100 Day Discipline

There is a famous (in China) Wild Goose Qigong form called the First 64. It takes 5 to 6 minutes to go through this long form-not much time out of any given day. I wanted to practice it everyday to deepen my connection to it, memorize it my muscles and bones, and refine my performance of it. I also wanted the benefits that comes with practicing it- the flexibility, back strength, thigh strength, energization, etc., etc.

Commit to Qigong

I decided to commit to a daily practice for 100 days. This is called a 100-day discipline. It is astonishing how difficult it can be to just do something everyday. 6 minutes, all I needed. I practiced other Qigong during this time, and much Taiji; but I really wanted to get that 100 days in on that specific form. Below is my struggle to attain a crumb self-mastery.

Attempt 1: I began my 100 day discipline with The First 64 on January 21, 2009. I lasted five days before I forgot to do it on the sixth day.

Attempt 2: I started again. This time I made 31 days in a row, but then was sick one day. Maybe I should have been doing more Qigong to prevent the short illness.

Attempt 3: I assayed another attempt beginning on February 28. I got 31 days in a row again, then forgot to practice the form on the 32nd day. Damn!

Attempt 4: Alright, mistakes happen. I started over. I made 27 days this time before I sashayed away.

Attempt 5: For my next attempt, beginning on April 1 of 2009, I made it 39 days before the memory gremlin averted my focus on the goal. Thirty-nine, that’s good, but kind of lame too.

Attempt 6: June 12 to 13. 2 days. Kind of lost my oomph.

It’s not like I’m trying to climb Annapurna or something. It’s just a little form. A toy mountain.

My Haplessness Continued

Attempt 7: June 15. 1 day. Really lost my oomph. Maybe it is an Everest.

Attempt 8: June 17 to 19. 3 days. I’m starting to think I’m pathetic.

Attempt 9: June 22. to July 8. 17 Days. A little better.

Attempt 10: July 10 to 26. 17 days again.

Attempt 11: July 28-30.  3 days.

I’m not Robert the Bruce making 7 attempts to free Scotland.
At this point I said to hell with it. I practiced the form now and then in August and early September but I didn’t keep track of it or try for any records.

One More Try

I was looking at the calendar one day and realized that if I started anew, refreshed and with renewed intent, I could finish by Christmas (December 25.)

Attempt 12: Sept 14 to Dec 22. 100 days. Yeah!

I am a dedicated Qigong person and this was a tough battle, the battle of competing habits. I am sure that anyone reading this could do a better job that I did, and get their 100 days in with a lot fewer than 12 tries.

Renewing the Habit

Well, I could do better. On January 1, 2009 I decided to begin a new 100 day discipline. This time it would be two forms every day: “First 64” and one called “Spiral.” Today, I completed my 100 day discipline of this coupled practice. I had no false starts, being able to remember to practice and actually practicing both forms each day.

I found they were more in my consciousness in each day. It was easier to remember if I got the practice in yet. On a few days I didn’t really feel like doing the forms, but did anyway for the sake of my 100-day discipline, for my bid for perfect attendance upon this health-building practice. One day I had to practice gingerly, as my left toe had just suffered a smashing.

And Onward

I got each practice in and I’m already 33 days into my next 100 days. I started performing the Second 64 each day after getting some refinement coaching from Paul Li on March 9. I’ve been practicing each of these forms three forms daily since then.

1 Comment »

  1. Nicole Armstrong said,

    September 28, 2010 @ 12:37 pm

    I like this idea of a 100 day disciplne. I am an acupuncturist and I often tell my patients that it takes 100 days to make or break a habit when I discuss stop smoking or healthier eating. And yet, I have never tried it for myself in regards to my taichi or qigong practice. Thanks for the inspiration. I am going to give it a go.
    Yours in health,

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