Mindfulness Outside of the Classroom
Juliette tells us how her Wing Chun training has seeped into her everyday life...
'As an active person, I’m always trying to get touches every day whether it is from volleyball, dance or a workout at home. This year (2018), staying in Hong Kong, I wanted to pick up something new…
Growing up watching action films, I always loved the idea of a strong leading character who also knew how to kick butt on screen! It represented confidence and empowerment. Dreaming that it would be me playing one of those roles one day, I gave myself a goal to pursue it.
I was introduced to Wing Chun through a family friend and after hearing some amazing stories, I wanted to check it out.
Not only nowadays is it a popular style of fighting on screen, I also wanted to understand the physics behind the art –and I agreed with the idea of indulging myself more into a lifestyle of discipline, Mindfulness and practice, as I believe those are the keys to mastering any skill. So I made a decision to commit, which (to me) meant frequent practice and having the willingness to surrender any doubts I had of myself mastering an art. Much like when I was either in school focused on studies or working on my acting, I knew that the time and effort put into a craft will result in something great.
My first revelation about Wing Chun was how efficient it was. Every move is designed to attack and defend simultaneously. It was a match made in heaven because it meant that I maximized my time as well as every movement made.
But as a beginner, it is easy to tense up during the ‘cross punching’ exercise. The minute there was force, I had my Sifus frequently reminding me to relax and stay aware of my Tai Gong (a foundational concept unique to CST linage Wing Chun where you activate internal pelvic muscles to encourage relaxation in the area). When I would forget the foundation, a simple push can make me struggle to stand upright! Just like living in a fast pace city, we tend to forget to be mindful and if we constantly give our minds and thoughts to all the distractions, people, traffic and money, we let that influence our emotions, attitude and way of living.
Coming back to the stance and being mindful reminded me of my integrity. Especially in my industry, it is so easy to become sucked into the material benefits. While it may be glamourous, it is not absolutely necessary. If I am not mindful to my integrity, it will be easy to lose myself and what really matters to me.
I am always trying to apply practice from my classes to my daily life. For example, when attacking, I am aiming at the target and hitting through as if my end point is beyond the initial point of contact. In comparison to my attitude towards achieving something, I never actually stop once I’ve accomplished x or y. Why? Because it’s just another level I’ve reached to eventually master whatever it is I am trying to do.'
- Written by Juliette Louie, Grade 2 in the Mindful Wing Chun system as of March 2018
Juliette is an aspiring actress, winner of Miss Hong Kong 2017 and 2nd runner up in Miss Chinese International. She promote's women's empowerment believing that everyone has a voice and ideas worth hearing no matter what the gender, age, race or creed.