Develop the autotelic self.

The autotelic self is one that can transform potential threats into enjoyable challenges, thereby maintaining inner harmony. Most people have goals shaped directly by biological needs and social conventions—their origin is outside the self. An autotelic person has goals that emerge from consciously evaluated experience and therefore from the self proper. The autotelic person transforms potentially entropic experience into the flow.


  1. Set goals.
    To experience flow, you have to set clear and realistic goals.

  2. Become immersed in the activity.
    Invest your attention on the task at hand.

  3. Pay attention to what is happening.
    Your full attention should be on the activity. The autotelic self does not notice internal emotions like worrying.

  4. Learn to enjoy immediate experiences.
    A person with an autotelic self can enjoy an activity even when the objective circumstances are brutish and nasty. They do this by controlling their mind, which requires determination and discipline.


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