Flow state

“Don’t wait for inspiration, it comes while one is working.”

I get really focused and tuned into my work lately after 5 p.m., when all my colleagues have went home, there are no more meetings, no more conversations or distractions, only full attention on my work.

Past work hours is the only time I can get work done.

I was refactoring code with ChatGPT, and organizing and structuring everything, so that it's up to my standards. I enjoyed the process of turning messy code with bad practices, into something that's readable, clean, and follows best practices.

Flow sate is an exhilarating feeling. The flow of time ceases to exist and there is nothing else but what's in front of you.

A couple observations for what might have influenced me to enter a flow state.

It was intrinsically motivated because I have an inner desire to make things organized and clean.

I personally wanted to do it because it teaches me best practices along the way.

It was the right balance between skill and challenge, it was at the edge of my skills, and it wasn't very challenging to the point of demotivating me. (ChatGPT played a role)

I set clear end goals. I knew what I wanted the code to look like.

It was a conducive environment because it was quiet, and there were no distractions.

I broke the task into smaller parts, I worked on one function at a time.

I didn't focus on reaching a flow state, it happened naturally.

I was given a deadline, and that provided a boost of motivation to work on the task

Csíkszentmihályi identified 9 components for the flow experience

  • Intense and focused concentration on the present moment
  • A loss of reflective self-consciousness
  • A sense of personal control or agency over the situation or activity
  • A distortion of temporal experience, as one's subjective experience of time is altered
  • Experience of the activity as intrinsically rewarding, also referred to as autotelic experience
  • Immediate feedback
  • Feeling the potential to succeed
  • Feeling so engrossed in the experience, that other needs become negligible