Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, defines flow as “…being fully immersed in what he or she is doing by a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and success in the process of activity,” in other words, optimal experience, engagement and skill. I have observed that the most effective communicators in social media are those that have a ‘flow’ mindset – Brian Solis, says it well, “continuity, cadence, and a voice that readers can connect with.” There is a fair amount of creativity that is being shared and responded to with genuine curiosity, but what I find the most fascinating, however, are the individuals that have found their unique voice in all the noise.
Finding the appropriate communities where one can leverage involvement and focus requires consistency, planning and intent. It’s time to start taking note of the business relationships that stem from online conversations.For relationships to flow, you need to invest some time in relevant conversations. For instance, yesterday, four ladies that I interact with on a weekly basis, finally scheduled some Skype time, #cafefab (stay tuned) – beyond amazing is that all of us commented immediately on how our voices represented our online personas: extrovert, grace, calm, and insightful. The warmth and generosity of spirit, as one of our gals described, was our fifth guest; because we had invested time and skill in cultivating an optimal experience. Mihaly was right – the energy and flow was meaningful.
So the question is can you engage in social media without causing disruption in your life? Yes. When I engage with new clients, I ask three questions before creating an action plan:
- Do you have a voice? People want to hear your voice.
- Have you identified your strategic goals for engaging online?
- Are you ready to meet some serious thought leaders? Think intention.
The technical skills will come; but, to achieve a flow that will benefit you personally requires focus and strategy. In my BlogTalkRadio show this morning, I interviewed, communication expert, Jill Royston, on how she discovered the meaning of flow in a very unexpected adventure while in London. Please listen to Jill’s amazing story as she encourages all of us to challenge our boundaries, be intentional and to open up to flow…
* For those who are wondering who extrovert, gracious, calm, and insightful, might be – girlfriends never tell, but if you follow us online, you’ll know who we are!