Be You: Find Your “Flow”

BE YOU Week 2: Find Your “Flow”

“If you have good thoughts, they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”
– Roald Dahl

This week for our BE YOU theme, we’re focusing on finding activities that get you into a state of “flow.”

Flow is a term coined by psychologist Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi (pronounced “cheeks sent me high”) that refers to a state of optimal experience and involvement in an activity during which we are performing at our best.

Watch Dr. Csikszentmihalyi talk about flow in his TED Talk, “Flow, the Secret to Happiness.”


When we’re in “flow,” we are doing something we really, really enjoy. We can’t wait to do the activity again, and we feel a lot of positive emotions while participating in the activity. We can stick with it for hours without even noticing the time going by. In fact, when we’re in flow, it’s hard to stop whatever we’re doing. Flow is different from pleasure – simply doing things that are enjoyable like watching TV, scrolling on social media, or shopping. Instead, flow activities usually are demanding and take our full attention and concentration.

People achieve flow in all different ways, including while playing a musical instrument, playing a sport, writing, painting, attending a concert, bird watching, riding a horse, or running, to name just a few. Often we cannot relate to the passion others have for their personal “flow” activity, since their enthusiasm and passion seem inordinately high. For the lucky ones among us, we find flow in our daily work.

The younger you are, the more likely it is that you’ve been in flow today. Young children excel at getting into a state of flow, usually during unstructured play time. As they create their pretend worlds, “cook” in the sand box, build a fort, or swing high on a swing, they are joyful and time flies by for them. Young children are experts at happily living in the moment. As we get older, however, we need to be more aware of getting ourselves into that engaged, amazing state that we enjoyed when we were younger.

Here’s an official definition of flow:
Flow is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by complete absorption in what one does.

And here are some ideas of possible flow activities from Deann Ware, Ph.d:
Physical activities such as sports, yoga, dance, and martial arts
Outdoor challenges such as hiking
Music–writing, playing, mixing
Art–painting, sculpture, mixed media, pottery
Do-It-Yourself projects, such as home improvement
Working with animals
Cooking and baking
Software development/coding
Needlework–sewing, knitting, cross stitch
Horseback riding
What you do for work (hopefully!)

This week’s #GACbeyou challenge

What activities get you into flow? When have you been doing something that you are so engaged that you’ve completely lost track of time? That’s a fun thing to explore as we continue to delve into our “BE YOU” theme. Flow states are a great clue as we figure out who we are and what makes us our best self!

What are new activities you want to try this summer?

What makes your heart “sing?”

Sometimes, we need to explore different activities before we figure out which activities get us into that awesome state of flow. Don’t worry if you haven’t found that awesome, engaged state yet. Sometimes, it takes awhile to explore, and many adults haven’t even figured it out yet! So start now, while you have some free time, exploring different activities – creative, athletic, academic, etc. – and find your flow!


Want to be inspired? Print out this week’s GACspiration and post it on your bathroom door or mirror (just like at GAC)!

Activity Ideas

Make a list of different possible flow activities that you want to explore. Consider different hobbies, sports, and music you have some interest in learning more about.

Try one new activity from the list you made.

More Flow activity ideas:

From Designing Your Life:
Energy Engagement Worksheet

Good Time Journal Activity Log


Be You!

Read more about flow in this post on Sunshine Parenting.

Helping Kids Find Flow

Ways to Teach Kids Flow

Learn more about FLOW.

Be You: You’re One of a Kind!

BE YOU Week 1: You’re One of a Kind!

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Have you ever thought about how amazing it is that there is no one else who is exactly like you? You are unique, original, and one of a kind!

This week for our BE YOU theme, we’re focusing on what you like best about yourself. It may sound strange to think and talk about what you like about yourself. It may sound like bragging or being overconfident. But it’s really important that instead of always telling ourselves and thinking about our faults and what we don’t like about ourselves that we take time to think about what we do like.

Watch the challenge online:

This week’s #GACbeyou challenge

Journal or share with someone else (can be a parent, sibling, or friend) your answer to this question:

Focus on your the inner qualities — personality traits and talents — that you like best about yourself.  

Here are some examples of personality or character traits that you might especially like about yourself:

Kindness – You think about others and do acts of kindness.

Enthusiasm – You get super excited about things – and get other people excited, too.

Grit – You stick with things even when it’s hard.

Sense of Humor – You make people laugh.

Gratitude – You thank others and think about things you’re grateful for.

Honesty – You tell the truth, even when it’s hard or you get in trouble for telling the truth.

Brave – You courageously speak what you believe, even when your opinion is unpopular.

Compassionate – You think about others, feel pain when others are hurt, and take action to help.

Leader – You influence others to act in a positive way.

Loyal – You stick by the side of your family and friends and stay loyal even when people are going through hard times.

These are just a few examples of character traits you might really like about yourself. There are many more!

Here are a few talents you might really like about yourself. How would you finish this phrase: “Something I like about myself is that I’m great at ……”

Music (playing an instrument, singing)

Sports (playing soccer, running, ping pong)

English, science, history, or another subject

Painting, photography, drawing, sewing, making friendship bracelets.



Doing magic tricks, riding a unicycle, playing chess, etc.

There are so many different talents and skills each person has. What is something you are good at that you really like about yourself?


Want to be inspired? Print out this week’s GACspiration and post it on your bathroom door or mirror (just like at GAC)!

Activity Ideas

• Get together (in person or online) with your family or a group of friends. Give everyone a chance to share one thing they like about themselves.

• Create a longer list of 10 (or more) things you like about yourself. You could make a list of as many things you like about yourself as how old you are. So, if you’re 14, write 14 things you like about yourself.

• Share with one of your parents, siblings, or a friend something you like about them and ask them to share something they like about you. You’ll both feel happier after the conversation!


Be You!

#GACkindness: 30 Days of Kindness

Will Kellogg on Growing Grit and the First Attempt In Learning

Celebrating Strengths

Sunshine Parenting Podcast Ep. 28: Focusing on Our Kids’ Strengths

Summer Middle School Programs With Soy

Episode 61

On this episode of the POG-Cast, Soy gave up the host’s seat to be interviewed by Sunshine (of the Sunshine Parenting podcast) about our offering for Middle School campers this summer, GALAMS.

GALAMS is a program designed around Gold Arrow Camp’s Core Values and how campers can use those values to build their own leadership skills. The program consists of 3 1-hour meetings each week where campers will be led by amazing GAC counselors as they work through the program. The group of campers will remain unchanged, giving campers and staff a chance to build relationships similar to those that they would have at camp.

Participants in the course also receive a T-shirt, certificate of completion, personalized letter of recommendation, and credit for a year of camp. The program runs from June 29- July 24th. More details are available on our dedicated page:

Summer Teen Program Details With Delta

Episode 60

On this very special episode of the GAC POG-Cast, Soy sat down with Sunshine who sat down with Delta to talk about our awesome new online leadership program for high school students, GALA.

The program, designed for 9-12th graders features 3 1-hour meetings a week, facilitated by awesome GAC counselors who have been working with our teen programs for years. Participants who complete the course also receive a T-shirt, certificate of completion, a personalized letter of recommendation, and credit for a year of camp.

GALA runs from June 29th-July 24th. You can find more details about the program on our dedicated page,



Episode 59

On this episode of the POG-Cast, Soy sits down with our Director of Parent and Camper Services, Chelster. Chelster has been with Gold Arrow Camp literally as long as she’s been alive. It was a real treat to talk with her about what she loves about camp and the impact camp has on kids. As usual, there’s a Joke of the Cast and a GACspiration.


Episode 58

On this episode, it’s a Morning Assembly reunion, as Evergreen joins Soy to talk about camp. Evergreen has a long history with camp and has experienced it as both a staff member and a parent. She has great insights about what makes camp special, which was really cool to hear. Soy shares some of his Dad’s work history in the Joke of the Cast and Victor Frankl supplies the GACspiration


Episode 57.

On this episode, Soy and Birks sat down to chat about camp. They covered many topics, but a key part of the discussion was about the job of being a camp counselor, and what you can learn in that job that is applicable outside of camp. Birks even shared why she thought that being a counselor was better training than being an intern. There’s a family story in the Joke of the Cast and Sunshine delivers a great GACspiration.

In the episode, Soy mentions that he’ll share some resources about why camp is better than an internship. Here are some of those resources.

The New York Times, The Camp Counselor vs. The Intern

Alison “Bean” Moeschberger, Camp Director, The Greatest Internship

Audrey “Sunshine” Monke, Sunshine Parenting Author, Why Being a Camp Counselor is the Best Summer Job

Leah Mesches, ACA, Can I Really Afford to Spend Another Summer at Camp?

Work at GAC (and yes, we can work with your university to make this summer a paid internship!)


Episode 56

Today was a special day for Soy because he got to have one of his best camp friends on the POG. Tank, who worked alongside Soy on the operations team at camp and who is a vital part of Morning Assembly, joined the POG-Cast from Vail, Colorado to talk about coming to camp, living in the mountains, and the most requested song at dances and Morning Assembly. There’s a superhero-themed Joke of the Cast and Ralph Waldo Emerson provided the GACspiration.



Episode 55

Lyric’s back! The POG-Cast’s all-time most featured guest, Rocks & Ropes Counselor Lyric, is back! This time he and Soy talked about what it’s like to have your family at camp. They also got to talk about how camp allows kids to be leaders. Soy lands a solid Joke of the Cast and there’s a New Year’s appropriate GACspiration.


Episode 54.

Today Soy is joined on the POG-Cast by longtime camper and staff member Dobby. They have a wonderful chat about what it’s like to do the same job at camp that her dad did under Manny Vezie and discuss memories at camp. There’s an aquatic Joke of the Cast and a GACspiration that asks you to take some action!