Your Tai Chi or Qigong progress will be held back by something that affects our entire culture. If you understand this, it will take a great deal of pressure off of you and your instructor.
Most Western students are obsessed with learning the Tai Chi or Qigong movements "perfectly," and this causes them stress, stress that tightens their mind and body, which slows their ability to learn and enjoy Tai Chi. In fact, we often convince ourselves that our attempts to learn are so "imperfect" that it is pointless to continue with our study.
Tai Chi and Qigong will show you on a very basic level that you are never "wrong." You are growing and learning how to do things better and better each and every day of your life. Tai Chi and Qigong are simple enough to use the very first day of practice, but its richness is so subtle that you can refine your Tai Chi movements for the rest of your life. Therefore, you do not need to "perfect" the first movement before learning the second. You learn a layer of the movements, and learning that layer changes who you are and how you function.
Your new and improved self can then learn the movements at yet a deeper, more subtle level, and so on for years and years. Tai Chi leaves you in an endlessly blooming state of perfection.
"We are living in a time when change is coming at us at light speed. If we wait to get everything perfect before we do it, we miss some great opportunities by living in a state of judgemental constipation.
When we began organizing World Tai Chi & Qigong Day, we had never organized a world event. We made alot of mistakes. But our Tai Chi and Qigong practice helped us "breath through" them, and go with the flow.
When I first began learning Tai Chi, 30 years ago, and faced the challenges to my balance, coordination, and self esteem Tai Chi and Qigong can bring to the surface, . . . I felt the same self judgement and panic that organizing a global event for the first time brought on.
Had I not faced those in class years ago, and learned the art of being accepting and non-judgemental of my own flawed humanity, I don't think I'd have been able to do what I'm doing now . . . which is flowing with constant change, and allowing myself the tolerance to change with it, rather than rigidly judging myself and avoiding the inevibility of change.
Great possibility lies through the doors of challenge Tai Chi and Qigong offer. My advice to you is to stick with your Tai Chi or Qigong classes. When challenges come up, remember that this too shall pass."