Friday

 Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

  (Leo F. Buscaglia)

Thursday

Fear

There is a modern phobia of physical contact. People quite often do not like to be touched. Yet, touch is one of our senses and if we ignore it, our world becomes far lonelier.

In taijiquan we consider touch to be very important; by working with somebody else we can help them to feel how their own body operates and help ourselves as well.

We encourage people to become accustomed to physical proximity from the start of their training, to relax, soften and be receptive to other people.

Wednesday

Touch

The sense of touch is actually quite complex. Within the sense category of touch we may include: pressure, pain, temperature, shape, softness, texture and vibration.

Taijiquan aims to improve our brain's capacity to interpret and respond to the data it receives.

Tuesday

Sitting

People tend to sit a lot these days. In the car, on the sofa, at a table. Whilst watching TV. When eating. Sitting for short periods of time is fine but lengthy sitting has an adverse effect on circulation.

Saturday

 The risk of heart failure was more than double for men who sat for at least five hours a day outside of work and didn't exercise very much, compared with men who were physically active and sat for less than two hours a day.

 
(Dr. Deborah Rohm) 

Wednesday

Many people are so uncomfortable in the absence of noise that they will leave the television on even when no one is watching. I have passed people on lonely mountain paths carrying radios that were blasting out rock music. They like the scenery but fear the silence. 

We are overwhelmed by noise pollution which keeps us from being able to relax and which wreaks havoc on our nervous system.

(John Lash)

 Touch is as important as vision and hearing for learning and retaining information. Lack of touch can lead to emotional disturbances, as well as lessened intellectual ability and physical growth, reduced sexual interest, and even immune system weaknesses.

 
(Harvard Medical School’s Harvard Health Publication, May 2009)

Sunday

Oasis

Week in, week out, people attend tai chi classes. The instructor is always friendly. The lessons are always stimulating. Your fellow students are always courteous, well mannered and nice.

Your personal life may be in turmoil, your work life may be tedious or disappointing, yet tai chi class remains a constant: comfortable, familiar, friendly and fun.

Instead of being met by rivalry, one-upmanship and stress, you encounter friendship and warmth.

Saturday

Freedom from stress

A tai chi class is a quiet place, yet somehow neither boring nor lacking in stimulation. There are no mobile phones, no TV screens, no computers, no concerns, worries or deadlines.

Instead, you can relax, let go and get some much needed 'me' time.
When the incessant noise and distraction ends, you will start to feel different. Tai chi will assist you in becoming quiet inside.

Friday

A calmer mind?

Most people have minds that are like adverts chattering noisily: worrying, flitting and unsettled. Qigong and tai chi slowly encourage you to become quieter inside.

By moving slowly and calmly, you are aware of what is happening as it happens.

Thursday

Talking less

It is good to talk, yet talking is also a problem. If your mind is never still and quiet, you cannot possibly feel relaxed and at peace.

For many people talking is a compulsive habit, serving to mask the anxiety within. Without the chatter, people feel alone and isolated.

Wednesday

Immersion

Tai chi creates a situation where your attention is absorbed with where you are and what you are doing, so the mind becomes quieter automatically.

Unlike concentration, you allow the mind to open and become expansive. You feel, hear and see everything around you. The chattering of your thoughts will begin to fade.

Tuesday

Find the calm

There are calm places to be found in every town. A tai chi class is a good example. Calm voices, settled emotions and an atmosphere of friendship and camaraderie will be immediately apparent.

This may feel most unfamiliar to you, odd even. Don't panic. Give yourself time to adjust to something different. Just stay with it and enjoy. A feeling of serenity and peace may settle upon you.

Monday

Invest in loss

To find calm places you need to become a little lost yourself. Not lost in drink, drugs, illusion or stimulation. Quite the opposite. You will need your wits about you.

You need to step off the familiar pathways of your life and walk somewhere different.