When we strike a balance between the challenge of an activity and our skill at performing it, when the rhythm of the work itself feels in sync with our pulse, when we know that what we’re doing matters, we can get totally absorbed in our task. That is happiness.
…In a typical day that teeters between anxiety and boredom, flow experiences are those flashes of intense living — bright against the dull. These optimal experiences can happen when we’re engaged in work paid and unpaid, in sports, in music, in art.
Ariel Gore, Bluebird: Women and the New Psychology of Happiness