Have you ever been so intensively involved in doing something that time seems to fly by and all your cares seem to melt away for a few moments?
You were probably tapped into your flow state.
The flow state is an experience of deep focus, (like rapture!!) while you are performing an activity.
You can experience flow many places: During study, at work, while playing music or making love.
You also experience it during exercise, and this is where Aerial comes into its own. There are some good reasons why people so easily find this special state of absorption during aerial practice.
It truly is a RAPTUROUS EXISTENCE!
I would love to share with you the simple ingredients to help you get into your flow state.
You can find it as a student of aerial and, wonderfully, you can find it while you are actually teaching aerial. It’s such a special and wonderful state and you DESERVE to feel it!
In positive psychology the concept of flow states became popular thanks to research by Mihaly Csikszentmihályi and his colleagues. The flow state is an experience of deep focus and rapture while you are performing an activity.
This experience where you have full involvement and enjoyment of the activity is also known as being in ‘the zone’. It’s a pleasurable state where you have complete absorption and time flies.
You might already have your own regular special ‘thing’ you do which is conducive to the state of flow. You can experience flow many places: During study, at work, while playing music, making love or playing sport. You also experience it during teaching aerial, that’s where we can help you!
SIX MAGIC INGREDIENTS TO FLOW
Here are some ingredients that promote getting into the zone, and helping your students find their flow state too.
- First, you want to choose something that is enjoyable to you.
You’ll need to allow a little time to get into the state of flow too. It might take 15 minutes to achieve it. So it can’t be anything mega high intensity.
Then it’s about tinkering to find the right level of challenge for your own skill in that activity.
This is because the flow state sits right between a certain arousal and the sense of being in control. If the challenge is too hard then your lack of control will create rising anxiety which will deflect away any ecstatic flow state.
If the activity is too easy and boredom or apathy will result so the required arousal will dissipate. It needs to be an activity that requires complete concentration so that all those other everyday mundane thoughts switch off.
- The use of repeated patterns during aerial allows you to develop a relaxed sort of confidence. Create an aerial sequence for your students and repeat it a few times so they start to feel the mastery. When you feel you’ve clicked with it, you get the right mix of arousal, control and challenge this is the perfect platform for you to find your state of flow. Yoga and Pilates score high in flow rankings compared to other sports activities in general, partly because of the easing into repeated patterns.
- Melt the Ego. Aerial yoga in particular is ideal to move into flow state with the meditation, breathwork and relaxation promoting the melting of the ego. So do include these practices in your aerial yoga teaching.
- Self-consciousness will stop you achieving the flow state. The idea is that when doing your chosen practice you need to lose self-consciousness so your ego state softens. Then your fear of failure melts away and you can easily slip into delightful flow. This means you need to find a practice that feels supportive. As a teacher you can be supportive to your students and help them get in flow.
- Practices that allow you to commune with music while feeling the flow in your body. Chose music with a regular rhythm to help your students find their fabulous flowyness!
- Delightfully, it feels like Aerial Classes actually ‘cheat’ you into flow states! There is something amazing about the zero compression inversions and flood of happy hormones through your body after class that shifts you into an amazing flow state – It’s more than a little magical.
Are you curious about how our aerial graduate teachers speak about their practice and teaching time. Watch and you’ll sense how it is possible to find your flow with aerial.
We can’t wait to see you in the hammock getting smooth and slinky, and help you find your flow!