he was in such mental state where the challenge was as great as his skills. When this happens, when you find a challenge according to your skills, in that moment you don’t think about it because you don’t think about anything but in that moment you are happy.
You can find the flow in your work, when you read, when you write. If you don’t have something like this in your life, go out and look for a challenge and do it know because you don’t know what you are missing.
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