How to Get in the “Flow State” to Boost Creativity

Do the best creative ideas ever pop into your head effortlessly?

Maybe you are so inspired and focused that you seem to achieve more in one day than the entire month.

While on other days, you stare blankly at the screen, feeling stuck without knowing how to move forward.

It can be frustrating to lack ideas, especially when facing a deadline.

So why can’t you always feel inspired, and how do you spark your creativity?

First, what is the “flow state”?

You may have heard the term “flow state” before, but what does this mean?
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, a happiness researcher and author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, developed the term “flow state” to describe experiencing peak performance levels.

If you have had the euphoric experience of completely losing yourself in what you are doing and feel so focused and concentrated that nothing else matters, you have experienced this.

Here are 8 characteristics of being in the “flow state”:
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

  1. Complete concentration on the task.
  2. Clarity of goals and rewards in mind and immediate feedback.
  3. Transformation of time (speeding up/slowing down).
  4. The experience is intrinsically rewarding.
  5. Effortlessness and ease.
  6. There is a balance between challenge and skills.
  7. Actions and awareness are merged, losing self-conscious rumination.
  8. There is a feeling of control over the task.

Okay, so what is happening here?

Dr. Arne Dietrich, a professor at the American University of Beirut, created the term “transient hypofrontality.” During the “flow state,” your prefrontal cortex, the part of your brain where you perform higher cognitive functions, including memory and sustained attention, is downregulated.

So, what does this mean exactly?
In simple terms, you lose higher functionality, your brain redistributes its resources, and you cannot compute additional information.

In this state, you experience a sense of euphoria and peacefulness as you focus on the basics, only existing in the here and now, being one with what is around you.

You lose awareness of your surroundings and entirely lose track of time.

You may even have an influx of endorphins, dopamine, serotonin, anandamide, and oxytocin flooding your system, which is the biggest reward for your brain and the only time your brain produces all five of these pleasures hormones at once.

It is also important to mention that your brain waves change when you are in a “flow state” as the brain shifts from high Beta wave activity (ordinary consciousness) to slower Theta or Alpha brainwaves.

Why is this important?
Theta waves are where your brain moves into a dream state, and the best learning and intuition occur. And when experiencing Alpha waves, your brain is calm but fully alert, and you are entirely focused on the now.

That’s a lot of science. So, how do you experience this?

First, make sure you don’t get distracted. After being interrupted, it takes twenty-three minutes and fifteen seconds to return to your original focus, so you want to protect your time. For more ways to stay focused, read Step 5 in this article on how to Focus on What Matters.

Now let’s get into “the flow”.

Step 1: Ask yourself, “How might I”?

If you are looking to solve a challenge, ask yourself, “How might I solve this?” Your challenge mustn’t be so beyond your skill level that it feels overwhelming, so keep it simple by breaking down the question into smaller steps if needed.

Intentionally keep an open and curious mindset. A calm, relaxed mind sparks creativity.

Approach your question with expansiveness, high interest, persistence, and a growth mindset.

Research has also proven that if you are coming from a place of helping others vs. self-centeredness, you are more likely to experience the “flow state.”

Once you determine the challenge you would like to solve, relax and let it go before moving to Step 2.

Step 2: Create conditions to be in the “flow”

Your “flow state” will happen when you do activities you love. Your goal is to create conditions that enhance this. Below are some ideas that can help you get into this state; however, keep in mind that it is crucial to notice what works best for you.

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1. Move Your Body:
Get moving, preferably outside! Science has proven that walking releases endorphins, instantly boosting your mood.

If possible, surround yourself with nature. Take in some sunshine while doing yoga, going for a run, or hiking.

Breathe in the fresh air and enjoy nature’s wonders. Doing repetitive activities such as running, walking, swimming, cycling, or even cleaning can boost your creativity.

Pro-Tip: Walking while listening to an excellent training or some tunes is always my go-to for a creative boost! Extra bonus: Catch the replay of this training here.

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2. Change your environment:
Whether you are stuck in one room or can wander, changing your scenery allows your creative juices to flow.

Move some furniture or go to another location entirely and enjoy a new place!

Going a different route can create a sense of newness, excitement, and appreciation. Bonus, crank up the tunes and sing along! 

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3. Freewriting:
Getting your thoughts down on paper is a great way to empty your mind, express your thoughts, and clarify your ideas to start with a blank slate so you know what to do next.

Write everything you are thinking on paper without editing. Allow your pen to keep writing and brain dump whatever is in your mind.

4. Create something:
Do you paint, draw, or knit? Get out your favorite tools and create a masterpiece!

Do you play an instrument?

How do you express your creativity?

Allow yourself to get swept away in your zone of genius.

5. Listen to your favorite music:
Science has proven that listening to music can instantly boost your mood. It’s best to listen to music without vocals on repeat. Listening to Binaural Beats or Solfeggio Frequencies has similar results as meditation.

As a bonus, use noise-canceling headphones. Bose QuietComfort® 45 headphones are a great pick!

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6. Dance Party:
While you listen, dance – get silly, shake it out, and get into a peak creative state.

Having just a 2-minute dance party before working will give you the boost you need!

7. Laugh and have fun:
Find something that will make you laugh. Watch funny videos on you-tube or Tik-Tok, find a hilarious friend, or just anything that will give you a giggle. 

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8. Sleep:
Sleeping or taking a nap can instantly reset your mind and mood!

Sometimes you need a good rest to change your state, find clarity, and get into the flow.

When waking up, your creative brain is most attuned, and as you begin waking up, you move into a relaxed, awake state, further boosting creativity.

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9. Visualization l Meditation:
When you close your eyes and get centered, your brain also slips into an altered consciousness, a fertile ground for creativity.

10. Take a shower:
Ever notice that you sometimes come up with your best ideas in the shower? This relaxed moment may also help you get into the dreamy state you desire.

11. Brainstorming with others:
Brainstorming with others can also be an effective way to get inspired.

Bouncing creative ideas off another person can trigger new ways of thinking.

Pro Tip: Don’t try too hard as it is the opposite of what you want to achieve. Instead, be curious while experiencing the activities above. Become aware of what works well with ease.

Step 3: Create your habit

As you participate in one of the activities in Step 2, notice if you find yourself feeling “in the flow.” Which activity works best?

After getting into a creative state, as your ideas appear, be unattached to the outcome and allow your thoughts to surface like bubbles.

Make sure to record them immediately, as they will likely float away and burst in an instant.

Have a pen and paper handy, write in your phone notes, or use a voice memo to remember what comes up for you.

Make it a habit to intentionally create your “flow state” daily. If you struggle, ask yourself how to make this easier to implement and start from there.

Last, make sure to keep a consistent routine to stay balanced.

High energy and positive emotions increase problem-solving, information intake, and creativity by 10x as your brain releases chemicals critical to the creative process.

Limiting the amount and type of information you consume by reducing social media and other distractions allows your brain to focus on one thing at a time. Give your brain a rest by getting ample sleep, eating healthy food, and taking regular breaks. Last, cut out sugar, limit caffeine, and drink lots of water to avoid extreme highs and lows while fueling your focus.


Getting into your “flow state” is crucial to your creative thinking and productivity as an entrepreneur. By taking the steps above, you will be able to become so inspired so you can focus on creating your business with ease.

Step 1: Ask yourself, “How might I”?
Step 2: Create conditions to be in the “flow”
Step 3: Create your habit

What one step will you take to get in “flow” today? I would love to know, so make sure to leave a comment.

I look forward to hearing from you!
Michele x

PS. If you need help creating your business vision with an aligned strategy (you can stick with), email me with the PROGRAM.

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