In his book, Csíkszentmihályi explains that flow is likely to occur when an individual is faced with a task that has clear goals that require specific responses. A game of chess is a good example of when a flow state might occur. For the duration of a competition, the player has very specific goals and responses, allowing attention to be focused entirely on the game during the period of play.
It’s more difficult to experience flow if there are things in your environment competing for your attention. Try reducing distracting things in your environment so you can fully focus on the task at hand.
“Flow also happens when a person’s skills are fully involved in overcoming a challenge that is just about manageable, so it acts as a magnet for learning new skills and increasing challenges,”8 Csíkszentmihályi explains. “If challenges are too low, one gets back to flow by increasing them. If challenges are too great, one can return to the flow state by learning new skills.”
You aren’t likely to achieve flow if you are doing something you truly dislike. Focus on trying to achieve flow while working on something you love.