Let There Be Flow

Like many other activities, some creative and some not, writing is better and more fluent when you are in a flow state. When you are in a state of flow, you are completely absorbed in what you do, and you are fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus. When you are in a state of flow, writing becomes natural. You write better and often faster. 

But how can we get into a state of flow? Can we increase the chances of entering and maintaining this state to achieve better results? 

In this issue, we explore three ways to help us “be in the zone.” None of them guarantees we enter a state of flow, but together they increase the chances of finding ourselves in the flow and being able to hang on to it longer. 

Find the Optimal Setup

Flow is a mental state, but it starts with the physical environment. 

Maybe the most critical aspect of creating a setup that enables flow is killing all potential distractions. We cannot be immersed in what we are doing when random distractions keep grabbing our attention. It starts with turning off the phone, but some distractions originate from the environment. 

Find the setup that works best for you. Some people prefer to work in nature, while others prefer a crowded coffee shop; some prefer the privacy of their home, and others will find the best place to flow is a co-working space. Experiment with different setups and stick with the ones that allow you to get into a state of flow more often.

Write About Something Important to You

Like many other creative activities, writing has some technical aspects to it. But you will rarely be in a flow state when you are focused solely on the technical aspects. You can only be immersed in writing something you deeply care about. 

When your writing is connected to your mission, and when you write authentically, it is much more likely to experience a state of flow. If you write just to fill a quota or can’t find meaning and value in the topic you write about, you will rarely be able to focus on it for long periods. 

Design Your Content 

It may sound strange, but when you know exactly what you are about to write, it is easier to be immersed in the act of writing. 

Being in a state of flow does not mean inventing everything on the fly as you write. On the contrary. If I had to come up with an effective example, design a metaphor, or just consider what part of the text should come before the other, I wouldn’t be able to be immersed in writing. Making all these design decisions before I start writing the text allows me to focus entirely on writing and get into a state of flow. I can write without breaking the flow to conduct some research or consider different options.

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yellow spice version: 2022.05.0017

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