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Being Present: Creating More 'Flow' Moments In Our Daily Life

USU Extention

With our overly busy lives and our constant desire for distraction, the concept of being present is more important now more than ever, according to a family life specialists at Utah State University. That's why Dr. Dave Schramm wants people to learn more about flow

What is flow you ask?

“So flow is that moment when you are so absorbed in an activity that you almost lose track of time of what you are doing because your full attention is immersed in that activity,” he said.

Everyone has had these experiences but our daily routine doesn’t come with huge amounts of these types of experiences. But Schramm said we can create more flow moments while we go about our day, we just need to utilize the concept of flow. 

“We’re living in a day of age where we’re easily distracted, there’s so many things that are demanding our attention,” he said. “And even when we are involved in an activity, research shows that about 47 percent of the time we are actually thinking about something other than what we are doing. And so flow is the opportunity to immerse yourself – for some people it may be gardening, or playing the piano or writing or even reading a book. For my wife, maybe it’s decorating the house [for] Christmas. She just gets so involved in it and three hours have gone by. It’s so good for us because we are immersed in it instead of thinking of about other things and worrying, we are immersed in what we are doing.”

Schramm says this practice is so necessary for today’s society. We are so worried about what else we have to do or what else is going on that we don’t give the task at hand it’s proper attention. Schramm gives us a relatable example on what not to do.

“We were at Disneyland, you know, the 'happiest place on earth,'” he said. “And I remember that night where they do the fireworks and I was so filled with anxiety that we had to get out of there, right, we have to avoid the crowds. We actually left right in the middle of the fireworks. I didn’t immerse myself in that moment. I said, ‘Ok, we got to get going because the crowds are going to be…’ You know, we do that so much in our lives with so many things instead of savoring the moment and living right there in the moment. It’s so beneficial for us.”

To read more about Schramm’s concept of utilizing flow in your life, click here