mFLOW is a 6-week online course that expands upon one of the essential elements of the mPEAK course: Performance optimization through accessing flow states in high performance activities and everyday life. mFLOW introduces fresh teachings and practices that align with both traditional wisdom and the latest research on mindfulness and flow, including: Non-Dual Mindfulness Meditation, Taoist Philosophy of Wu-Wei, Chi Gong Movement Practice, Flow Psychology and the Improvisational Arts.
Flow is the mental state in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by the complete absorption in what one does, resulting in greater creativity and effectiveness.
Being mindful and being in flow are not the same experience. This course will teach mindfulness as a "primer" for the flow state that can increase your likelihood of shifting into this high performance state of mind. There is a Zen saying, "Enlightenment is an accident and meditation makes you accident prone." We can say the same thing for flow. While there is no "on switch" to control the flow experience, each class will teach new ways to use mindfulness to stack the decks in your favor of "getting into the zone".
mFLOW can help you leverage the power of mindfulness to:
- "Get into the zone" during performance activities and everyday moments
- Cultivate a flow mindset with greater openness, playfulness and purpose
- Organize your environment, daily tasks and set goals to induce flow states
- Get out of your own way and trust your ability
- Tap into your innate creative potential
- Learn the dynamics of relational and group flow
- Align with the rhythm of nature and the intuitive flow of your life
We've all had the experience of being in flow —maybe during a certain phase of life or while engaged in a particularly enjoyable or interesting activity. mFLOW is for those looking to leverage the power of mindfulness to create the conditions to drop into flow states more easily and with greater frequency. Designed for athletes, first responders and business leaders, mFLOW is also appropriate for anyone who wants to get out of their own way and perform at their peak, while under pressure, without sacrificing life-balance or well-being. Surfing giant waves, dealing with medical emergencies or speaking on the big stage aren't prerequisites to register. "Micro-Flow" can be experienced during exercise, art projects, gardening, conversation with friends, playing with your dog and any ordinary activity that you're fully present to and engaged with.
Graduates of the mPEAK program will find mFLOW to be an enriching continuation of their training and a pre-requisite for mPEAK certification. mFLOW is for beginners and advanced mindfulness practitioners alike. Previous meditation experience is not necessary to participate, but can facilitate a deeper learning experience.
Attendance in both the mFLEX and mFLOW courses counts toward the mPEAK participant attendance prerequisite for application to the mPEAK Coach Training Intensive (CTI).
Each of the six, 90-min sessions include: a new meditation, an experiential exercise, group coaching, a short didactic presentation on the weekly theme and home practices. Using the Zoom online platform, we've created an efficient, convenient and effective learning environment to deepen your mindfulness practice and explore the topic of flow as it relates to your own peak performance and optimal state of well-being. This course is experiential and highly participatory with regular opportunities to share your results, insights and challenges with like-minded participants. If you're simply looking to gain new information and inspiration, but not participate, this course is not for you. If you're looking to make real shifts in your life, deepen your mindfulness practice, tap into flow states and connect with a community of "bio-hackers", self-optimizers and performance enthusiasts., you are going to love this course!
- Class 1: Fundamentals of Mindfulness & Flow (An overview of the science, theory & practice of mindfulness and how it can help you harness the power of flow)
- Class 2: Priming for Flow (Hack the Flow State by uncovering your own personal triggers and setting up the external conditions required for flow)
- Class 3: Going With The Flow (Drop into the flow state by cultivating the internal capacity of balanced effort, focus, playfulness, and deep embodiment)
- Class 4: Self Awareness ("Get out of your own way" by letting go of unhelpful thoughts, beliefs and identities so you can trust the emergence of your conditioned talent & spontaneous wisdom)
- Class 5: Creative Flow (Open to the conditions for "ah-ha" moments, creative insights and inspiration around writing, art, hobby or creative work projects)
- Class 6: Relational Flow (Tap into flow with deep listening and mindful communication practices to help you connect and merge with the energy of a group, team or family)
Mindfulness & Flow Research
There have been preliminary studies of mindfulness and flow in academics, music, organizational development and sports. The science of mindfulness and flow is a new frontier and research is in the early stages. There have been promising studies by Neuroscientist, Judson Brewer of Brown University suggesting that the neural correlates of flow are linked to a decreased activity in the default mode network of the brain. Mindfulness practice has also been proven to decrease the activity in this same region, showing possible correlation between mindfulness and flow in the brain.
To date, studies of mindfulness and sports performance suggest that flow results from a complex interaction between internal and external variables, as well as various factors (preparation) involved in the lead up to an activity. It's been suggested that the primary mechanism in which mindfulness facilitates the activation of the flow state is through the regulation of attention and emotion. (Kaufman, Glass and Pineau)
Examples of how mindfulness helps you find flow include:
- Increasing capacity to focus attention on the task at hand
- Expanding situational awareness of an entire environment
- Cognitive flexibility to shift narratives and let go of negative thoughts
- The ability to accept difficult emotions
- Managing distraction, perfectionism, inner criticism and performance anxiety
- Non-attachment to expectations and outcomes
- Cultivation of positive emotions such as joy, optimism, purpose and playfulness
- Loss of self-consciousness and identification with being "a performer"
Registration & Fees
General Registration Cost: $400
A $50 discount is available to the following:
- mPEAK Graduates
- MBSR Graduates
- MSC Graduates
- First Responders
- Healthcare Workers
- UCSD Employees/Students