This was a new term to me and I decided to explore it.
The concept of flow comes from the field of psychology, first proposed by Mihaly Czikszentmihalyi. He pioneered work in the understanding of happiness, creativity, and human fulfillment.
Psychologists argue that the hallmark of flow is a feeling of spontaneous joy while performing a task. Other familiar terms of this concept include: in the moment, in the zone, or in tune.
At the heart of flow is the answer to Czikszentmihalyi’s question: “What makes a life worth living?”
How would you answer that question?
As a differentiating value, Flow means move or progress freely; or continuous progression.
Rather than focusing on tasks, this led me to the question: How can flow add value to a marriage?
Flow like Dancing
The image that comes to mind that might best portray flow in marriage is dancing.
Visualize a married couple moving easily together, in sync, and thoroughly enjoying the moment. It’s a wonderful thing to watch. It’s even better to do.
Imagine a husband and wife who are motivated to work together with a single-minded focus, harnessing their combined energies to perform their God-given purpose. This spans numerous areas including: raising a family, involvement in their church, running a business, volunteering in their community, or whatever else they feel called to do.
Doesn’t that sound like a positive and powerful combination? It feels like the perfect marriage of happiness, creativity, and fulfillment – as God meant it to be.
If this excites you, there are a few different ways you can build flow into your marriage.
Building Flow into Your Marriage
1) Leverage your strengths. As with any team, each person needs to know their areas of strength. It’s where they take the lead. But two people can’t lead at the same time. Where should the man lead? Where should the woman lead? Focus on your areas of strength.
2) Practice together. Once you know your role and where you lead, it’s important to practice it. Mistakes happen. Try again. Just like dancing, one must lead and the other must follow. In ballroom dancing, the man invites the woman to follow his lead. She in turn does not lean on him, rather holds her own weight. Practice hones your skills of working together, leading and following – in your areas of strength – while continuously progressing through the dance.
3) Celebrate improvements. At times you will naturally step on each other’s toes. Apologize and move on. One day you’ll notice less problems and more success. You are progressing forward. Don’t forget to celebrate! If practice makes perfect, the celebration makes certainty. Confidence grows with competence that you CAN do this together.
So…. flow in action is not just for couples on the TV show “Dancing with the Stars.” All married couples that desire to move freely in a continuous progression in their areas of strength can experience the value of flow. It also makes for a life worth living – together!
Note: If you are interested in learning to dance together as a married couple, I encourage you to contact Marriage Dance.
What other ways can you build flow into your marriage?
How can the value of flow benefit your marriage?
Today’s value was selected from the “Freedom-Prosperity” category, based on the e-book Developing Your Differentiating Value.