In Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s 1992 book, “Flow – The Psychology of Happiness”, he traces the way that agencies that seek powers for specific purposes – states, churches, employers, retailers and many more, exploit human consciousness and control human behaviour to their own ends. His definition of stress is that it occurs when the individual looses control their life, resulting in a belief that they are essentially powerless. His solution is for the individual to regain their perceived loss of power. Many of us try to do this by changing our external life circumstances, perhaps by, getting a new job, moving house, having children or getting married or divorced. Unfortunately, Csikszentmihalyi says that this will not remove the source of stress, because by fulfilling what are probably our “heart’s desires” we are actually further “buying in” to the system that is controlling us and was the cause of our stress in the first place.
We NEED to control our conscious awareness he says! For him the solution to our problems lies in our ability to control our own consciousness awareness.
Break free of control!
Regarding control, he says:-
“The most important step in emancipating oneself from social controls is the ability to find rewards in the events of each moment. If a person learns to enjoy and find meaning in the ongoing stream of experience, in the process of living itself, the burden of social controls automatically falls from one’s shoulders. Power returns to the person when rewards are no longer relegated to outside forces”…
Freedom without control …
Flow and the Foundations of Positive Psychology: The Collected Works of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (25 Jul 2014) is available from Amazon
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