The pleasant Flow of Contributing

Today was a usual therapy day. Some other days, I am more into business coaching and building our new e-business. This morning, I felt peaceful, happy and calm. I know this feeling. It often occurs to me while working with clients. And my 10 o’clock client, mentioned the same: working with people makes him feel calm and good. Why is this so, I wondered?

  1. First, I remembered that I started to develop this pleasant feeling right after my first years of being a professional. Probably one needs to build ‘competence’ first, to feel selfconfident in what one is doing. So, if you read this and are still building competence in your profession, just accept that learning takes effort. And that there will be a day where you feel ok with what you do. Your customers will let you know when you do a good job and that will reinforce you.
  2. Second, this pure concentration on one person – no phone calls, no interruptions – gives our brain the time to tune in, the time to focus and as we know from litterature: focus is that what provokes “flow” in a human beings. Focussing relieves stress & tension and opens us up for joy. I remember from my philosophy classes the quote of Jean-Paul Sartre, in “L’Être et le Néant”, describing self-consciousness as  “Conscience de soi de quelque chose” (being aware of yourself through being aware of something).  Now, years later, I start to see that we become more ourself, indeed, when we focus on something else with dedication and concentration.
  3. Third, in working with clients, one knows -after years of training- that one can only focus on one small concrete result at the time. Your client needs this, or (s)he would get confused or lost in your words. Since you focus on small & measurable results, you automatically start to do that what is good for yourself too:  breaking big & complex projects into small measurable steps, so that you setup for visible success. Focussing on big & vague goals leads to confusion and “Learned Helplesness“.
  4. Fourth, the feeling of contribution, is probably another important contributor to happiness. By focussing on helping others, one feels useful. And we are born “social animals“. We need contribution for our own personal survival and satisfaction. We exist partially in the eyes of the others, we become more ourselves through adding value to others.

There are certainly more factors that have contributed to my happy feeling this morning. I just wrote about those that came first into my mind. Paul

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