What if you brushed your teeth every morning like you brush when you have a dentist appointment?
What if you drove every mile like you drive when there’s a state trooper behind you?
What if every workout session was as disciplined as on the days you have a hot date?
Is that kind of dedication and focus attainable? Could it be maintained?
Would it elevate us to better oral hygiene, safer driving and improved health? Would it improve us in other ways, too — ways we can’t even imagine?
I think I know the answer, but not because I’ve reached those levels or seen those possibilities up close. I think I know because some days — maybe for just a couple of hours — I can touch that plateau of living in the moment and being the person I strive to be. I’m certain most of us have been there and done that…for a little while, at least.
Psychologists call it a “flow state,” and athletes often refer to it as “the zone.” It combines full immersion and energized focus.
I think maintaining that flow state would be amazing. I think it would be re-defining. I think it would be transcending.
And it would probably be exhausting, too. But I bet it would be worth it, and I bet it would get easier over time until it eventually became … a new normal.
Imagine it. A life in which those sorts of standards are not exceptional, but normal and ordinary, everyday standards which we expect to meet and maintain. Failing to be totally in the moment, doing exactly what we should be doing when we should be doing it in the way it should be done, would be the outlier, the exception.
I think it would be the ultimate freedom. It would mean a life without guilt, with little or no waste and with greater opportunity for fun and leisure. We could take more time off and enjoy that time more because we’d have gotten so much accomplished through our ruthless efficiency, focus and dedication to this better life.
Of course, it would be extraordinarily difficult to achieve … maybe even impossible for most of us.
It would mean eliminating distractions, tuning out the noise and focusing only on what matters in that moment, at that place and time.
But a life without distraction could be narrow, possibly even claustrophobic. We may know what’s critical to our lives and what must be done to get us through the day, but without distractions, disruptions and the unpredictable, how would we find new interests and passions?
Maybe being in “flow” is the exact opposite of “going with the flow.”
That’s the kind of stuff I think about after too many late nights and early mornings.