I talk a lot with clients about finding the thing that when you are doing it, nothing else matters. The thing that you are able to get completely lost in and whatever stress, anxiety, or sadness you were feeling prior melts away at least while you are participating. This “thing” should be the activity that time seems to fly by during and the next time you look at the clock an hour has passed and it seems as though it were minutes. We call this experience “flow”, the experience of everything seeming in its place for the moment and you feel lost in your experience.
A problem I have always had is that I have too many of these and never enough time or money for them all. However, many people tell me they have trouble finding just one. For me, my most loved activity that I experience “flow” is glassblowing. I recognize this is somewhat abnormal, but there is something about the molten glass, the colors, and the smell of burning wood that I just get lost in. I or others have reported experiencing this in activities such as painting, exercise, yoga, running, drawing, cooking, writing, gardening, hiking, biking, reading, cleaning/organizing, knitting, crocheting, scrap-booking, playing an instrument, dancing…the list keeps going.
The health benefits of having something time-stopping that you absolutely love are huge! We feel happier, younger, experience more positive emotions, have healthier bodies and brains when we have these experiences regularly. If you don’t know what you like, start experimenting! Take a local class in something you’ve never tried before, or something you haven’t done in a long time. Ask others in your life what brings them joy and what they spend their leisure time doing. However, remember that just because someone else finds an activity gratifying, it does not mean that you will find the same. Our “flow” activities are often unique to us and may take some time to find. Don’t give up though, once you find your passion, it will seem odd that you went without it for so long.