Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Losing yourself in the moment. Or not.


This article was first published on noraresearches.com in March 2017.
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If we study film, do we ruin all future cinema trips?

If we study dance, can we ever really let go on the dance floor?

Spoiler alert: I studied dance.

I don't think studying somethings ruins it (and conversely, I have no problem letting go on the dance floor), but it's a question which, in its various forms, deserves air time.

I made a note on my phone last November which reads a bit like this (I have edited it slightly to make better sense):

"As with any training or study, practising performance and opening oneself to being watched can make one more aware of being watched at all times. In everyday life do I become more self conscious in a way that might stop me from doing certain things? Does it force me to always be in response to gaze? Or can this awareness give me the capacity (skill?) to be aware and to be accepting of it and respond with choice and agency? Does it in fact give me more choice in each (social) situation?"

I am pretty sure I was thinking about sex when I wrote this (when am I not?) and specifically the notion of 'losing yourself in the moment', which is often lauded as the ultimate goal for sexual activity. I think I am not very good at 'losing myself in the moment', but I wonder if that's partly because I seem to have spent the last several years of my life working out how to be engaged in complex, varied, highly physical activity (dance) whilst still being super aware of exactly where I am, who is watching me, what has happened before and what is coming next.

Would I have more fun in bed if I wasn't so friggin' aware of everything all the time? Maybe. Or maybe not... I reckon awareness also helps when it comes to sex.

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