Have you ever lost track of time at work because you were so engaged in what you were doing?

We call this being in the flow.

We all want to feel engaged at work, not only because our performance naturally increases when we’re engaged but because we want to find meaning in our work and ultimately be happy at work. Based on the work of Hungarian psychologist, Professor Mihaly Csikszentmihaly “Flow is the mental state of operation 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”. Daniel Goleman found that even though Mihaly calls Flow the “secret to happiness”, only about 20 percent of people have flow moments at least once a day.

At Beaconforce, we want to change that by providing you with a tool that can measure and identify flow continuously.

The concept of Flow

When researching this topic in depth, Mihaly Csikszentmihaly’s objective was to identify what the elements that can create this state are, and if it can be replicated at work. He went to interview many professionals in high performance activities in which flow is commonly talked about, such as athletes, chess players, artists, and musicians.

He found that, across all these disciplines, the same elements were required to get into the Flow state. They are:

  • High level of competence
  • High level of challenge
  • Voluntary of choice
  • Immediate feedback or retro-action
  • Loss of self-consciousness

Moreover, all these individuals experienced the same feelings while in the flow. They all felt:

  • A distorted sense of time
  • A complete exclusion of distractions
  • No concern of failure
  • And optimal performance

Using the Beaconforce app you’ll be able to identify when you are in this state of mind, and most importantly, what you’re missing in your work environment to get there.

The Flow in your Beaconforce Dashboard

At Beaconforce, we leveraged Mihaly’s findings to be able to not only measure flow at work but also identify if your work environment has what is needed to create it. We will present you these insights in a visual graphic called the Flow Diagram. In this visual you will see different areas that represent your state of mind at work, including the flow.

It’s good to remember that it’s impossible to be in the flow zone permanently so being able to see your evolution and in which state of mind you spend the most time in will give you an insight into your development and potential at work. For example, if you find yourself often in the boredom zone it may be time to take over a new challenge or move up the ladder in the organisation.

Each colored area represents a different emotional state:

  • Stress Area – Red
  • Learning Area – Orange
  • The Flow – Yellow
  • Performance Area – Green
  • Boredom Area – Blue

To keep your dashboard updated, you simply need to interact with your app to provide our algorithm with the information it needs to calculate where you are on the Flow diagram.

Remember your answers to these questions will always be kept anonymous. Our algorithm only uses your answers to extract insights and display them in a visual way in your dashboard, in this case in the form of your flow diagram.