There are a number of characteristics in Christy’s basketball playing that defines her flow. First of all, he feels that she is “in the zone” when she is playing. Basically, this reflects to a state of mind. She worked in all aspects of the game and she did it effortlessly. Her responses were automatic and all the shots she took got in. Christy seems to be in a state of “optimal experience” as stated by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in the book entitled, “FLOW: The Psychology of Optimal Experience”.
Christy feels a sense of exhilaration and enjoyment in what she does. She is able to anticipate the movement of her adversaries and she knows the court very well. Moreover, in all of these tasks, she is calm, and focused even under pressure. There are strategies that would help Christy experience flow more. Csikszentmihalyi describes the feeling as autoletic. It elevates life to a different level (2008). Basically, one needs to build inner harmony. This is done by how one interprets everyday experiences.
This promotes happiness and an ability to control forces existing in the universe. Firstly, in order to achieve flow, one should take control of his body. Everything that the body does can be potentially enjoyable. The key to achieving flow is the enjoyment of doing. The important part of achieving flow is not the task in itself but how the task is being done. A person can achieve enjoyment by learning to impose order on one’s sensations. Christy needs to fully feel each sensation her body is experiencing.
She must always determine her goals and break them into parts. These parts should be challenging in themselves so that she may sustain enjoyment. There are also ways of experiencing flow more often and longer. One way is to try new things that eventually lead to development of new skill. More enjoyment will be experienced with more skills developed. It is important that progress in these activities is monitored so that the flow can be experienced longer. It is also good to increase the difficulty of a challenge.
Mastery of a particular skill may make one bored thus, a person such as Christy should try to find more challenges that she believes she can attain. Christy should also find more activities that she believes she can get flow from. It is essential that one needs to find many flow experiences as possible. Her coach plays a vital role in helping her experience flow more often. The coach can get her practicing with two opponents or shoot from the center of the court. This will not only avoid boredom but could increase her level of skill.
Christy should also try to always get feedback from people on what she is doing. Thus, it is important for the coach to always monitor her performance and tell her about it. The coach should also make sure that the team is practicing in a place where there are little distractions. The coach should avoid making Christy do multitasking. He should develop a lot of activities during practice that will make her stay focused. Lapses in time during practices may destroy the momentum of the players and lessen the chances of achieving flow. All these strategies are important in order to achieve flow.
Flow is essential for every experience because is promotes focus and total control of situations. It enables people to concentrate more effectively in their tasks. Understanding how to acquire it helps people to focus their attention at their will, without having others to get their attention. It also promotes happiness and enjoyment in all activities. Moreover, understanding flow can lead to understanding why people procrastinate on certain issues. References Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2008). Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. Chicago, IL: Harper Perennial.