“Enjoyment appears at the boundary between boredom and anxiety, when the challenges are just balanced with the person’s capacity to act” – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi – Flow
So with that in mind I’ve been considering how often I get bored and why!
I am – mostly – bored with my job. I haven’t been over the last month or so as I’ve been busy programming a system which has stretched my skills sufficiently within my capacity to act but not to the point where I couldn’t solve the problems – hence I experienced a fair amount of enjoyment!
I enjoy coaching. When I coach I experience Flow. I become completely absorbed in what I’m doing and the client in front of me. To see a client have a breakthrough moment – never mind how small – gives me great enjoyment in seeing their pleasure in achieving something for themselves which they didn’t feel was possible. Even when they don’t always ‘get it’ right away I get pleasure in helping them consider possibilities which they’d never thought of.
Carrying out a task can cease to be enjoyable when my capacity to act is thwarted either by my own inability or skill – whatever.
I am experiencing this in no small degree over my website! My inability to configure and customise the pages the way I want them has dumbfounded me and left me frustrated and – I will admit – rather cross. And since the only person I can get cross with is me, this has not been an enjoyable experience!! And has left me fairly anxious. I don’t enjoy ‘half-measures’!
My inability to ‘market’ myself is also rather irritating! Much to my surprise I don’t seem able to sell myself! So clearly I must now retrace my steps, reconsider this aspect of my goal and find a route which achieves what I want to achieve. There is no point in ‘banging my head against a brick wall’!
Then there is the house-hunting! Initially I found this boring, then I became anxious! A happy medium is what I required. Friends are taking up my cause – wow it’s lovely to know they are there. So great not to be doing this on my own. I am feeling valued and supported which is great. And actually having their support has now made the activity far more enjoyable!
I am not alone, I don’t have to do deal with all the issues of life alone. People are available and often want to help!
And all help is welcome and enjoyable.
It’s great letting them into one’s life!