Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow is that one book which is often referred to by a lot of people who have worked their way to success and happiness. In a recent book that I read, Tribe of Mentors, Flow was suggested by some of the people as an influential book.
What is Flow? According to the author, Flow is a “state of joy, creativity and total involvement, in which problems seems to disappear and there is an exhilarating feeling of transcendence.”
Have you ever experienced that moment in your life when you are so preoccupied with whatever you are doing that you lose track of time? That’s called Flow. Have you ever had experiences where you feel time is going by fast, and you realize how much you were having fun? That’s called Flow. Or how about that moment when you lose yourself in a book you are reading and it’s sunrise outside. That’s called Flow. Yeah, I have been through these moments and so many more. Somehow I couldn’t place a finger to what that experience is all about.
Ultimately, Flow is a book that teaches us how to understand ourselves better and how to work on ways achieve happiness. The writer takes us through the concept of Flow very systematically:
- What is happiness
- What is consciousness
- Ejkjoyment and Quality of Life
- The Conditions of Flow
- The Body in Flow
- The Flow of Thought
- Work as Flow
- Enjoying Solitude and Other People
- Creating Chaos
- The Making of Meaning
Initially, while reading the first few pages, I was thinking why would anyone write an entire book on a simple concept? Why does there need to be such an in depth analysis and research on this? It turns out that the author does a fine job of going into details on how we function as human beings, and how we can make little changes to bring about happiness we seek.
The one important thing that book stresses upon is how we should not be seeking happiness in material things, or in goals that we seek, because once we achieve the material things, or goals, we tend to seek happiness in other things. Instead, when we learn how to work within ourselves, and with our inner selves, we can find happiness right here and now.
I won’t go too much into the details for the book deserves to be read if you are looking to seek happiness. This book, along with The How of Happiness are the two books that I would place right on top for books on happiness. Both these books are heavily researched, and back up their content with evidence.