People ask, “how much time do you spend doing tai chi? Everyday?” I’m troubled to answer, because time is not an issue, only that I practice. Less and less I have to look for the time. It’s more of a command. I know if I don’t heed it, I will pay a price. I am no longer willing to pay for ignoring it. Once I could ignore the call, but not now. If you ever get to this point in your life, whatever your routine practice may be, I congratulate you. I honor you.
Well, they don’t mention tai chi and qigong in this one, but I’ll just go ahead and say it; “Do tai chi and qigong to give that old polipoprotein E (APOE) gene the hard time it deserve.”
“Mentally stimulating activities perhaps in combination with known healthy life styles such as exercise are simple and inexpensive activities that can potentially protect people against the development of mild cognitive impairment,” said senior study author Dr. Yonas E. Geda
They say that practicing at “same time, same place” everyday is best, but I say anywhere, anytime is superior. This is because fluidity is a key strength of your practice. It is an achievement that you reach through practice. Might as well start with it as a goal rather that adhere to an imposed rule of when and where. Of course, often enough it turns out to be a regular place and time. But it is not a hard and fast rule. Follow your intuition. Listen to your body. Step into your desire.
Your place will probably be where you feel comfortable and calm and your time might be when you can practice regularly. The early morning may be best, but anytime, as I said, is great. Whenever or wherever, desire to practice. Downplay feeling obligated that you have to practice. Once your body stores enough memory of the feeling of movement it will desire more. All you have to do is acknowledge and accept and act by practicing. It can be only a few minutes. It doesn’t have to be an hour or more. It can be a few moments spread over the day instead of all at once.
You do have to make the effort to remember to practice. Fit your practice into your daily routine somehow.
Many of us want to learn tai chi as a reaction to something in our lives that we want to change. Often that’s simply our daily routine filled with unrewarding habits. Acknowledging this to ourselves openly is a first step to changing it. Tai chi and qigong can replace undesirable things in our daily lives that we don’t want and add enduring, healthy optimism.
Do tai chi in the morning. It will place you in a frame of mind that you can carry through the day. Most of us won’t make it the whole day, or even the rest of the morning, as we slip back into an accustomed manner of moving. Our body, our thoughts, our feelings, our speech will return to the norm, yet a residue will remain. Build on that.
We live by the clock. You might say we’re slaves to it. A lot of our discordant feelings are due to our yearning to be free from the clock. That’s one reason why we do tai chi—to get away from THE CLOCK.
I see people looking at the clock in tai chi class. That means that they’re not concentrating enough on why they’re there in the first place. That’s OK though, because it’s not easy. But it’s easier than we think. Just showing up to practice is a masterful act of at least trying to break the chains of THE CLOCK. There’s a lot to be said for that.