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Author David Foster Wallace once pointed out that “the most obvious important realities are often the ones that are hardest to see and to talk about.” And this is certainly true in science. In my experience, the questions that reveal hidden universes are often the ones that are so unsexy, simple and basic that they manage to avoid detection for eons. This month’s newsletter is about one of those questions: Specifically, what’s Love got to do with IT?

The IT in the question is “Flow.” While the relationship between our most powerful emotion and our most potent state of consciousness seems to be the kind of basic question someone would have asked already, but that’s not the case at all. Turns out this is one of those basic questions that has eluded our attention… until now.

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Grit is the term psychologists use to describe abiding perseverance. It’s sort of motivation writ large — not just the energy it takes to push through a difficult task, but the energy needed to push through years of difficult tasks.

As I’m starting in on my fourth book in five years, I’ve been thinking about grit a lot lately. I’ve also been talking to a ton of folks about it. In fact, pretty much everyone I’ve spoken with over the past six months has fielded a question or two. …

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About five years ago, I started thinking long and hard about a very specific type of creativity. Unlike most researchers, I was less interested in exploring the day-to-day puzzle of making something out of nothing and more about the equally baffling mystery of how to do this over a lifetime. Long Haul Creativity is how I’ve come to think of this topic.

Over the past few years, this topic has become a bit of an obsession. I’ve talked about it with everyone I know and have come to realize the answers I’ve gotten apply to far more folks than just writers. These days, creativity is a buzz word in just about every field. …

9 Social Triggers for Entering Flow

“Flow” is a word thrown around a lot in business books. I’ll simplify it for your quickly: Flow is an optimal state of consciousness, a peak state where we both feel our best and perform our best. It is a transformation available to anyone, anywhere, provided that certain initial conditions are met.

Flow might be the most desirable state on earth; it’s also the most elusive. While seekers have spent centuries trying, no one has found a reliable way to reproduce the experience, let alone with enough consistently to radically accelerate performance.

Except action and adventure sports athletes. Quite simply, the zone is the only reason these athletes are surviving the big mountains, big waves, and big rivers. Advancements in brain-imaging technologies like fMRI and consumer “quantified self” devices allow us to apply serious metrics where once was merely subjective experience. …


Steven Kotler

Author. Executive Director at the Flow Research Collective. Gravity Lover.

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