In positive psychology , flow , also known as the area , is the mental state of operation in which a person performs an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, it is characterized by complete absorption in one, and in the case of space and time.
Named by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi , the concept has-been Widely referenced across a variety of fields (and HAS year Especially big recognition in occupational therapy ), though the concept HAS Existed for Thousands of years under other guises, notably In Some Eastern religions .  Achieving flow is often colloquially referred to as being in the area .
Flow shares many characteristics with hyperfocus . However, hyperfocus is not always described in a positive light. Some examples include spending “too much” time playing video games or getting side-tracked and pleasurably absorbed by one aspect of an assignment or task to the detriment of the overall assignment. In some cases, hyperfocus can “capture” a person, subject to several projects, but complete few.
Jeanne Nakamura and Csíkszentmihályi identify the following six factors as encompassing the experience of flow: 
- Intense and focused concentration on the present moment
- Merging of action and awareness
- A loss of reflective self-consciousness
- A sense of personal control or agency over the situation or activity
- A distortion of temporal experience, one’s subjective experience of time is altered
- Experience of the activity as intrinsically rewarding , also referred to as autotelic experience
These aspects may appear independently of each other, but only in combination of which they are so-called for experience . Additionally, psychology writer Kendra Cherry HAS MENTIONED three other components That Csíkszentmihályi lists as being white apart of the flow experience: 
- “Immediate feedback” 
- Feeling that you have the potential to succeed
- Feeling so engrossed in the experience, that other needs become negligible
These conditions can be independent of one another.
Csíkszentmihályi’s flow is so named during 1975. Several interviews were made with the metaphor of the water flow. 
Mihaly Csikszentmihályi and his fellow researchers began researching after Csikszentmihályi became fascinated by artists who would get lost in their work. Artists, especially painters, got so immersed in their work that they would disregard their need for food, water and even sleep. Thus, the origin of the research on the theory of the flow of Csikszentmihályi. Flow research became prevalent in the 1980s and 1990s, with Csikszentmihályi and his colleagues in Italy still at the forefront. Researchers interested in optimal experiences and affirmative positive experiences, especially in such places as schools and the business world, also began studying the theory of flow at this time. The theory of being used in the theory ofAbraham Maslow and Carl Rogers in their development of the humanistic tradition of psychology . 
Flow has been recognized throughout history and across cultures. The teachings of Buddhism and of Taoism speak of a state of mind known as “action of inaction” or “doing without doing” ( wu wei in Taoism) that greatly resembles the idea of flow. Also, Hindu texts on Advaita philosophy such as Ashtavakra Gita and Bhagavad-Gita refer to a similar state.
In every given moment, there is a great deal of information made available to each individual. Psychologists have found that one’s mind can only expect a certain amount of information at a time. According to Csikszentmihályi’s 2004 TED talk, that number is about “110 bits of information per second”.  That may seem like a lot of information. Just decoding speech takes about 60 bits of information per second.  That is why when having a conversation can not focus much attention on other things.
For the most part, people are able to decide what they want to focus their attention on. However, when one is in the state, they are completely engrossed with the task, and they do not know what to do with, so they are aware of the time, people, distractions, and even basic bodily needs. This is all about the attention of the person in the state of the workplace; There is no more attention to be allocated. 
The flow state has been described by Csikszentmihályi as the “optimal experience” in that one gets to a level of high gratification from the experience.  Achieving this experience is considered to be personal and depends on the ability of the individual.  One’s ability and desire to overcome challenges in order to maximize their satisfaction, but also to a sense of life satisfaction overall. 
There are three common ways to measure flow experiments: the flow questionnaire (FQ), the ESM experiment, and the “standardized scales of the componential approach”. 
The FQ requires individuals to identify their flow and induce them to come to terms with their personal experiences in these flow-inducing situations. The FQ identified for a single construct, thus allowing the results to be used to estimate differences in the likelihood of experiencing a variety of factors. Another strength of the FQ is that it does not assume that everyone’s experiences are the same. Because of this, the FQ is the ideal measure for estimating the prevalence of flow. However, the FQ has some weaknesses that have more recent methods set out to address. The FQ does not allow for the measurement of the intensity of specific activities.
Experience sampling method
The ESM is a student at the ESF (ESF) at eight randomly chosen times throughout the day. The purpose of this is to understand subjective experiences by estimating the time that individuals spend in specific states during everyday life. The ESF is made up of 13 categories and 29 scaled items. The purpose of the categories is to determine the context and motivationalaspects of the current actions (these items include: time, location, companionship / desire for companionship, activity being performed, reason for performing activity). Because these questions are open-ended, the answers need to be coded by researchers. This needs to be done carefully so as to avoid any biases in the statistical analysis. The scaled items are intended to measure the levels of a variety of subjective feelings that the individual may be experiencing. The ESM is more complex than the FQ and contributes to the understanding of how to play a variety of situations, but the possible biases make it a risky choice. 
Some researchers are not satisfied with the methods described above and create their own scales. The scales developed by Jackson and Eklund are the most commonly used in research, mainly because they are still consistent with Csíkszentmihályi’s definition of flow and consideration of both a state and a trait. Jackson and Eklund: The Flow State Scale-2 (which measures the flow of a state) and the Dispositional Flow Scale-2 (designed to measure -specific trait). The statistical analysis of the individual results gives a much more complete understanding of the ESM and the FQ. 
A flow state can be introduced while performing any activity, but it is more likely to occur when performing a task or activity for intrinsic purposes .   Passive activities like taking a bath or even watching TV usually do not take place.   While the activities are varied, they are multifaceted. 
Flow theory postulates
- One must be involved in an activity with a clear set of goals and progress. This adds direction and structure to the task. 
- The task at hand must have clear and immediate feedback. This helps the person negotiate any changes and allows them to adjust their performance to maintain the flow state. 
- One must have a good balance between the perceived challenges of the task and their perceived perceived skills. One must have confidence in one’s ability to complete the task at hand. 
However, it is argued that the following factors are interrelated, what is it? ). Thus, a perceived fit of skills and tasks can be identified as the central precondition of flow experiences. 
In 1987, Massimini, Csíkszentmihályi and Carli published the 8-channel model of flow shown here.  Antonella Delle Fave, who worked with Fausto Massimini at the University of Milan, now calls this graph the Experience Fluctuation Model.  The Experience Fluctuation Model depicts the channels of experience that result from different levels of perceived challenges and perceived skills. This graph shows one more aspect of flow: it is more likely to occur when the activity is a higher-than-average challenge (above the center point) and the individual has above-average skills (to the right of the center point ). The center of this graph (where the sectors meet) represents one’s individual levels of challenge and skill in all their individual activities during their daily life. The greater of the center of the experience is the greater of the state of being or of being boredom or relaxation. 
Several problems of this model have been discussed in literature.   One of the precursors to the balance is that of the precondition of flow. Individuals with a low average level of skills and a high average level of challenges (or the other way round)  In addition, one study found that low challenge situations that were overpassed by skill were associated with enjoyment, relaxation, and happiness, which, they claim, is contrary to flow theory. 
Schaffer (2013) proposed 7 for conditions:
- Knowing what to do
- Knowing how to do it
- Knowing how well you are doing
- Knowing where to go (if navigation is involved)
- High perceived challenges
- High perceived skills
- Freedom from distractions 
The Flow Condition Questionnaire (FCQ), also published a measure, for the purpose of any given task or activity. 
Challenges to staying
Some of the challenges to stay in the world include states of apathy, boredom, and anxiety. Being in a state of apathy is characterized by the following: Boredom is a bit different, but one of those challenges is one of them. Lastly, a state of anxiety occurs when one of the greatest distress and uneasiness. These states in general in a state of flow. Therefore, Csíkszentmihályi has said, “If challenges are too much, one can get back to the flow state by learning new skills.” 
The autotelic personality
Csíkszentmihályi hypothesized that people with several very specific personality may be better able to achieve more than the average person. These personality traits include curiosity, persistence, low self-centeredness, and a high rate of performing activities for intrinsic reasons only. These people are said to have an autotelic personality .  The term “autotelic” is acquired from two Greek words, self , meaning self, and telos meaning goal. Being Autotelic means having a self-contained activity, which is not the expectation of some future benefit. 
At this point, there is much more research on the autotelic personality , but results of the few studies that are more likely than others. One researcher (Abuhamdeh, 2000) found that people with an autotelic personality have a greater preference for “high-action-opportunity, high-skills situations that encourage and encourage growth” compared to those without an autotelic personality.  It is in such high-challenge, high-skill situations that people are most likely to enter the flow state.
Experimental evidence shows That balance has entre skills of the individual and demands of the task (Compared To boredom and overload) only elicits flow experiments in Individuals caractérisée by an internal locus of control gold habitual Action orientation.  Several correlational studies found that they need to achieve a personal characteristic that fosters flow experiences.   
Group flow is inseparably different from independent flow. Group is possible when the performance unit is a group, such as a team or musical group. When groups co-ordinate with social networks, it is much more likely to occur. If a group still has not entered, a team-level challenge may encourage the group to harmonize. 
Applications suggested by Csíkszentmihályi versus other practitioners
Only Csíkszentmihályi seems to have published suggestions for extrinsic applications of the flow concept, such as design methods for playgrounds to elicit the flow experience. Other practitioners of Csíkszentmihályi’s concept focuses on intrinsic applications, such as spirituality , performance improvement , or self-help . His work has been informed by the New Science of Philanthropy.
In education , the concept of overlearning plays a role in a student’s ability to achieve flow. Csíkszentmihályi  states that overlearning enables the mind to concentrate on visualizing the desired performance as a singular, integrated action instead of a set of actions. Challenging assignments that (slightly) stretch one’s skills lead to flow. 
In the 1950s British cybernetician Gordon Pask designed an adaptive teaching machine called SAKI, an early example of “e-learning”. The machine is discussed in some detail in Stafford’s Beer’s book “Cybernetics and Management”.  In the patent application for SAKI (1956),  which is quite consistent with flow theory:
If the operator is receiving data at too slow a rate, he is likely to become bored and expect to other irrelevant data.
If the data given is too precise, the operator is required to make it, the skill becomes too easy to perform and the operator tends to become bored.
If the data given is too complicated, the operator is unable to deal with it. He is then liable to become discouraged and lose interest in performing or learning the skill.
Ideally, for an operator to perform a task efficiently, the data presented to him should always be of sufficient complexity to maintain his interest and maintain a competitive situation, but not so complex as to discourage the operator. These conditions should be obtained at each stage of a learning process if it is to be efficient. A tutor teaching one pupil seeks to maintain just these conditions.
Around 2000, it came to the attention of Csíkszentmihályi that the principles and practices of the Montessori Method of Education seemed to be set for continuous flow of opportunities for students. Csíkszentmihályi and psychologist Kevin Rathunde embarked on a multi-year study of student experiences in Montessori. The research supported comments that students made their experiences in Montessori settings.   
Musicians, especially improvisational soloists , may experience a state of flow while playing their instrument. Researchers have shown that they perform in a state of performance when they are not in a flow state. In the field of pianism, the pianists played a large part of the pianist’s heart rate, a significant relationship between the pianist and the pianist. As the pianist entered the flow state, the heart muscles relaxed. This study is more important than a state of effortless attention. In spite of the effortless attention and overall relaxation of the body, the performance of the pianist during the flow state improved. 
Groups of drummers experience a sense of collective sense that drives the beat, something they refer to as the groove or entrainment . Likewise drummers and bass guitarists often describe a state of mind when they are feeling down . 
The concept of being in the field during an athletic performance fits within the scope of the experience, and theories and applications of being in the field and its relationship with athletic competitive are discussed in the field of sport psychology . 
Timothy Gallwey ‘s influential works on the “inner game” of golf and tennis describes the mental coaching and attitudes required to “get into the zone” and fully internalize mastery of the sport. 
Roy Palmer suggests that “being in the zone” can also influence movement patterns as well as better integration of the conscious and subconscious reflex functions improving coordination. Many athletes describe the effortless nature of their performance while achieving personal bests.   
Many in martial arts , the term Budō is used to describe psychological flow.  Mixed martial arts champion and Karate master Lyoto Machida uses meditation techniques before fights to attain mushin , a concept that, by his description, is in all respects equal to flow.
The Formula One driver Ayrton Senna , during qualifying for the 1988 Monaco Grand Prix , explained: “I was already on pole, […] and I just kept going. And suddenly, I was driving only a little bit in my life, I was driving it, I was driving it, I was driving in a tunnel. ” 
Form 500 GP rider Wayne Gardner talking about his victory at the 1990 Australian Grand Prix on the Unrideables 2 documentary said: “These two years ago I had this experience and I could see myself racing. It was kind of a remote control and it’s the weirdest thing I’ve ever had in my life. […] After the race Mick [Doohan] and in fact Wayne Rainey said:? How the hell did you do that ” ‘and I said:’ ‘. I have no idea’ ” ‘ 
Religion and spirituality
Csíkszentmihályi may have been the first to describe this concept in Western psychology , it is most certainly not the first to quantify the concept of flow or develop applications based on the concept.
For millennia, practitioners of Eastern religions such as Hinduism , Buddhism , Taoism and later in Sufism have honed the discipline of overcoming the duality of self and object as a central feature of spiritual development. Eastern Spirituality of the Spirituality of Spirituality and the Functionality of Spirituality and the Control of Modern Science.
Csíkszentmihályi’s concept is related to the idea of being at one with things or as a psychologist expert, Kendra Cherry, describes it: “complete immersion in an activity”.  Practitioners of the varied schools of Zen Buddhism apply concepts similar to Flow to aid Their mastery of art forms, Including, in the case of Japanese Zen Buddhism, Aikido , Cheng Hsin , Judo , Honkyoku , Kendo and Ikebana . In yogic traditions such as Raja Yoga , reference is made to a state of flow  in the practice of Samyama, a psychological absorption in the object of meditation.  Theravada Buddhism refers to “access concentration”, qui est a state of flow Achieved through meditation and used to further Top Strengthen concentration into jhana , and / or to Develop insight .
In Islam , the first mental state of the world is known as jila al-khatir, which roughly translates to ‘cleansing the heart’.  [ page needed ]
Flow is one of the main reasons that people play video games.  It improves performance; calling the phenomenon “TV trance”, a 1981 BYTE article discussed how “the best seems to enter a trance where they play but do not pay attention to the details of the game”.  The primary goal of games is to create entertainment through intrinsic motivation , which is related to flow; that is, without intrinsic motivation it is virtually impossible to establish flow. Through the balance of skill and challenge the player’s brain is aroused, with a focus on high motivation. Thus, the use of a player in the form of a player and a player who plays with a player or a player who wants to play. As such, game designers live in their projects.  Overall, the experience of play is fluid and is intrinsically psychologically rewarding independent of scores or in-game successes in the flow state. 
In games often much can be achieved in a meaningful way. Horror games often keep challenges significantly above the player’s level of competency in order to foster a continuous feeling of anxiety. Conversely, so called “relaxation games” keep the level of challenges high and low. [ citation needed ] The video game Flow was designed as part of Jenova Chen ‘s master’s thesis for exploring the design decisions that allow players to achieve the flow state, by adjusting the difficulty dynamically during play. 
Flow in games has been linked to the Laws of Learning as part of the explanation for the purpose of learning-games (the use of games to introduce material, improve understanding, or increase retention) to the potential to be effective.  In particular, flow is intrinsically motivating, which is part of the Law of Readiness . The condition of feedback, required for flow, is associated with the feedback aspects of the Law of Exercise . This is exhibited in well designed games, where players perform at the edge of their competences and they are guided by clear goals and feedback.  The positive emotions associated with the Law of Effect. The intense experiences of being in direct contact with the Law of Intensity . Thus, the experience of gaming can be both engaging and motivating as it meets many of the Laws of Learning, which are inextricably connected to creating flow.
Design of intrinsically motivated computer systems
A simplified modification to the concept of technology acceptance model (TAM) to help guide the design of and explain the adoption of intrinsically motivated computer systems. This model, the hedonic-motivation system adoption model (HMSAM) is model to improve the understanding of hedonic-motivation systems (HMS) adoption. HMS are primarily used to fulfill their intrinsic motivations, such as online gaming, virtual worlds, online shopping, learning / education, online dating, digital music repositories, social networking, online pornography, gamified systems, and for general gamification. Instead of a minor, TAM extension, HMSAM is an HMS-specific system acceptance model based on an alternative theoretical perspective, which is in turn grounded in flow-based concepts of cognitive absorption (CA). The HMSAM further builds on the van der Heijden’s (2004) model of hedonic system adoption by including CA and a key mediator of perceived ease of use (PEOU) and of behavioral intentions to use (BIU) hedonic-motivation systems. Typically, models simplistically represent “intrinsic motivations” by mere perceived enjoyed. Instead, HMSAM uses the more complex, rich construct of CA, which includes joy, control, curiosity, focused immersion, and temporal dissociation. This paper has been written in the past, yet ironically, has been used as a static construct, and as such, all of its subcontracts occur at the same time in direct contradiction to the flow literature. Thus, part of HMSAM’s contribution to CA Reaction to its flow roots by re-ordering these CA subconstructs into more natural process-variance order as predicted by flow.
Professions and work
Developers of computer software reference getting into a flow state as “wired in” gold Sometimes as The Zone ,   hack fashion ,  or operating one software time  When Developing in an undistracted state. Stock market operators often use the term “in the pipe” to describe the psychological state of flow when trading during high volume days and market corrections. Professional poker players use the term “playing the A-game” when referring to the state of the highest concentration and strategic awareness, while the pool of players often calls the state being “dead stroke”.
In the workplace
Conditions of flow, defined in a state of play and skills are equally matched, play an extremely important role in the workplace. Because flow is associated with achievement, its development could have implications in increasing workplace satisfaction and accomplishment. Flow researchers, such as Csikszentmihályi, believe that certain interventions can be made in the workplace, through which people would gain inward-looking and persistence and provide benefits. that is conducive to flow, and identifying and developing personal characteristics in the workplace. can be improved by fostering a sense of greater happiness and accomplishment, which can be correlated with increased performance. In his review of Mihály Csikszentmihályi’s book “Good Business: Leadership, Flow, and the Making of Meaning,” Coert Visser introduces the ideas presented by Csikszentmihályi, including “good work” in which one to something beyond yourself. “ He then provides tools by which managers and employees can create an atmosphere that encourages good work. Some consultants suggest that the experience sampling (EMS) method be used for individuals and groups in the workplace in order to identify how time is currently being spent, and where it should be redirected to increase growth. 
In order to achieve flow, Csikszentmihályi lays out the following three conditions:
- Goals are clear
- Feedback is immediate
- A balance between opportunity and capacity
Csikszentmihályi argues that with increased experiences of flow, people experience “growth towards complexity”. People flourish as they grow with increasing development of emotional, cognitive, and social complexity. Csikszentmihályi argues, can increase the happiness and achievement of employees. An increasingly popular way of working in the workplace is using Serious Play facilitation methods. Some business organizations-have used the concept of flow in building corporate branding and identity for example The Floow Limited qui ict company created from the brand concept.
There are, however, barriers to achieving success in the workplace. In his chapter “Why Flow Does not Happen on the Job,” Csikszentmihályi argues that the first reason is that the goals of one’s job are not clear. He explains that while he is at work, he may be working on a larger, individualized organization. Second, limited feedback about one’s work can reduce motivation and leaves the employee unaware of whether or not they did a good job. When there is little communication of feedback, an employee may not be assigned tasks that challenge them or seem important, which could potentially prevent an opportunity for flow.
Karina Nielsen and Bryan Cleal in the study “Predicting for Work: A Review of the Activities and Prediction of the Situation and Workflow”. , problem solving, and evaluation) and at a more stable level (such as role clarity, influence, and cognitive demands). They found that activities such as planning, problem solving, and prediction are more likely to be successful. This study can help us identify who we are working at.  In the article in Positive Psychology News DailyKathryn Britton discusses the importance of living in the workplace beyond the individual benefits it creates. She writes, “Flow is not only valuable to individuals, but also to organizational goals.” For example, frequent experiences in the field of higher productivity, innovation, and employee development (Csikszentmihályi, 1991, 2004). to increase the frequency of flow experiences for their workplaces. ” 
Books by Csikszentmihályi suggest that enhancing the time spent in the world. Flow experiences are predicted to lead to positive performance.   For example, delinquent behavior was reduced in adolescents after two years of enhancing flow through activities. 
However, further empirical evidence is required to substantiate these preliminary indications, and continues to explore the problem of how to achieve direct causality in the use of modern scientific instrumentation to observe the neuro-physiological correlates of the flow state. 
Positive affect and life satisfaction
Flow is an innately positive experience; it is known to produce intense feelings of enjoyment.  An experience that is so enjoyable should lead to positive affect and happiness in the long run. Also, Csikszentmihályi stated that happiness is derived from personal development and growth. 
Several studies found That flow experiences and positive affect, go hand in hand,   and That challenges and skills above-the average individual’s foster positive affect.    However, the causal processes remain unclear at present.
Performance and learning
Flow experiments imply a growth principle. When one is in a flow state, he or she is working to master the activity at hand. To maintain that flow state, one must seek greater challenges. Attempting these new, difficult challenges stretches one’s skills. One emerges from such a flow of personal growth and great feelings of competence and efficacy.  By increasing time spent in flow, intrinsic motivation and self-directed learning also increases. 
Flow of Science in the Fields of Scientific and Scientific Creativity,   teaching,  learning,  and sports;  
Flow has been linked to persistence and achievement in various activities and self-esteem. 
However, evidence regarding better performance in flow situations is mixed.  For sure, the association between the two is a reciprocal one. That is, better performance, better performance, more successful. Results of a longitudinal study in the context of the causality of the performance of small and medium-sized patients and the relationship between performance and performance.  In the long run, the results of this study can be compared to a higher activity rate. 
Csikszentmihályi writes about the dangers of flow himself:
They may be capable of improving the quality of existence by creating order in the mind, they can become addictive, to which point the self becomes captive of a certain kind of order, and is then unwilling to cope with the ambiguities of life.
Further, he writes:
The flow experience, like everything else, is not “good” in an absolute sense. It is good that it has the potential to make life more rich, intense, and meaningful; it is good because it increases the strength and complexity of the self. But whether the consequence of any particular instance of 
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- Jump up^ Michael Lopp (12 June 2007), “Chapter 25: A Nerd in a Cave” ,Managing Humans: Biting and Humorous Tales of a Software Engineering Manager , Apress , p. 143, ISBN 978-1-59059-844-3 ,
[The Zone] is a deeply creative space where inspiration is built. Anything which you perceive as beautiful, useful, or come from someone stumbling through The Zone.
- Jump up^ Joel Spolsky (9 August 2000), The Joel Test: 12 Steps to Better Code ,
We know that knowledge workers work better by getting into ‘flow’, also known as being ‘in the zone’ (…) Writers, programmers, scientists, and even basketball players will tell you about being in the zone.
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When things go well, you can lose track of passing the psychologists call “flow. ” When things go badly, you get stuck, frozen between dimensions, unable to move or see a way forward. Either way, you’ve left the clock far behind. You’re on software time.
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- Jump up^ Nakamura, J., & Csikszentmihályi, M. (2014). The concept of flow. “Handbook of positive psychology,” 89-105. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
- Jump up^ Mihály Csikszentmihályi (1992). Flow: The Psychology of Happiness . Rider. ISBN 0-7126-5477-1 . Retrieved 25 October 2015 .