Nagle reminded me that there were some things I haven't shared yet (also, note the new "kinesthetic" category for this blog; my past two somatic awareness posts are also on there now.)
Keyboard awareness has been key for me (pun intended). This is with both senses of the word "keyboard" - computer and piano. Add that to the "and my elbow is double-jointed" thing, and you get "hello, risk factors for messing up your arms early in life!" I'm stunned I lasted this long, really. Anyway.
There's a great contrast between the piano, where I'm acutely aware of what I'm doing because it's my "job" to listen for this fine-tuned feedback that depends on what my muscles do (it's not perfect, but it's easy to adjust when I'm reading books because I can immediately go "yeah, that sounds good!") and the computer, where my job is almost to be not aware of how I'm sitting... I feel like I need to be able to be unaware of the physicality of my input methods in order to get the mental work onto my screen. So I'm continuously trying to transfer knowledge back and forth between both.
I'm also becoming more aware of what my level of mental and physical awareness is when I am...
- at the computer
- at the piano, sightreading
- at the piano, playing something I know, having a good time, playing musically and listening...
1 and 2 are both very cerebral, and somatic awareness is almost nil. 3 has a ton of awareness in both directions. Based on this, one breakthrough was from trying to find the 4th counterpart - computer with awareness. I tried to type while listening to my computer keyboard, playing it melodically with a rhythm and body motion as if it were a piano piece - and different kinds of piano pieces (Prokofiev != Bach in terms of everything, including physical movement, etc). Instead of musical phrases, I leaned into and paced my typing to sentence phrases. This didn't disrupt my mental flow as much and gave me some access to my physical one, but there's a ways to go before using my computer can be more than a just-my-brain activity.
Yes, it did strike me that a "you're typing too hard" indicator might be a useful bit of technology to exist. Since the computer doesn't know how hard you're striking keyboard keys, it'd have to be on the keyboard itself, or on a listener near the keyboard that can
It still feels awkward, though - it's hard to determine when my physical awkwardness comes from inexperience doing the right thing, or simply doing the wrong thing. I wonder if I'll get a gauge for that in time.