Flow is a heightened state of consciousness that occurs when:

  • You are working on tasks that match your skills.
  • There's a clear goal.
  • There's constant feedback as to progress and attainment of the goal.
  • You are free to fully engage in the task, e.g.
    • No time pressure.
    • No interference from other goals. You focus on one goal at a time.
      • To avoid interference, schedule your other goals by writing them down, using an alarm to remind you of other goals, or structuring your task so that after a set time the goal will have been achieved.
      • You can't sleep if you worry about not waking up.
      • You can't exercise efficiently if you worry about exercising for too long.
  • You believe in the possibility of achieving the goal immediately.

The Flow Theory explains the state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter, totally unaware of their surroundings but enjoying the task and having fun while doing it.