Gradually Becoming Comfortable with the Uncomfortable

Gradually Becoming Comfortable with the Uncomfortable

Flow Performance Skills Sports

An important factor to enabling flow is being at ease in your environment. You need to be comfortable and relaxed. Though practice, it is possible to gradually get comfortable with the uncomfortable, allowing you to transcend fear and access flow when it counts the most.

Consider your comfort zone as a series of well demarcated circles around you like a target with you in the centre. As you push your boundaries ever so slightly, and step over the outer lines of the circles, you expand the circles diameter as a representation of growing the realm of what you are comfortable with. Pushing comfort zones brings things you once thought to be uncomfortable into your accepted reality. They allow us to stretch our boundaries and give rise to a new capacity that we have previously only dreamed of.

Let’s take surfing as an example. Many people start by surfing smaller waves in a safe environment. As they become comfortable with these waves they might drop into something a little bit bigger. As they keep testing the limits of what is comfortable, they integrate the experience of the larger waves into their normality. Before long they are surfing head high waves that they once looked upon with awe. It’s possible to keep surfing bigger and biggesurfingr waves, as they too get integrated in to what is considered normal. These continuing sequence of consistently pushing the bar and taking the challenge to the next level is the reason why adventure sports has been such a focus point for peak performance in this last decade. Each time they upgrade and widen the circle there is an element of fear to be overcome. It’s a fear of the unknown; a variety of manifested feelings derived from a multitude of ‘what if’ scenarios.

These fears are no more real than an oasis in the desert. When we apply the flow elements and maintain an honest reality of the situation we see the desert for what it is; we see the situation without the fear it once ignited. When we ‘keep it real’ and acknowledge that any uncomfortableness is simply a resistance to learning, or for some accepting that we are already more capable than we would like to think, we free our minds of the anxiety and fearful thoughts that would normally have us turning back. When we become comfortable with being uncomfortable, our perspective changes and we stop thinking and start doing. It is in this mental space that we find the release valve during this struggle and plug in to flow. As long as our skills have been adequately trained, this uncomfortableness is actually the perfect prequel to finding flow.

By regularly pushing the outer circles of our comfort zones, this feeling of unfamiliarity is something we get used to. If we are to strive for excellence, it is only a matter of time before we become uncomfortable, at which point it is essential we become at ease in this environment and enable flow to occur.

So, in practical terms, regularly do things that are out of your comfort zone. Learn to become comfortable with the uncomfortable, and learn to access flow when it counts the most.

 

joos-small  Aucamthor: Dr Joos Meyer – Flow Seeker
Editor: Cameron Norsworthy – Performance Director

 

Should We Always Be in Flow?

Should We Always Be in Flow?

Flow Performance Skills Sports Tips and Training

Flow is a place where external and internal elements align to create a state of peak performance. Purely by definition it is impossible to always be in flow.

For some, flow is an elusive state of being that they may have experienced once in their lifetime. It all happened so fast, was so blissful and almost indescribable in nature. And somehow it has been impossible to get back into. Often in these cases, it was pure luck that the necessary ingredients were available to create a flow state in that person. So in some ways you could argue that on a population level, flow is a statistically rare event. But it’s not to say that we can’t be in flow more often using the concepts applied through The Flow Centre.

Everyone goes through cycles of expansion and contraction. Taking a close look at your day I’m sure you can pinpoint the times you are the most alert, most active, and most productive. You could also pinpoint the times you feel more relaxed and calm. The same cycles appear on a weekly level where you might feel different on a Monday compared to a Friday. Now consider the seasonal changes in your state of mind. Winter is different from summer. These are all part and parcel of the normal ebbs and flows of life. Hence it’s not a reality to expect flow all the time, but we can definitely increase our chances by creating the most optimal platform during those times our mind naturally expands.

Using concepts from The Flow Centre it is possible to do two things. First is to increase the number of opportunities to access flow by creating the conditions to cultivate it. The second is to maximise the number of times we enter flow by seizing these opportunities when they present themselves.

So do we always want to be in flow?

As a flow seeker and a person who also seeks balance in life, for me personally the answer is no. For me, flow is an amazing state of being that is a very important component to a fulfilling life. It is these peak experience, which give life purpose and meaning. But at the same time I value and understand the importance of down time.

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We all need time to recharge, centre, and collect our energy. In fact this is a huge component to creating the foundations of flow. If our minds and bodies are constantly drained of energy, how could we expect to enter peak performance states? Part of the balance is to nurture important parts of life including relationships, physical health, emotional health, career and personal goals. This takes down time. It’s ok to cycle through periods of contraction. Often it’s important to let nature take its course and allow the process to happen. Consider these times as the foundations for your next expansion, which you can use as a launching pad to get more flow down the line.

 

In summary, getting caught up and anxious that we might not be feeling 100% all the time is counter productive. Expand, contract, and join us at The Flow Centre to get more flow in your life.

 

 

joos-small  Aucamthor: Dr Joos Meyer – Flow Seeker
Editor: Cameron Norsworthy – Performance Director