Aug 26

Thoughts on practice

Where do I find the time to practice?

This is something I’ve come across quite often in classes and workshops. It’s also a sentiment I have a lot of empathy with. As a stay at home dad of three who also runs, advertises and travels to Tai Chi/Qigong/Awareness classes, I’ve often felt the spaces in the day for practice diminish.

So what do I say?

Firstly, don’t put yourself under pressure to train too much. If you do then it’s a sure fire way to take the joy from your practice which could subsequently see you stopping altogether. If you set yourself unrealistic times scales which you may struggle to put into your daily routine then you will add stress to the movements, which are meant to be relaxed, and not fulfil your potential. Be realistic.

Secondly, do less more often. One of the wonderful things about these practices, is that you can tailor them to fit into your routines as an enhancement to daily living. So, if you can only manage 5 minutes silk reeling in the morning and 10 minutes Qigong in the evening, then so be it. At least then if you want to do more it’s an encouragement. I try to start my day with 20-30 min Qigong, fit in Tai Chi at some point in the afternoon and do the Five Animals form later in the evening. I am also luck enough to train while teaching.

Thirdly, try to practice daily. I treat training like taking free medicine. I know if I keep it daily then it will help keep my immune system and body fit for now and years to come. It will enhance my daily existence and accentuate whatever I do in life.

Forth, start each day anew. So you have the intention to do some form of practice everyday but unforeseen circumstances mean you miss a day or two, week, whatever. So what? That’s gone. The effort you’ve put in learning and training is still valid and you’ll be surprised how quickly you get back into it. Any training you do will benefit. If you fall off the bike get back on and give yourself a pat on the back for trying and trying again and again.