I just finished reading Finding Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi on the psychology of engagement with everyday life and it’s a book I thoroughly enjoyed. It’s designed to show you how most of us go through our lives unaware of our emotions, which causes us to bounce between anxiety and pressures of work and passive boredom in our leisure activities.
To give you an example of one section that resonated with me is washing dishes. I know people who absolutely hate doing that task and will grumble the entire time. I personally am not fond of it either, but internally I always make tasks a competition with some strange internal goal. For washing the dishing I might see how I can arrange the dishes to turn the process into an assembly line or see how fast I can get it done. The same with unloading from a dishwasher. I try to see how few trips I can make to put them in the proper place.
This is just but one example of the book and it’s full of great insights on how to get into a state of “flow” where you forget your surroundings and focuses totally on the task at hand. I know most of you are developers and I feel like this book is one that many of you will enjoy.
For a little more on the book check out his Ted talk below:
If you’d like to get a copy of the book check out the Amazon details page and look under the “Used” page. I was able to pick up a paperback for around five bucks.