“Make yourself happy through your own efforts; you can do this.” – Seneca
Flow is as good a definition as we are likely to find for the state of contentment in the human experience. It breaks down to a person focused on performing a doable task that has a clear goal, offers immediate feedback, allows the performer to move without worrying and absorbs the actor so much that they lose sense of self and time. Athletes, surgeons, pilots, and writers are likely to be able to describe this to any of us.
How can we apply this to our own lives? If we are honest with ourselves and we have identified the areas we would like to work on – our weaknesses – then we can set small, easily reached goals that will provide immediate feedback.
If for example we want to be better about managing our time, it won’t help much to set a time budget that will take a month to audit, instead we should break down our morning routine into steps, determine which of them are necessary and then perform only the necessary steps in a set sequence one morning – with no deviations. Getting to work on time or getting out the door with enough time to enjoy our commute will be a reward in itself.
There are likely a dozen or so things like this that each of us could add to our daily lives. We should start with a small manageable number and we should start today.
virtus fortis vocat