Tai chi learning has a natural progression. Certain things must be learned before other things can be learned. I came across a quote that captures this idea pretty well:
I believe that this type of natural progression ensures that the body is only training what it is capable of doing and not wasting time on things that are far beyond its ability. ~ Mat Beausoleil (Read entire article here.)
How can you evaluate where you are on this progression? It's simple: observe and listen to your body. Pay attention to how your body feels. Observe how your body is changing from day to day, week to week, and month to month. Don't judge your performance as good or bad. Don't overanalyze. Don't worry about what you think you should be doing. Don't be in a hurry.
There is no rush. Don't worry about how quickly you are learning. Pay attention to how well you are learning. Know what is happening in your body. It's not a good sign if you can do all the forms but it causes you pain in your joints.
Once you can understand better what is happening to you, you can start to learn something new. You just can't rush it.
© 2013 Eric Borreson