Right Hand Takes Control

Right Hand Takes Control

Hi,
I am playing trad music on the tenor banjo for about ten years. While playing at a session on two occasions in the past five years, it was as if my picking hand took control of my playing. I could play much faster and better.
This feeling only lasted ten seconds at a time,it was a great feeling not to think while playing when I am playing. Can anyone explain this feeling.

Thanks.
Mick

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

nope fraid not):

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

That happened me last night xD Adrenaline for the win!

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

Also from Wiki…

"The basic neuronal function of sending signals to other cells includes a capability for neurons to exchange signals with each other. Networks formed by interconnected groups of neurons are capable of a wide variety of functions, including feature detection, pattern generation, and timing"

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Re: Right Hand Takes Control

How many people here would have a moment of self-recognition if they read the definition of autotelic personality? - "personality traits include curiosity, persistence, low self-centeredness, and a high rate of performing activities for intrinsic reasons only" (in the wiki article linked above)

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

A good hit of thaistick will do that, at least it appears so at the time !

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

So will cocaine, manitas - "appears so at the time" being extremely relevant!

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

You must have been in "The Zone". That nebulous state of being that athletes keep trying to attain.

Re: Right Hand Takes Control

Hi Mick,

I’ve had such experiences a few times over the years. As far as I’m concerned, the "flow" is what it’s all about - one "catches on fire" and all impediments are brushed aside. After a while it becomes easier to enter that state.

To some extent, I agree with the wikipedia description of "flow", however, it seems a little too broad and includes a few states that are really not the same. There is a state of total imersion and concentration and there is a state of de-concentration, The concentrated state involves the ego, de-concentration is impeded by the ego. The key difference of these states is the time-sense: in the ego flow state, time appears to elapse quickly, in the ego-less state time appears to slow down.
Both these states can produce super-high performance. I suspect this is due to the myelinisation of the nerve connections responsible for patterned behaviour. When often-used nerve paths become myelinised, it is like they are "hard wired" the pattern set that is hard wired does not need to be evaluated step-by-step - the whole block happens on a single signal. We call this "muscle memory". The trick is to get interferences and distractors out of the way so that the skill set can run freely. In the concentrated state, one must have an "excuse" to put aside the primary distractors - such as "It’s my job" or "it’s expected" according to "what kinda guy you are". In the ego-less state, one is not any "kind of guy" and there are no distractors because no concentration is required - it’s all just there.

I hope you get many more of these moments! And I feel a bit sorry for those who have never had them.

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Re: Right Hand Takes Control

It,s the right hand that plays the music, whether it be picking, fiddling, clawhammer, or whatever, unless of course one is left handed. The other hand simply feeds it the notes. You can,t drive the music with your left hand, and it,s this drive (aka energy) that is what differentiates it, moves it above a mere collection of notes. At least that,s what they say !