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Today on The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about how to foster a state of flow in startup teams.

Sometimes, we are completely immersed in an activity that we don’t realize how much time flies by. This experience is a mental state that psychologists refer to as flow. 

In today’s episode of the show, Steli and Hiten talk about what it means to be in a state of flow, examples of being in a state of flow, what flow state is all about and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic

00:35 Why this topic was chosen.

01:39 What it means to be in a state of flow.

02:00 Examples of being in a state of flow.

02:30 What flow means to Hiten.

02:50 How you can have influence over people’s states.

03:49 The kinds of people Hiten likes to work with.

04:43 What flow state is all about.

07:17 The stress can affect founders’ flow.

3 Key Points:

Flow is when everything you do feels so easy. You can be watching TV and be in a state of flow.You can have influence over people’s states.


Steli Efti: Hey everybody, this is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah.


Steli Efti: And today on the Startup Chat, we're going to talk about flow states. What are they? Why are they valuable to you? But also more importantly, the thing I wanted to talk about is how to set up your team and your company in a way where those people get as much into a state of flow as possible. The reason why I wanted to talk to you about this, I went to the gym with a new found friend, a young entrepreneur from Switzerland who just moved to New York and we were talking about work and all the challenges and this, that and the other, and eventually he was telling me how everything in his life, he's trying to design around being in a state of flow for as long of a period of time as possible in each day. Then he was like, "Flow is such an important thing to me. It's such a fundamental thing to my happiness and my mental health. I feel flow needs to be a human right. Like everybody needs to have the rights to be as much in a state of flow as possible." I had to laugh about that statement, but then it stayed in the back of my mind. I was like, "Yeah there's real power in being on a state of flow." So I thought that it might be really useful for us to unpack that. So first let me ask you, Hiten, what is... For those that don't know, how would you even describe being in, quote unquote, flow, on a state of flow?


Hiten Shah: Things just feels so easy, whatever you're doing right now. They feel so easy, you feel like you can just keep doing it. Another example is, that people bring up about flow is, you don't realize how much time has passed. So in a way when you're watching TV, you are in flow, so you don't know how much time has past. So I think flow is just the state that you can get into. A lot of people talk about it because there's a whole book on it and stuff like that about how, it's like this a place where you're learning but it's not too hard and it's not too easy. I want to call bullshit on that, and say like, you can be watching TV and be in flow, which is something super easy for you to be able to do. Right? For most people. To me, flow is just like, I'm literally happy and satisfied with what I'm doing right now and I feel like I can do it for very long time at this pace. That's one reason why when you talk about like, "Oh, your team and flow and this kind of stuff," I don't control anyone's flow, Steli. I really don't. I don't control anyone's flow. I really don't.


Steli Efti: Well, you may or may not. You may or may not control it, but you can have influence over people's states.


Hiten Shah: I get it. I get it. I mean, as somebody who manages people, I'm like, okay, I get it.

Key points in this episode

Key Highlights

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