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Quotes from “Flow” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Anya Saniukevich
Anya Saniukevichhas quoted4 years ago
Cicero once wrote that to be completely free one must become a slave to a set of laws. In other words, accepting limitations is liberating.
Anya Saniukevich
Anya Saniukevichhas quoted4 years ago
enjoyment depends on increasing complexity
Anya Saniukevich
Anya Saniukevichhas quoted4 years ago
The essential steps in this process are: (a) to set an overall goal, and as many subgoals as are realistically feasible; (b) to find ways of measuring progress in terms of the goals chosen; (c) to keep concentrating on what one is doing, and to keep making finer and finer distinctions in the challenges involved in the activity; (d) to develop the skills necessary to interact with the opportunities available; and (e) to keep raising the stakes if the activity becomes boring.
Anya Saniukevich
Anya Saniukevichhas quoted4 years ago
Cultures are defensive constructions against chaos, designed to reduce the impact of randomness on experience. They are adaptive responses, just as feathers are for birds and fur is for mammals. Cultures prescribe norms, evolve goals, build beliefs that help us tackle the challenges of existence. In so doing they must rule out many alternative goals and beliefs, and thereby limit possibilities; but this channeling of attention to a limited set of goals and means is what allows effortless action within self-created boundaries.
Anya Saniukevich
Anya Saniukevichhas quoted4 years ago
When people reflect on how it feels when their experience is most positive, they mention at least one, and often all, of the following. First, the experience usually occurs when we confront tasks we have a chance of completing. Second, we must be able to concentrate on what we are doing. Third and fourth, the concentration is usually possible because the task undertaken has clear goals and provides immediate feedback. Fifth, one acts with a deep but effortless involvement that removes from awareness the worries and frustrations of everyday life. Sixth, enjoyable experiences allow people to exercise a sense of control over their actions. Seventh
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
Many people feel that the time they spend at work is essentially wasted—they are alienated from it, and the psychic energy invested in the job does nothing to strengthen their self.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
The term “autotelic” derives from two Greek words, auto meaning self, and telos meaning goal. It refers to a self-contained activity, one that is done not with the expectation of some future benefit, but simply because the doing itself is the reward.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
Almost any enjoyable activity can become addictive, in the sense that instead of being a conscious choice, it becomes a necessity that interferes with other activities.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
n some creative activities, where goals are not clearly set in advance, a person must develop a strong personal sense of what she intends to do.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
Enjoyment appears at the boundary between boredom and anxiety, when the challenges are just balanced with the person’s capacity to act.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quotedlast month
Complexity requires investing psychic energy in goals that are new, that are relatively challenging.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
Flow is important both because it makes the present instant more enjoyable, and because it builds the self-confidence that allows us to develop skills and make significant contributions to humankind.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
But anyone who has experienced flow knows that the deep enjoyment it provides requires an equal degree of disciplined concentration.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
It’s exhilarating to come closer and closer to self-discipline.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
These examples illustrate what we mean by optimal experience. They are situations in which attention can be freely invested to achieve a person’s goals, because there is no disorder to straighten out, no threat for the self to defend against
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
attention is our most important tool in the task of improving the quality of experience.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
The mark of a person who is in control of consciousness is the ability to focus attention at will, to be oblivious to distractions, to concentrate for as long as it takes to achieve a goal, and not longer. And the person who can do this usually enjoys the normal course of everyday life.
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchi
Lídia Tomoko Sawakuchihas quoted2 months ago
A person can make himself happy, or miserable, regardless of what is actually happening “outside,” just by changing the contents of consciousness
Soliloquios Literarios
Soliloquios Literarioshas quoted3 months ago
Bertrand Russell, one of the greatest philosophers of our century, described how he achieved personal happiness: “Gradually I learned to be indifferent to myself and my deficiencies; I came to center my attention increasingly upon external objects: the state of the world, various branches of knowledge, individuals for whom I felt affection.”
Soliloquios Literarios
Soliloquios Literarioshas quoted3 months ago
He concludes that the most important trait of survivors is a “nonself-conscious individualism,” or a strongly directed purpose that is not self-seeking. People who have that quality are bent on doing their best in all circumstances, yet they are not concerned primarily with advancing their own interests. Because they are intrinsically motivated in their actions, they are not easily disturbed by external threats. With enough psychic energy free to observe and analyze their surroundings objectively, they have a better chance of discovering in them new opportunities for action. If we were to consider one trait a key element of the autotelic personality, this might be it
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