photographer, videographer, writer

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Flow-state

So a few years back I was taking a class called Happiness Basics. One of the discussions we had was about achieving flow. Essentially this is when you reach single-minded focus on something you are doing, where time stands still, the world around you disappears, and all you know is what you are currently doing. You essentially disappear into a little bubble of enjoyment and the rest of the world disappears for a while. It can be a wonderful zen-like state, but it can also be extremely disorienting when you are finally jolted back to reality. For me it sometimes feels hypnotic. I experience flow mostly with photography, reading, writing, and gardening. Some people achieve flow in gardening, or sewing, or fishing, or running, or painting, or working out, or fixing mechanical things, or whatever thing you can really get absorbed in doing. While flow is often associated with positive things, it can happen in more negative circumstances as well, this article from PositivePsychology.org covers both the positive and negative aspects of flow-state.

Recently, as in like 2 minutes ago, I realized I'm achieving flow in something new. Video editing. I was pretty busy today, so I didn't get much video edited. About 45 minutes ago I went to bed so that I could get a blog post written, read for a while, and then go to sleep. But when I opened my laptop to write, the program on the screen was Davinci Resolve, the software I use for video editing. All my footage was sitting in the timeline, just waiting to be edited (it'll probably go up tomorrow, for the record). I thought to myself "oh, I'll just watch through the last few clips so I know what I've got left to edit tomorrow morning."

So now, I'm writing my blog post nearly an hour later since I immediately got sucked into editing video, not just watching it. Anyway, flow is a really interesting thing to experience. Almost everyone seems to experience it in one form or another, and it can be really fascinating to start noticing when you experience flow, and start to notice how it feels to be in that state.