Between flow and pop-intimacy. High-speed society and escape into yourself

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The text presents the flow concept, one of the main terms created as a part of so-called positive psychology, a science that explores psychological foundation of well-being, the roots of positive emotions and potential of human mind. The flow is an individual experience, characterized both by – simultaneously – a sense of satisfaction and growth. The author proves the thesis that the flow, which is at the same time a deeply intimate experience, constitutes a very good counterbalance for the ethos of contemporary life, a life in a hurry, a life that favours material and individual values. Moreover, he points out that functioning in the flow may be to some extent in the opposition to the ideals of consumerism, which may make the state of the flow much harder to achieve, as well as so-called mind entropy, that seems to influence more and more individuals. It does not mean though that pop culture does not make efforts to offer something “in return”. That offer, called by the author as “pop-intimacy”, includes services that refer to increasingly popular philosophy of slow movement. However, the ideals of “being slow” in a high-speed society may turn out to be impossible to achieve, which leaves the need of intimacy permanently unsatisfied.

Keywords: flow, positive psychology, well-being, high-speed society, pop-intimacy

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