Flow - What it is and how you can find yours!
- An Ayurvedic Perspective -
WHAT is FLOW? WHY is it useful? And HOW can you get more?
The state of flow, or being “in the zone”, is a state of peak performance. It is a state of meditation or mindfulness, that you enter while being absorbed in an activity. When in flow, whatever you're doing is effortless, effective. You may lose sense of time and space as you fully immerse yourself in the task at hand.
The term "flow state" is becoming increasingly popular among those striving to achieve great athletic or creative endeavours.. but achieving a state of flow is not reserved for athletes, poets and dancers - it can be achieved whilst performing anything at all, so long as the individual can direct all their energy to the task at hand.
According to Ayurveda this "flow" is known as our "prana" or life-force (known also as chi/qi). When our life-force flows through us unobstructed, we experience life effortlessly and find that our tasks, relationships and pursuits flow with ease and grace. When we live from our dharma (purpose) and honour the needs of our dosha (body-mind type), prana flows freely and we can experience this blissful state regularly.
It is useful to know how to cultivate the right conditions to embrace a "flow state". Of course, - as mentioned, there needs to be a free-flow of prana within your body. This prana needs to be replenished and restored often through wholesome food, practices and relationships. A great way to increase your pranic flow is through the practices of yoga, meditation and consuming foods that are right for your body-type
Here are some general guidelines however, that can make it easier for you to embody a state of flow at any given time:
1. Before you begin your task, pause. Take 3 long, slow, mindful breaths in and out and bring all of your awareness to your breath.
2. Focus all of your attention on the present. Imagine that for the duration of your desired activity, the past and future do not exist. "BE HERE NOW" (Ram Dass) is a great mantra to use!
3. Slowly, with deliberate movements, go about your activity in a meditative fashion. Focusing all of your attention on what you're doing with a subtle awareness maintained still on the breath. If your mind or actions wander, bring them back to the task at hand.
Experiment with this method the next time you set your mind to something and notice how well you "flow".
There are many ways to increase prana (life-force) within your body, specific to your body-mind type (dosha) so you can easily cultivate your own flow state. If you'd like to learn more about the unique ways you can increase your prana, email email@example.com