Movie stars talk about it, athletes talk about it, sport stars talk about it, pros talk about it and more recently the whole world is talking about it. What is it? No, not Trump! We are talking about it a phenomenon simply known as ‘the zone’. This article explains how to get in the aforementioned ‘zone’ and play optimally.
So what is this zone? Simply put, it’s when you become one with what you’re doing. It’s as if the outside world doesn’t exist. It’s when you have merged to become one being. Your zone can be described as one of those sessions where you feel that nothing can go wrong. Your concentration is at its best and the right decisions seem to come straight to you. When you can’t even explain that a certain choice was the right one, but on a subconscious level you just feel right. Put that in a series of right decisions, basically an unbreakable streak, that’s your zone!
Rightly said – It’s an elevated mental state of efficiency. Our brain concentrates only on necessary information and doesn’t allow itself to be distracted. The zone is a state that produces achievement with such an extraordinary, often unlikely, degree. Being ‘in the zone’ is pleasant, immersive, and…kinda trippy. Time collapses. Sound falls away. Suddenly we look up, and it’s 4 a.m.
This tunnel-vision phenomenon is reported by athletes, creatives, and psychologists alike as a hyper-focused, sometimes spiritual, state of mind where anything is possible. Being completely unaware of what’s going on around you as you are so extremely into what’s going on right in front of your face; like anything more than 3 feet away just doesn’t register in the brain.
Whilst in the zone, we have access to a much wider range of information. We can even fall back on stuff that is hidden deep in our subconscious that we didn’t even know we remembered. That’s why we sometimes feel very confident about making a certain move even though we may struggle to rationalize it to others.
An opposite effect takes place when we are outside the zone. We can’t properly access the information stored in our brain on a more conscious level.
Remember, the zone is a relatively larger concept and not just related to mind games. There is a specific activity where many almost always find their zone.
The interesting thing about being in the zone is the realization of the same. As soon as you realize you’re in the zone and performing your best that can sometimes be enough to push you out of the zone. As a result of which, you may only realize you were in the zone and performing at an extremely high level on the completion of the activity.
Many of the decisions we make even occur at a subconscious level below that of rational thought, yet they are consistently good decisions. Some may even experience the feeling of submerging or that of losing track of time. Our mind becomes absorbed with the activity and performs at a high level without any worry or doubt. We are calmly focused, and quietly confident that nothing can stop us from reaching our destination. This is the zone.
Being on the edge is completely opposite to being in the zone. Imagine a scenario where there is heavy rains and you’re driving on a slippery road. Would you still feel calm and relaxed like you usually do while driving on a normal day? You are actually aware of the consequences that may befall if you lose your attention for even a second, yet you still drive. You don’t let those thoughts permeate your subconscious. You feel on the edge. It’s probably a defence mechanism, but nevertheless, it’s our brain’s way of telling is that caution is mandatory.
But the irony here is that our brain being in this heightened state of anxiety causes us to perform at a higher level. Crazy, isn’t it? In the end, all we can say is reach your zone and try to stay there. Don’t let these tiny fluctuations sway you.
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