5 Tips for Overcoming Resistance to Qigong Practice

qigong practice Jan 29, 2023

What is your experience of your personal Qigong practice?

Is it easy for you? Do you jump out of bed each day eager to practice without any trouble?

Or are you, like me, someone who has to work everyday at 'making yourself' achieve a consistent practice?

Despite learning and practicing Qigong since 2000, and benefiting from the amazing consequences of this health methodology, I can't say it's been an easy ride.

Whilst some exercises and techniques have been relatively easy (eg sitting meditation) other practices have been harder, despite their enjoyability and ease (which for me personally has been standing and moving Qigong practice).

So why is this?

Why is that something SO immeasurably beneficial and enjoyable, can create so much resistance to practice?

Well, as we know in Ren Xue, it comes down to PATTERNS! Those pesky unhealthy patterns of consciousness which drive our every thought, feeling and behaviour. 

And as we know (if you've studied Ling Yuan Patterns Transformation) these patterns are strong, stubborn and deep. They don't give up without a fight.

So, whilst we are simultaneously working on uplevelling and transforming our consciousness through the techniques of Tong Yuan (heart consciousness transformation) and Ling Yuan (patterns transformation), we still need to do our moving and standing Qigong practice. 

So here are a few tips I've gleaned over 22 years which are helping me break through the barriers of resistance:


Stop Comparing

One of the mind habits we can have is to compare ourselves with others. It is one of the fundamental unhealthy patterns of consciousness we talk about in Ren Xue. 

Often we can compare ourselves to other teachers, colleagues, friends... those who seem to be steaming ahead with their practice and making great progress... those who seem to find it SO easy to practice. 

When we compare ourselves with others in this way, it can bring us down and put us off our own practice. 

Instead, we need to remember that we are all unique, and we all have our own personal journey of progress when it comes to Qigong. 

Bring it back to you and stop comparing yourself with ANYONE else.

Your practice is YOUR practice, and only YOUR progress is important.

I first learned this important lesson many years ago when I discovered I was unconsciously comparing myself with my brilliant Chi Nei Tsang teacher, Gilles Marin. The stress it was bringing was enormous, and I found myself getting more and more frustrated with my seeming inadequacy as a CNT practitioner. In fact, I was on the verge of quitting.

Then one day, when I really acknowledged this habit of comparison, I decided to stop it, because never ever in this universe was I going to be as accomplished as him.

In one instant, a weight lifted off my shoulders, and I felt so much relief. From that day onward, I just decided to focus on what I could do as a practitioner without any comparisions to any other CNT therapists. It made a huge difference. 


Find the Enjoyment

There is no doubt that Yuan Gong Qigong is an enjoyable practice. Even if initially we might find it difficult, because we're struggling maybe to memorize different routines, or because we have 'sore' spots in our body which are making themselves known until the Qi blocks are released, the truth is, the practice is easy and enjoyable.

If we are finding ourselves resisting practice, if we can focus in our mind on the feelings of the enjoyment of the practice, especially feeling this en-joy-ment in our heart, this can help break through the mental resistance to practice. Spend a few moments feeling into how good you have felt during practice, and ponder on how you might like to feel more of these good feelings. See if this helps inspire you to start your next practice session.


Just Start!

Following on from the above, as we know, once we start a practice session, we usually find it's enjoyable. Often it is the START of the practice which is the most difficult.

I remember in my teens, I used to play lacrosse. I was actually a very good player, making the county teams in the UK, and played for the very first New Zealand lacrosse team ever!

However, back at school, I would resist getting on the field. It felt like an effort. But once I was ON the field, I was away. It was easy.

I have found this to be similar with my Qigong practice. 

If I can just get myself to START a practice session, and trick my mind by telling it 'it's ok, you only have to do 5 minutes', once I start a practice session, I will normally finish.

Why is this?

Because once we have done the opening preparation section (6 verses mind and body preparation etc), we have brought ourselves into enough of a good energetic 'state' that the body-mind now wants to continue the session.

So just get yourself in position, standing ready for practice, and take yourself through the mind-body preparation, and see how by doing so, you are most likely going to want to continue on to the main part of the technique.


Work on Patterns

As I mentioned above, the pattern of resistance to movement started back in my teens. This means it's a deeply engrained pattern, with reasons for being. 

Learning to notice our resistances, and deciding to consciously work on our unhealthy patterns of consciousness, can help us move through resistance to practice.

As we know, resistance is often a 'secondary gain' (benefit), and secondary gains are almost always connected with some form of safety. In other words, secondary gain is an unconscious tactic to keep us safe in the world. We therefore need to recognize any secondary gains, and work to heal and transform the reasons for them existing. (If you're interested, I have a video on secondary gain in my free 'Secrets to Health' program). 


Recognize Accomplishments

Finally, the 5th tip (and there are more, but these 5 are a good start), really take the time to congratulate yourself every time you do a practice, especially if it has been difficult for you to get on that mat and do it! REALLY give yourself a BIG pat on the back.

This is the adult self speaking to the child self, who often did not get enough praise or recognition as a youngster.

Recognizing our achievements is a very important part of personal growth, and is part of fulfilling fundamental 'human needs'. We ALL need recognition in order to feel good about ourselves and grow healthy self-esteem, self-love etc. So make sure you congratulate yourself every time you complete a practice. This will help you want to do more.


Good luck with your practice!! 


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