A New Year. We don’t hear so much about resolutions as in past years. Many people know that their desire to lose weight, exercise more and clean up the clutter may wane by February. Taking action requires a change in not only habits, but in ways of thinking about ourselves. It’s work, often hard work.
Although we might not make resolutions, we will likely have new expectations. It starts with the countdown on New Year’s Eve. . . 5. . . 4. . . 3. . . 2. . . 1. Out with the old; in with the new.
We can serve ourselves well by thinking about letting go of something. Once we let go, then we have room to be ready for something new. It might be a new friend, new job, increased confidence, more quality time with our family. It’s like a closet – we need to clean out space to make room for something new.
Tai Chi reflects this principle. We inhale and fill up with breath, then exhale and empty out. When we intentionally shift our weight, we fill up with weight on one leg, while simultaneously emptying out our weight on the other. In order to fill up, we need to first let go. I remember a wise Tai Chi master saying that Tai Chi is not about trying harder; it’s about allowing and letting go.
This lesson of Tai Chi applies to everybody, whether involved with Tai Chi or not. Letting go, relaxing is a goal, for good health and abundant living. Bob Klein, in his book “Movements of Magic: The Spirit of T’ai Chi Ch’uan” says it well,
“Letting go is a basic, if not the basic principle of T’ai Chi Ch’uan. It is said that a student’s progress is determined by how much he is willing to let go of — tension, emotional programming, fear, thinking, defensiveness, etc. The natural being is already powerful and wise. You must let go of your interference with the body’s power and wisdom.”