Uncertainty fills our days right now. We cannot see this COVID-19, except in the terrifying effects it wreaks on human well-being. We fear the effects of this unseen killer because we have mothers, fathers, children and friends who have taken seriously ill. Too many have died.
Some of us are staying inside most of the time. Others, the “essential” workers are out helping the public, in hospitals, grocery stores, fighting fires, etc., to help us get well, to help us stay safe. It is a strange time with no certainty about when we might not fear the wrath of this virus on a daily basis.
The most common question I have received as a Tai Chi teacher is “What is the most important thing I can do to center myself, to reduce my anxiety?” My answer is “breathe.” Take 3 seconds to breathe in; hold your breath for 3 seconds; breathe out for 3 seconds. Anxiety and stress cause us to shorten our breath, tense our neck muscles, feel lethargic. Breathing helps. Stretching helps. Walking helps. Eating nutritious foods helps.
For individuals fortunate enough to have time and internet availability, there are many options for exercising, listening to music, laughing with comedians and participating in energy generating classes like Tai Chi and Yoga.I feel blessed to have Tai Chi to reduce stress, get the kinks out, increase balance. One of the best features of a class is experiencing the connection with other students, seeing their smiles an creating energy. Getting out of the house, leaving the office to go to a designated space for class is a memory right now. Shutdowns in March. In person classes disappeared. We need to stay apart, at least 6 feet from each other, wear a mask, wash our hands, then wash our hands again. The world changed quickly when COVID-19 started ti spread. Now more than ever, we need to find ways to cope, reduce anxiety, keep our bodies and mind as strong as possible.
The new world of Tai Chi for me is online. I currently lead three classes a week and although we see each other in tiny rectangles on a screen, we continue to see each other’s faces, connect as best we can. The energy of us moving together comes right through the screen. I feel it.
We all need to keep moving. A Tai Chi resource for you: www.youtube.com/faulktaichi