Want the peace and serenity of being at the Shaolin Temple? It's not as hard as you think. Whether you're reading this on a packed train or in between your busy schedule, here's 7 hacks you can incorporate into your busy life to give you the peace and serenity of a Shaolin Monk!
1) Be Here Now - A Shaolin Monk uses his breath to stay connected. When you eat, cook, wash dishes, drink tea or coffee focus on your breath. Thoughts will come up. Think of them like guests in the house of the mind. We don’t need to talk to them or push them away, just don’t give them any energy. Keep coming back to your breath and eventually your thoughts will lessen.
2) Be Flexible - The beauty of Shaolin is that you can adapt your workout to last 5 minutes - 5 hours. My teaching schedule means that somedays I can’t train at the temple so I adapt my workout for my small living room in London ( see video below). Work around lack of time and space by adapting to your space and seeing what you can do with it. Never give yourself the excuse not to train.
3) Make Training Your Habit - It’s great to train in the mountains of China. There’s space, the hot weather means my muscles are warm. It’s harder to train in a small living room in London or go for a run in the rain. But this is my habit so I do it. Willpower runs out like petrol. You need willpower when you start but after a few months, your training needs to be as automatic as brushing your teeth or you won't stick to it.
4) Have Faith In Yourself - You have to be in the fight to win the fight. You also have to fall short of your target time and time again. At the temple I was slow to learn forms. But once I learnt them, I really mastered them. John Wooden said, Champions behave like champions before they’re champions; they have a winning standard of performance before they are winners. You’re not in the process of becoming a martial artist. You already are. With the correct attitude you can master anything.
5) Have No Energy Left In Reserve - Mind-Heart-Now means we are totally committed to what we do. If we train with 90% of ourselves but 10% is still at the office then we water the power of our training down. A Shaolin Monk trains as if this is their last session. There is no future time. Apply this philosophy to everything you do and watch how your performance sores. That 10% makes a big difference.
6) Shatter Your Comfort Zone - Mastery requires endless re-mastery. Whatever you find difficult or challenging then train in this. A Shaolin Monk’s training has to challenge his whole being. Doing the same workout week after week means your body adjusts and becomes lazy. Keep changing from Shaolin Workout to Bootcamp to Circuit Training.
7) Turn Everywhere Into The Shaolin Temple - When I first came to London, I couldn’t understand English. My brother, a monk from the Shaolin Temple, took me on the underground and we always took the stairs. I thought it strange that a modern city didn’t have lifts or escalators ! Don’t think that you only train when you do your workout. Walk, run, take the stairs and stretch throughout the day as much as you can.
Shaolin Isn't Removed From Your Daily Life. It's here To Help You Every Step Of The Way.