We often want to compare our tai chi practice to that of others. How do my forms look (compared to hers)? How is my flow developing (compared to his)? What is she talking about when she mentions feeling her energy? What does he mean by being rooted?
When I first started studying tai chi seriously, I worried about other people all the time. I considered my tai chi to be pretty average, at best. Everyone else was doing so well. I remember my first hour at a week-long workshop. Everyone looked so smooth and graceful. I worried.
What I really needed was someone to say, "Stop it!". Don't compare yourself to others. Pay attention to your goals, not someone else. The only sensible comparison is with yourself. Are you doing better than you were before? Have your movements smoothed out? Are you starting to understand what your instructor is talking about?
This taught me a lesson. I am what I am. My skills are what they are. I try to avoid comparing my practice with others. I watch others and work with them to improve my skills, not to see who is better. If I can, I try to help others. Work hard, have fun, and don't worry about others.
What do you think? Leave a comment.
© 2012 Eric Borreson