If you lined me up with five other people randomly selected from your friend group and rated us on most "chill," I'm more than certain that I wouldn't come out on top. It's not that I'm uptight, just not super zen. The idea of meditation has always been terrifying for me. It seems that there is a right and wrong way to do it. I imagine some yoga teacher in Lululemon pants and a high pony is standing over me telling me that I'm doing it wrong. Lately I've come to the realization that the best way to get my Type A tendencies in check isn't to light some incense and stand on my head, or to picture a drop in a puddle, or to imagine the universe in my belly button. It's simply to get into FLOW.
What is flow you ask? Flow is a psychological phenomenon in which a person is totally and completely immersed in what they are doing. The mental state of flow is characterized by energized involvement, focus, and total peace. It is being totally absorbed in what you're doing so that you lose your own self-awareness. It is being so zen that you forget the pressures of time, outside stresses, and negative emotions. Psychologists believe that the ideal state of flow comes when you're immersed in something that is challenging, but that you feel you have competence in doing. Passive tasks like watching TV don't get you into a flow state. Additionally, you must be engaged in the activity for intrinsic purposes only, not to receive some type of outside reward or recognition.
So what get in me in the flow? Writing, if doing it just for myself. Reading something challenging if for no other purpose but to learn. Trying a new recipe in the kitchen. Painting! Knitting! Planting something! Problem solving with Celene on business matters! The options are endless. Flow is my meditation. Is it chill? Maybe not. But really, neither am I. And that's fine.