Review: Flow Research Collective

Bonafide in The Art of The Flow

I will persist until I succeed.

I was not delivered unto this world in defeat, nor does failure course in my veins. I am not a sheep waiting to be prodded by my shepherd. I am a lion and I refuse to talk, to walk, to sleep with the sheep. I will hear not those who weep and complain, for their disease is contagious. Let them join the sheep. The slaughterhouse of failure is not my destiny.

I will persist until I succeed.

OG Mandino

First as always Dear Readers i trust everyone is safe. Second, whilst i have not written i in a while that does not mean i have not been “thoughting” of things to write about for You Oh Dear Reader. Third, software is hard and there was a glitch in the matrix and my site was down for a bit.

Starting last year on April 24th, 2023, with Matthew McConaughey’s “Art Of Living” worldwide class that was, in fact, a precursor to a class with him and Tony Robbins dedicated to looking into yourself and figuring out exactly what you want – sound familiar? However, this was not for me to use for others but for me – period. I knew that this was a stepping stone to the class that I was going to write about, a class given by the Flow Research Collective. After i took “The Art of Living” class i knew a Flow Research Collective Class was starting over “The Holidays” in December 2023. Knowing full well that i would be in the throes of work at my new gig and also “The Holidays”, i told myself just like i tell others: “The best time to plant a tree is yesterday. The best time to plant a tree is Now.” So i registered for the 9 week class. At the time, i was very familiar with Stephen Kotler, the founder of FRC given i had read many of his books:

  1. Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think” (2012) – Co-authored with Peter H. Diamandis
  2. Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World” (2015) – Co-authored with Peter H. Diamandis
  3. The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance” (2014)
  4. Tomorrowland: Our Journey from Science Fiction to Science Fact” (2015) – Co-authored with Peter H. Diamandis
  5. Stealing Fire: How Silicon Valley, the Navy SEALs, and Maverick Scientists Are Revolutionizing the Way We Live and Work” (2017) – Co-authored with Jamie Wheal
  6. The Future is Faster Than You Think: How Converging Technologies Are Transforming Business, Industries, and Our Lives” (2020) – Co-authored with Peter H. Diamandis
  7. The Art of The Impossible: A Peak Performance Primer” (2021)
  8. Gnar Country: Growing Old and Staying Rad” (2023)

I have read all of the ones concerning human performance.

Why did I push this off till now? Well, denial is an amazing psychological force.

In the realm of human performance, few concepts hold as much promise and intrigue as the state of flow. Coined by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, flow refers to a mental state of complete immersion and energized focus in an activity, where individuals experience profound enjoyment and peak performance. Flow is not just a fleeting moment of productivity; it’s a state where time seems to warp, self-vanishes, and optimal performance becomes effortless. Harnessing the power of flow can unlock human potential in remarkable ways.

The Flow Research Collective (FRC) is an organization that has made it its mission to understand, master, and utilize the principles of flow to help individuals and organizations achieve peak performance consistently. Founded by Steven Kotler, a prolific author and leading expert on the subject, and Rian Doris, the CEO, the FRC has journeyed from humble beginnings to becoming a powerhouse in the field of human performance enhancement.

Origins: The Spark of Inspiration

The story of the Flow Research Collective begins with Steven Kotler’s own personal journey. Struggling with Lyme disease, Kotler found himself facing physical and cognitive limitations that profoundly impacted his life and work. Determined to overcome these challenges, he delved deep into the science of human performance, stumbling upon the concept of flow.

Kotler’s fascination with flow led him to explore its intricacies, drawing from neuroscience, psychology, and various research fields. As he began understanding flow mechanics and its transformative potential, he realized the need to share this knowledge with the world. Thus, the seeds of the Flow Research Collective were planted.

Building Momentum: From Vision to Reality

Armed with a vision to unlock human potential through flow, Kotler embarked on a journey to build the Flow Research Collective from the ground up. Collaborating with like-minded individuals and experts in various domains, he set out to create a platform that would serve as a hub for research, education, and practical flow applications.

The early days were marked by relentless dedication and a commitment to excellence. Kotler and his team immersed themselves in the latest scientific literature, conducted experiments, and engaged with practitioners from diverse fields to gain insights into the nature of flow. Through trial and error, they refined their methodologies, developing frameworks and tools to help individuals cultivate flow and achieve peak performance.

Cultivating a Community: The Power of Connection

Central to the Flow Research Collective’s success is its ability to foster a vibrant and engaged community of flow enthusiasts. Through workshops, seminars, online courses, and collaborative projects, the FRC has brought together individuals from all walks of life who share a common passion for unlocking human potential.

The community’s collective nature has been instrumental in accelerating learning and innovation. By sharing experiences, exchanging ideas, and supporting one another, members of the FRC have been able to tap into the group’s collective wisdom, amplifying their individual efforts and achievements.

From Zero to Dangerous: Mastering the Art of Flow

The term “zero to dangerous” (ZTD) encapsulates the ultimate goal of the Flow Research Collective: to empower individuals to transition from a state of inexperience or mediocrity to one of mastery and excellence. Drawing inspiration from the language of fighter pilots who aim to go from zero to dangerous in their skill level, the FRC seeks to help individuals reach a level of proficiency where they can navigate life’s challenges with confidence and grace.

Achieving this level of mastery requires more than just theoretical knowledge; it demands practice, discipline, and a willingness to push beyond one’s comfort zone. Through a combination of cutting-edge research, immersive training experiences, and personalized coaching, the FRC equips individuals with the tools and techniques they need to harness the power of flow and unleash their full potential.

Looking Ahead: A Future of Possibilities

As the Flow Research Collective grows and evolves, the possibilities are endless. From helping athletes and artists achieve peak performance to revolutionizing the way businesses operate, the principles of flow have the potential to transform every aspect of human endeavor.

With advances in technology, neuroscience, and our understanding of human psychology, the FRC is poised to unlock new frontiers in human performance enhancement. By staying true to its mission of understanding, mastering, and leveraging the power of flow, the Flow Research Collective is paving the way for a future where individuals and organizations can thrive like never before.

What is FLOW?

Specifically, “Flow” occurs when individuals are fully immersed in a task, experiencing deep focus, high levels of enjoyment, and a sense of timelessness. In this state, individuals often report feeling in control, highly motivated, and completely absorbed in the activity at hand. Flow typically occurs when the challenge of a task matches an individual’s skill level, leading to a harmonious balance that encourages peak performance and creativity. Achieving flow can enhance productivity, increased well-being, and a sense of fulfillment. The class mentioned herewith trains you to optimize and balance the release of neurochemicals.

In the state of flow, several neurotransmitters and neurochemicals are released, contributing to the heightened sense of focus, motivation, and well-being experienced by individuals. Some of the key neurochemicals involved include:

  1. Dopamine: Often referred to as the “feel-good” neurotransmitter, dopamine is associated with motivation, reward, and pleasure. During flow, dopamine levels increase, reinforcing the behavior and enhancing the feeling of satisfaction associated with being in the zone.
  2. Endorphins: Endorphins are natural painkillers produced by the body and contribute to feelings of euphoria and well-being. In flow, endorphin levels rise, potentially reducing the perception of discomfort or fatigue and promoting a sense of exhilaration.
  3. Serotonin: Serotonin affects mood regulation, emotional balance, and overall well-being. Increased serotonin levels during flow can contribute to a sense of calmness, contentment, and happiness.
  4. Anandamide: Anandamide is a neurotransmitter associated with bliss, joy, and relaxation. Elevated levels of anandamide during flow may enhance individuals’ overall sense of well-being and pleasure.
  5. Norepinephrine: Norepinephrine plays a role in attention, focus, and arousal. In flow, norepinephrine levels increase, heightening alertness, enhancing concentration, and promoting a state of intense focus on the task at hand.

So this class was much more than just a recipe for flow. It was mapping what is called your Maximally Transformative Process.

The Maximally Transformative process (MTP) refers to a structured approach or methodology designed to help individuals achieve peak performance states such as flow more consistently and experience significant personal and professional growth.

This process typically involves a combination of research-based strategies, tools, and techniques derived from fields such as neuroscience, psychology, and peak performance coaching. It aims to help individuals identify and leverage their strengths, optimize their environment for flow, and cultivate the necessary mindset and skills to enter flow states more reliably.

The maximally transformative process often includes elements such as:

  1. Flow Triggers: Identifying specific triggers or conditions that reliably induce flow states for an individual, such as clear goals, immediate feedback, and a balance between challenge and skill.
  2. Flow Cycles: Understanding the stages of the flow cycle (struggle, release, flow, and recovery) and learning to navigate through them effectively to maximize performance and growth.
  3. Psychological Skills Training: Developing mental skills such as focus, resilience, and mindfulness to enhance the ability to enter and sustain flow states under varying conditions.
  4. Environmental Optimization: Structuring one’s physical and social environment to minimize distractions, maximize motivation, and promote optimal conditions for flow.
  5. Feedback and Reflection: Cultivating a practice of self-awareness, reflection, and continuous learning to refine performance and maintain momentum over time.

The actual class was related to achieving this process. As I mentioned earlier, there was a registration process. Upon registration, one is contacted by a representative from RFC. The person who contacted me for a qualifying interview was Maleke Fuentes. He was amazing during the qualification process. He discussed his background and how he became involved with FRC. He was very forthcoming, and I directly asked if FRC accepted all applicants. He flatly stated – NO.

Once you are accepted, you are dropped into both virtual and live classes. Relative to this, the class operationally consists of a pod that meets twice weekly, and then you have 1:1 time with the respective coach.

My coach was the amazing Marcus Lefton. He was very forthcoming and extremely insightful. He openly shared his amazing background and was very candid in pod and 1:1 classes. Given his background, he led by example and proverbially “at his own dog food,” as they say in the software space. He could go vertically deep and horizontally in recommending operationally, physically, and psychologically, as the FRC is extremely life-changing.

The class is broken into deeper steps into the rabbit hole. As one would expect, this can become extremely self-referential, which is the goal of the class.

For instance, there is a class where we are given 90 seconds to write down at least 15 things YOU do well. I, in full transparency, fully failed. I got to about two, maybe three. In one of Stephen Kotler’s books, he stated to write down 25 things you do well. It is difficult. Further, the suggestions and they are brutal in many cases are counter-intuitive, and they work.

Near the end of the class, we had a 1:1, during which we really drilled down into “my” Maximally Transformative Process. He was extremely candid and stated, “Ted, you are usually the shaman and or the genie that grants everyone else’s wishes. Now the genie is standing before you, asking you what you truly want?” i was very taken back as i don’t think in these terms. i just amplify folks at best.

i have not been the same since. Thank you Marcus.

In short, go look into the class. While it is not cheap, how much is your mental and physical health really worth?

As a wise man once said, “People who don’t need self-help books read them, and people who need them don’t read them.” This is usually the case here as all the folks in the pod i was included in were very performant.

The journey of the Flow Research Collective from Zero To Dangerous is a testament to the transformative power of flow. By unlocking the secrets of peak performance and sharing them with the world, the FRC is helping individuals tap into their innate potential and achieve extraordinary feats. One thing is clear as we look to the future: the flow revolution is just beginning, and the possibilities are limitless.

Personally, I can’t say enough about the class and people. Here is the link to the class -> Flow Research Class.

Go invest in yourself.

Until Then,

#iwishyouwater <- Cloudbreak from the surfing, waves and soundtrack.

Muzak To Blarg by : “Bach Synthesis: 15 Inventions”. Amazing.