Politics is the highest form of flow

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What if politics was a flow experience? An activity we are so engaged in that we lose a sense of time & space.

The psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, suggests politics might be the highest form of flow.

I see 3 reasons why being engaged in politics can be flow at its best:

1) Engage in high complexity
'Politics' is not one thing, one activity. But what distinguishes it from other domains, is that other people, groups of people will be involved. And that in itself makes it more complex than activities that only involve you or the closest people around you:

"politics can be one of the most enjoyable and most complex activities available to the individual, for the larger the social arena one moves in, the greater the challenges it presents. A person can deal with very intricate problems in solitude, and family and friends can take up a lot of attention. But trying to optimize the goals of unrelated individuals involves complexities an order of magnitude higher.” 'Flow' p. 190

If the complexity/challenge of politics is met with high capability, then flow emerges (and not anxiety).

2) Be a flow model
'Be a role model!' can sound like yet another duty.

How about: Be a flow model?

  • Small children being so absorbed in a game, they are fully present and are loving it. Heart-warming.
  • A highly-skilled violinist plays a solo, totally in flow, so much that it is contagious. Inspiring.
  • A public speaker, with deep conviction, credibility, and connected with their audience. Electrifying.

Being a role model is thinking about and playing a role you want to model.

Being a flow model is going for the challenges that matter to you, that are difficult but not completely out of reach. Not thinking and playing a role, but being engaged in challenges. Knowing that people around you will notice and, perhaps, want to have a piece of that.

3) Shape conditions of flow
How can your work help create environments where flow is more likely to emerge?

We know in which conditions flow emerges.

So, if we're leading a team, how can shape our work & how we work so that people can more easily get into flow.

If we're shaping policy, we have an opportunity to shape these flow conditions on a much bigger scale.

🎙️ My latest podcast

Gaia van der Esch - How Women are Redefining Leadership
About my guest I talk with Gaia van der Esch about expanding our understanding of what leadership looks like. Gaia is the author of the new book ‘Leading our Way’ that features the stories of contemporary iconic women leaders: Christiana Figueres, Gitanjali Rao, Becky Sauerbrunn, Diane von Furstenberg, Tawakkol Karman,

📚 What I read & listen to

More podcasts this week, especially:

#395 – Walter Isaacson: Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Einstein, Da Vinci & Ben Franklin
Listen to this episode from Lex Fridman Podcast on Spotify. Walter Isaacson is an author of biographies on Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Leonardo da Vinci, and many others. Please support this podcast by checking out our sponsors: - MasterClass: https://masterclass.com/lexpod to get 15% off - NetSuite: http://netsuite.com/lex to get free product tour - BetterHelp: https://betterhelp.com/lex to get 10% off - ExpressVPN: https://expressvpn.com/lexpod to get 3 months free - Shopify: https://shopify.com/lex to get $1 per month trial Transcript: https://lexfridman.com/walter-isaacson-transcript EPISODE LINKS: Walter’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/WalterIsaacson Walter’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/walter_isaacson Walter’s Website: https://isaacson.tulane.edu Walter’s Books: Elon Musk: https://amzn.to/48aWSZC The Code Breaker: https://amzn.to/3EAa0cU Leonardo da Vinci: https://amzn.to/3RlFICB The Innovators: https://amzn.to/45R8gs4 Steve Jobs: https://amzn.to/3P9Ak2B American Sketches: https://amzn.to/45LM4PN Einstein: https://amzn.to/3r6Ttu6 Benjamin Franklin: https://amzn.to/44NobWW Kissinger: https://amzn.to/3RdTA1u The Wise Men: https://amzn.to/45LQDJX PODCAST INFO: Podcast website: https://lexfridman.com/podcast Apple Podcasts: https://apple.co/2lwqZIr Spotify: https://spoti.fi/2nEwCF8 RSS: https://lexfridman.com/feed/podcast/ YouTube Full Episodes: https://youtube.com/lexfridman YouTube Clips: https://youtube.com/lexclips SUPPORT & CONNECT: - Check out the sponsors above, it’s the best way to support this podcast - Support on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/lexfridman - Twitter: https://twitter.com/lexfridman - Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lexfridman - LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lexfridman - Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lexfridman - Medium: https://medium.com/@lexfridman OUTLINE: Here’s the timestamps for the episode. On some podcast players you should be able to click the timestamp to jump to that time. (00:00) - Introduction (02:04) - Difficult childhood (19:09) - Jennifer Doudna (22:05) - Einstein (27:24) - Tesla (44:29) - Elon Musk’s humor (48:39) - Steve Jobs’ cruelty (52:02) - Twitter (1:04:12) - Firing (1:06:56) - Hiring (1:15:59) - Time management (1:23:43) - Groups vs individuals (1:27:30) - Mortality (1:31:01) - How to write (1:52:00) - Love & relationships (1:56:55) - Advice for young people
#700 - Dr Andrew Huberman - The Secret Tools To Hack Your Brain
Listen to this episode from Modern Wisdom on Spotify. Dr Andrew Huberman is a neuroscientist, Associate Professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine and a podcaster. It has never been so easy and also so difficult to remain healthy and perform at your best. The right tools and insights we all need to avoid pitfalls and maximise our outcomes are thankfully at our finger tips, and today we get to go through some of Dr Huberman’s favourites. Expect to learn how breathing can change the shape of your face, what Andrew thinks of the “Huberman Husbands” kink, just how bad vaping actually is for you, how to increase your willpower using science, what everyone misunderstands about stress, his opinion on Tom Segura’s transformation, how to be more productive and much more…⁣ Sponsors: Get 10% discount on Marek Health’s comprehensive blood panels at https://marekhealth.com/modernwisdom (use code: MODERNWISDOM) Get a Free Sample Pack of all LMNT Flavours with your first box at https://www.drinklmnt.com/modernwisdom (automatically applied at checkout) Get 20% discount on your Mud/Wtr subscription & freebies at https://mudwtr.com/modernwisdom (automatically applied at checkout) Get 5 Free Travel Packs, Free Liquid Vitamin D and more from AG1 at https://drinkag1.com/wisdom (discount automatically applied) Extra Stuff: Get my free Reading List of 100 books to read before you die → https://chriswillx.com/books/ To support me on Patreon (thank you): https://www.patreon.com/modernwisdom - Get in touch. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chriswillx Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/chriswillx YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/modernwisdompodcast Email: https://chriswillx.com/contact/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

🖋️ My favourite quote

At the end of every road you meet yourself - S.N. Behrman