Tuesday, August 02, 2016

The Sync

We were playing tennis on Sunday morning before we left for goalie camp.

"I'm going to try to explain something to you, but it's a difficult concept," I said while we were hitting.

"Okay," Eli 15.0 said, skeptically.

I had just missed an easy volley.

"The ball has a physical existence," I said. "In your head, the ball also has an existence. When the ball in your head is perfectly synced with the ball in reality, you'll almost never hit a bad shot. What just happened now is that the ball was coming toward me so slowly that the tracks of the two balls became de-synced--the ball in my mind got ahead of the physical ball."

"Dad, just hold on, I'm calling for help," Eli said. "Hello? Can you come right away? I think my dad is having a nervous breakdown."

"It's not easy to explain," I said, laughing. "But it's true."

"Hello?" Eli said, picking up his imaginary phone again. "Please hurry!"

You can feel this while you play almost any sport. It's exceptionally difficult to focus just on what is, instead of something else.

Eli does that almost every moment in hockey, and he doesn't even realize he's doing it. It's a kind of absorption.

It's not just sports, either. I've also found it very true in terms of the creative process. There's a kind of flow that can be achieved if your absorption reaches a certain point.

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