From Talks at Google, Steven Kotler stopped by recently to discuss his new book, The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance (2014). Essentially, this is a book on applied flow states.
Here is the publisher's ad copy for the book:
In this groundbreaking book, New York Times–bestselling author Steven Kotler decodes the mystery of ultimate human performance. Drawing on over a decade of research and first-hand reporting with dozens of top action and adventure sports athletes like big wave legend Laird Hamilton, big mountain snowboarder Jeremy Jones, and skateboarding pioneer Danny Way, Kotler explores the frontier science of “flow,” an optimal state of consciousness in which we perform and feel our best.Interesting stuff.
Building a bridge between the extreme and the mainstream, The Rise of Superman explains how these athletes are using flow to do the impossible and how we can use this information to radically accelerate performance in our own lives.
At its core, this is a book about profound possibility; about what is actually possible for our species; about where—if anywhere—our limits lie.
Published on May 5, 2014
As the author of The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance and co-founder of the Flow Genome Project, Steven Kotler is one of the world's leading experts on ultimate human performance. In this riveting talk, he provides a stunning tour of current research, primarily focusing on "flow states"—an optimal state of consciousness where we both feel our best and perform our best. Researchers now know that flow sits at the heart of almost every athletic championship; underpins most major scientific breakthroughs; and accounts for significant progress in the arts. In business, its impact has been substantial. Coders in flow built the internet; video game designers in flow built the video game industry. "Flow state percentage"—which is the amount of time employees spend in flow—has been called the most important management metric for building great innovation teams. As a result of all of this, an increasing number of companies have put the cultivation of flow at the heart of their philosophies. So what is this mysterious state? How does it work its magic? And—if this really is the secret to ultimate human performance—how can we get more of it in our personal and professional lives?