In our life to do or achieve all the things we want all we have is our time and our energy - both are finite. Who hasn’t after all the work, family, and other obligations felt exhausted, spent, lacking in the vitality and energy to start or continue to do the things we know that we need to do - to move in the direction that we want to go in. Or who hasn’t acted as if we’re going to live forever and squandered a lot of our time and energy, procrastinating endlessly and often carrying on without direction. Our time on earth is something arguably out of our control but managing our time and our energy are things that we can influence.
Good health and cultivation of energy, goal setting, intention, skill and will; these are the building blocks for our accomplishments, or lack thereof. Good health can encompass social/emotional, spiritual, mental/cognitive and physical health - all are important. Without splitting hairs and classifying everything categorically, we can improve our physical health by cultivating our “Chi or vitality”, strengthening/optimising our physical structure/cardiovascular system, etc. This cultivation is important because some “Chi” we can take in externally but mostly the amount of “Chi” we are given at birth is finite.
As far as I know we can cultivate or help our “Chi” and “vitality” through the internal arts Taiji, Qigong, Acupuncture/Chinese Medicine, Yoga, meditation,etc. Some people believe that only Taiji and Qigong are the only internal arts that are devoted to cultivating (gathering, storing and circulating) “Chi” so these arts may well be very unique.
Along with the “Chi” cultivation, reducing the dissipation or wastage of your “Chi” is very important in preserving your vitality and health. Dissipation can be done mentally, emotionally, or physically - excessive worry is a mental/emotional example, or abusing your body with drugs is a physical example.
So all in all it’s good to remind yourself every once in awhile of what we wish to achieve, get back on track, and not only be more appreciative and conscious of how we handle our time and energy, but also develop practices where we can waste less, and/or better cultivate our precious “Chi” - the petrol in our tank so to speak.
Author - Lee Chang Tye