In Dorothy's story, she discovers her red shoes can turn her dream of returning home into reality. Happiness is essential, but we must find new ways to achieve it. By accessing the flow, a state of ecstasy, we can feel true happiness. To achieve the flow, we must engage in challenging tasks that require our skills. Our decisions are also related to our happiness and the flow. By choosing something we like and finding new ways to approach it, we can use what makes us happy to feel even happier.
In the Wizard of Oz, Dorothy receives the astonishing red shoes as a gift for accidentally killing a bad witch, and it takes a long journey for her to discover that the same red shoes could turn her biggest dream into reality; to get back to home. When thinking about this story, I asked myself “What is my red shoe? What is the thing that I already have that brings me joy?”, and that question left me with two words: happiness and decision.
I will clarify for those kids that may be lost in routine and don’t get what is happiness and how to spot it. We have all heard about happiness and probably even consider it the most important thing in our lives, but I noticed sometimes we forget about real happiness. Sometimes we get used to believing we’re always in the best possible place we can be, and forget how we may need something else.
We cannot forget that what makes us happy can change, so we must keep an eye on how we feel when doing what we presumably love. Happiness is basically a state of well-being, so it should guide you toward health and away from dangers, translating; should make you feel happier!
- Does it take too long to feel the old excitement I was used to when doing something I like?
- I’m not enjoying what I used to like so much?
Depending on your answers, it may be the right time to try new things to see if you can feel a well-being state more often.
I Know, It’s Hard…
Sometimes we’re so focused on our routine that it seems impossible to find something that makes us feel different, but (believe me!) it’s possible. Don’t know what makes your life worth living it’s a good reason for fear, but you’re not the first person to ask this question and a guy named Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi already did our homework and found out that the secret of happiness is the flow.
Csikszentmihalyi did a search to discover where in everyday life we feel happy and he figured out that we are happy when we find ourselves submerged in a mental state in which we feel we’re not inside our everyday routines; the ecstasy — stepping into an alternative reality — it’s where we find happiness.
We are already familiar with this idea of ecstasy. We learn about the big projects of ancient civilizations, not about the average day. We are summoned to all the breathtaking choices taken from others — the right note in a song, the right strength in a game, et cetera.
To achieve this level of performance it’s imperative that the individual it’s completely engaged in what it’s being done; in such an engagement that the individual has no more attention for the outside world. There, we find the flow experience.
So, we already know that we will be inside true happiness when the flow it’s accessed, but how can we access it and what about all the other experiences?
What Can I Feel In Different Kinds Of Experiences?
Different tasks rely on different skills, which can make them challenging. In our seek for happiness, we must find activities that we’re focused on and happy doing, feeling disconnected from our normal world and connected to somewhere else. If you want to feel happy, try to think about what you can do considering the elements of the image (how challenging and how much ability it’s necessary?)
And How It’S My Flow Related To My Decisions?
Completely related! By, for example, deciding to learn how to play a song instead of listening to it will keep you concentrated and amazed by something you already love. By deciding to approach what you like in different ways you can fulfil this feeling of boredom, unhappiness and frustration.
But How Can I Do It?
So now you know some concepts of happiness and know what is the flow, but how is this all connected to your ruby slippers, that will realize your biggest dream?
As I said, the ruby slippers Dorothy wore were never considered small or unimportant, Dorothy just had no idea of their potential, and I believe the same happens in our lives. We neglect what has the potential to make us feel happy and don’t try to potentialize it. So here are some things you could do to change it:
- Choose something you believe you like (sports, music, studying, playing, etc)
- Find the moments you’re able to like it (I like to watch series or make-up tutorials at home)
- Try to give yourself different ways to approach what you like so much (form a band, go to the park draw rocks, draw the clothes you would like to wear)
The key is to use what you already know can make you happy to feel even happier, always trying to increase your ability and make it more challenging!
After you’ve done it, congrats! Then, the only thing you will need to worry about is how to put more and more of everyday life in that flow channel.