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Beyond Boredom and Anxiety: Experiencing Flow in Work and Play

Overview

" . . . they concentrate their attention on a limited stimulus field, forget personal problems, lose their sense of time and of themselves, feel competent and in control, and have a sense of harmony and union with their surroundings . . . they cease to worry about whether the activity will be productive or whether it will be rewarded . . . they have entered a state of flow."?Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

In a world organized around the assumption that 'serious' work should be grim and unpleasant, we strive to make our ...

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Overview

" . . . they concentrate their attention on a limited stimulus field, forget personal problems, lose their sense of time and of themselves, feel competent and in control, and have a sense of harmony and union with their surroundings . . . they cease to worry about whether the activity will be productive or whether it will be rewarded . . . they have entered a state of flow."—Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

In a world organized around the assumption that 'serious' work should be grim and unpleasant, we strive to make our lives more meaningful. Whether a line worker or a paper pusher, we find ourselves on a never-ending search for ways to counteract the boredom, anxiety, and alienation that our work-oriented society has become. But in this culture ruled by the pursuit of money, prestige, and pleasure, there are some individuals willing to give up material awards for the elusive experience of mere enjoyment. These are the rock-climbers, the dancers, the chess masters, and others who have sacrificed all for the power of play-these are the individuals who have entered the 'state of flow'.
Now in a special 25th anniversary edition and filled with brilliant wisdom and insights, Beyond Boredom and Anxiety offers a timeless introduction to the concept of flow and the scientific basis behind it-all through the work of one of the field's great scientists, Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi. Through real-life examples, discover how enjoyable activities provide a common experience-a satisfying, often exhilarating, feeling of creative accomplishment and heightened functioning-and under what conditions 'serious' work can also provide this intrinsic enjoyment.

For all of us who seek to recognize, understand, and apply this powerful motivational force, Beyond Boredom and Anxiety is a compelling look at the origins of flow and how its use can transform our lives.

[back jacket] Experience Flow at Work and in Play

Flow: A concentrated action in which the individual is aware of his actions but not aware of his awareness.

Beyond Boredom and Anxiety is the book that introduced the world to flow. This state of peak enjoyment, energetic focus, and creative concentration experienced by people engaged in 'adult play', has become the basis of a highly creative approach to living for millions of people around the globe.

"A very exciting book about the phenomenology of intrinsically motivated behavior. Csikszentmihalyi has done a service by directing attention to the importance of intrinsic motivation and its relationship to enjoyment and alienation."—Contemporary Psychology

"A stimulating and revolutionary book."—Journal of Individual Psychology

"Beyond Boredom and Anxiety constitutes a major contribution to and critique of the sociology of work."—Sociology

Describes the role of adult play in productivity, motivation & creativity.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A stimulating and revolutionary book." —Journal of Individual Psychology

"Beyond Boredom and Anxiety constitutes a major contribution to and critique of the sociology of work." —Sociology

"A very exciting book about the phenomenology of intrinsically motivated behavior. Csikszentmihalyi has done a service by directing attention to the importance of intrinsic motivation and its relationship to enjoyment and alienation." —Contemporary Psychology

Booknews
Originally published by Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1975, in the Jossey- Bass Behavioral Science Series. The author provides a new preface to this 25th anniversary edition in which he describes the genesis of his ideas, how these ideas have been developed by himself and others, and his feelings that the usefulness of this book continues<-->for those new to "flow" as well as for those familiar with the literature. Discussion encompasses enjoyment and intrinsic motivation, a theoretical model for enjoyment, and flow patterns in everyday life. Csikszentmihalyi is currently affiliated with Claremont Graduate University. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787951405
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/28/2000
  • Edition description: 25th Anniversary Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

MIHALY CSIKSZENTMIHALYI, Ph.D., professor and former chair of the department of psychology at the University of Chicago, is currently the Davidson Professor of Management at Claremont Graduate University and director of the Quality of Life Research Center. He is author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience (1990), Creativing: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention (1993), and Finding Flow: The Psychology of Engagement with Everything in Life (1997).

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Table of Contents

Preface to the 25th Anniversary Edition.

Acknowledgements to the First Edition.

Enjoyment and Intrinsic Motivation.

Rewards of Autotelic Activities.

Structure of Autotelic Activities.

A Theoretical Model for Enjoyment.

Enjoying Games: Chess.

Deep Play and the Flow Experience in Rock Climbing.

Measuring the Flow Experience in Rock Dancing.

Enjoying Work: Surgery.

Flow Patterns in Everyday Life.

Effects of Flow Deprivation.

Politics of Enjoyment.

Tests and Procedures Used in Microflow.

Experiments.

References.

Index.

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