An introduction to a lecture

An introduction to a lecture

Listen to the introduction of a psychology lecture to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.

Preparation

Transcript

Good afternoon, everyone. Welcome to the first lecture of our new course in Positive Psychology. While some people may associate psychology with looking at what's wrong with us, and at what problems we have, there is much more to psychology than that. Positive psychology, for example, looks at how to help people become happier.

This lecture begins with a question: what makes a happy life?

Now, I'm going to give you one possible answer. A happy life is a life in which you are completely absorbed in what you do. Now, how does this compare with what you and your partner said? 

This answer comes from the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and the theory of flow. Csikszentmihalyi is a psychologist who has spent much of his professional life on the study of what makes people happy and how we can find happiness.

Csikszentmihalyi suggests the theory that happiness is not caused by external events or things that happen to us. Our perception of these things and how we see these events either makes us happy or sad. In other words, if we want happiness, we have to actively look for it. However, this does not mean that we should always look for happiness! Csikszentmihalyi believed that our happiest moments happen when we are in a state of flow.

The theory of flow can be summarised like this: when we are totally involved in, or focused on, what we are doing, we are in a state of flow.

Csikszentmihalyi got the inspiration for this theory when he noticed how artists worked in a studio. They completely lost track of time, they didn't notice they were hungry or tired, and they could work for hours, even days, without stopping. Anyone I have spoken to who has experienced this state of concentration has said it's difficult to explain. The best way to explain it is that it is like being in a river and the flow of the water carries you away.

For the rest of this lecture, I will explore this theory of flow in more detail. First we will look at Csikszentmihalyi's life, and how it influenced his ideas. Then we will look at the conditions that go with a state of flow. What creates flow, exactly? Finally, we will look at activities that can help us achieve flow in our everyday lives. Will this course make you happy for life? Well, maybe. Maybe. 

Right, let's get started. If you look at the next slide …

Discussion

Download
Worksheet83.65 KB

Language level

Average: 4.1 (128 votes)

Submitted by Suraj paliwal on Fri, 16/04/2021 - 06:20

Permalink
When I'm watching movies in the smartphone then I have totally loss of track and external effects have not seen.

Submitted by Frank Cuello on Fri, 02/04/2021 - 15:49

Permalink
When I'm playing video games I often lose the track of time. This thing cannot be said when I try to study or learn about something about math.

Submitted by In on Sun, 28/03/2021 - 06:32

Permalink
Yes, I did. This happens to me when I`m in the present moment. We use to live thinking in the future or in the past, but when we are in the present moment and we left to be absorbed by the flow of that, then is where the magic appears.

Submitted by Leila77 on Sun, 14/03/2021 - 10:25

Permalink
I found this audio so interesting and I wish I could listen to the rest of the lecture. Yes, I have been in a state of flow while reading an interesting book. Sometimes I can't stop reading until I finish it, even it's really late in the night.

Submitted by mo-tarik on Sat, 06/03/2021 - 14:01

Permalink
Been in a state of flow nowadays is not that easy, as it demands a huge concentration, and because of todays entertainment it becomes very hard for us to focus on our tasks. In my opinion even if it's hard to reach this state, we can try to practice it each day and develop the ability to control it.

Submitted by German on Thu, 18/02/2021 - 02:10

Permalink
I have been in state of flow when I am creating new tools to help the companies to resolve their problems.

Submitted by Abrarhussain on Mon, 08/02/2021 - 08:21

Permalink
Yes of course, I completely absorb my self and become in a state of flow during watching international cricket matches on television, I also take a long time when I read stories and poetry books.

Submitted by lavande1983 on Thu, 04/02/2021 - 21:44

Permalink
I also agree with this theory that a happy life is a life in which we are completely absorbed in what we do. Il means we interested so much in what we do. But i demmande if addiction is a type of hapiness? For example: game addiction, a person can spend most of his time on video game without eating and sleeping. He completely loses track of time, he does not notice about externant events around him, he plays video game for many hours , evens days. It’s very harmful for his health

Submitted by Aroooma on Tue, 26/01/2021 - 20:05

Permalink
Yes I 'm completely enter the state of flow when I read a good books or sing my favourite songs,It's wonderful state ,you feel like swimm in the space with out any noisy ideas