Advertisement

The Dark Side of the Moon

  • Julia SchülerEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

When talking about flow, most people probably think of a highly desirable state associated with a broad variety of positive outcomes in terms of positive motivation, well-being, and performance. In contrast, this chapter suggests that the characteristics of flow also have the potential to be evil. First, we will explain how flow can lead to addiction when exercising, playing games, and using the Internet. Then we will consider how flow is linked to impaired risk perception and risky behavior. As a third negative facet of flow, we will outline how it can also be experienced in antisocial contexts and during combat. This chapter ends with some broader comments on the dark and bright sides of flow, including flow as a universal experience, the implications for practical interventions, ethical questions related to flow, and future research questions.

Keywords

Risk Perception Operant Conditioning Flow Experience Internet Addiction Dark Side 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Beard, K. W., & Wolf, E. M. (2001). Modification in the proposed diagnostic criteria for Internet addiction. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 4, 377–383.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Caplan, S. E. (2002). Problematic internet use and psychosocial well-being: Development of a theory-based cognitive-behavioral measurement instrument. Computers in Human Behavior, 18, 553–575.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Caputo, P. (1977). A rumor of war. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  4. Chen, H. (2006). Flow on the net – Detecting Web users’ positive affect and their flow states. Computers in Human Behavior, 22, 221–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Chou, T.-J., & Ting, C.-C. (2003). The role of flow experience in cyber-game addiction. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 6, 663–675.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Costa, P. T., Jr., & McCrae, R. R. (1992). Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI-R) and NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) manual. Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources.Google Scholar
  7. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1975). Beyond boredom and anxiety: Experiencing flow in work and play. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  8. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1990). Flow: The psychology of optimal experience. New York: Harper & Row.Google Scholar
  9. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1993). The evolving self. A psychology for the 3rd millennium. New York: Harper Collins.Google Scholar
  10. Csikszentmihalyi, I., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1988a). Introduction to part III. In M. Csikszentmihalyi & I. Csikszentmihalyi (Eds.), Optimal experience: Psychological studies of flow in consciousness (pp. 183–192). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Csikszentmihalyi, I. (1988b). Optimal experience: Psychological studies of flow in consciousness. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Csikszentmihalyi, M., & LeFevre, J. (1989). Optimal experience in work and leisure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 56, 815–822.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Rathunde, K. (1993). The measurement of flow in everyday life: Toward a theory of emergent motivation. In J. Jacobs (Ed.), Nebraska Symposium on Motivation, 1992: Developmental perspectives on motivation, current theory and research in motivation, 1992 (Vol. 40, pp. 57–97). Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press.Google Scholar
  14. Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1985a). Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behaviour. New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
  15. Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1985b). The general causality scale: Self-determination in personality. Journal of Research in Personality, 19, 109–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2000). The “what” and “why” of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self-determination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11, 227–268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dietrich, A. (2004). Neurocognitive mechanisms underlying the experience of flow. Consciousness and Cognition, 13, 746–761.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Eisenberger, R., Jones, J. R., Stinglhamber, F., Shanock, L., & Randall, A. T. (2005). Flow experiences at work: For high need achievers alone? Journal of Organizational Behavior, 26, 755–775.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Engeser, S., Rheinberg, F., Vollmeyer, R., & Bischoff, J. (2005). Motivation, Flow-Erleben und Lernleistung in universitären Lernsettings [Motivation, flow experience and performance in learning settings at university]. Zeitschrift für Pädagogische Psychologie, 19, 159–172.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Grant, J. E., Potenza, M. N., Weinstein, A., & Gorelick, D. A. (2010). Introduction to behavioral addictions. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 36, 233–242.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Harari, Y. N. (2008). Combat flow: military, political, and ethical dimensions of subjective well-being in war. Review of General Psychology, 12, 253–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hausenblaus, H. A., & Downs, D. S. (2002). Exercise dependence: A systematic review. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 3, 89–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Jackson, S. A., Thomas, P. R., Marsh, H. W., & Smethurst, C. J. (2001). Relationship between flow, self-concept, psychological skills, and performance. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 13, 129–153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Jacobs, D. F. (1989). A general theory of addictions: Rational for and evidence supporting a new approach for understanding and treating addictive behaviours. In H. J. Shaffer, S. A. Stein, B. Gambino, & T. N. Cummings (Eds.), Compulsive gambling: Theory, research, and practice (pp. 35–64). Lexington, UK: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  25. Kim, H. K., & Davis, K. E. (2009). Toward a comprehensive theory of problematic Internet use: Evaluating the role of self-esteem, anxiety, flow, and the self-rated importance of Internet acitivities. Computers in Human Behavior, 25, 490–500.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kuhl, J., & Beckmann, J. (1994). Volition and personality: Action versus state orientation. Göttingen: Hogrefe.Google Scholar
  27. Nakamura, J., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2002). The concept of flow. In C. R. Snyder & S. J. Lopez (Eds.), Handbook of positive psychology (pp. 89–105). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  28. Partington, S., Partington, E., & Olivier, S. (2009). The dark side of flow: A qualitative study of dependence in big wave surfing. The Sport Psychologist, 23, 170–185.Google Scholar
  29. Perry, S. K. (1999). Writing in flow. Cincinnati: Writer’s Digest Books.Google Scholar
  30. Rheinberg, F. (1991). Flow-experience when motorcycling: A study of a special human condition. In R. Brendicke (Ed.), Safety, environment, future (pp. 349–362). Bochum: Institut für Zweiradsicherheit (ifZ).Google Scholar
  31. Sato, I. (1988). Bosozoku: Flow in Japanese motorcycle gangs. In M. Csikszentmihalyi & I. S. Csikszentmihalyi (Eds.), Optimal experience: Psychological studies of flow in consciousness (pp. 92–117). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Schüler, J. (2007). Arousal of flow experience in a learning setting and its effects on exam performance and affect. Zeitschrift für Pädagogische Psychologie, 21, 217–227.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Schüler, J. (2011). Self-efficacy mediates the relationship between the flow experience of climbers and their risky behavior. Manuscript in preparation.Google Scholar
  34. Schüler, J., & Pfenninger, M. (2011). Flow impairs risk perception in kayakers. In B. D. Geranto (Ed.), Sport psychology (pp. 237–246). New York: Nova.Google Scholar
  35. Seifert, T., & Heddersen, C. (2010). Intrinsic motivation and flow in skateboarding: An ethnographic study. Journal of Happiness Studies, 11, 277–292.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Thatcher, A., Wretschko, G., & Fridjhon, P. (2008). Online flow experiences, problematic Internet use and Internet procrastination. Computers in Human Behavior, 24, 2236–2254.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Wanner, B., Ladouceur, R., Auclair, A. V., & Vitaro, F. (2006). Flow and dissociation: Examination of mean levels, cross-links, and links to emotional well-being across sports and recreational and pathological gambling. Journal of Gambling Studies, 22, 289–304.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Webster, J., Trevino, L. K., & Ryan, L. (1993). The dimensionality and correlates of flow in human-computer interactions. Computers in Human Behavior, 9, 411–429.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. World Health Organization. (1994). International statistical classification of diseases and related health problems. ICD-10. Geneva: WHO.Google Scholar
  40. Zuckerman, M. (2006). Sensation seeking and risky behavior. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Sport ScienceUniversity of BernBernSwitzerland

Personalised recommendations