About Tai Chi

Stress Test

Tai Chi Australia in Mandarin

The Miller-Smith Lifestyle Assessment Inventory

Read each item carefully, and then give it a rating from 1 to 5, depending on how often that item applies to you now. There are no right or wrong answers. The more accurately you answer, the better you will identify ways you can manage your stress better.

Your Lifestyle Almost Always
Almost Never
1. I eat at least one hot, balanced meal a day.
2. I get seven to eight hours sleep at least four nights a week.
3. I give and receive affection regularly.
4. I have at least one relative within 50km on whom I can rely.
5. I exercise to the point of perspiration at least twice a week.
6. I smoke less than half a pack of cigarettes a day (non-smokers score 1).
7. I take fewer than five alcoholic drinks a week (non-drinkers score 1).
8. I am the appropriate weight for my height.
9. I have an income adequate to meet basic expenses.
10. I get strength from my religious beliefs, or I feel comfortable with my view of the universe and my place in it.
11. I regularly attend club or social activities.
12. I have a network of friends/acquaintances.
13. I have one or more friends to confide in about personal matters.
14. I am in good health (including eyesight, hearing, teeth).
15. I am able to speak openly about my feelings when angry or worried.
16. I have regular conversations with the people I live with about domestic problems, eg. Chores, money and daily living issues.
17. I do something for fun at least once a week.
18. I am able to organize my time effectively.
19. I drink fewer than three cups of coffee (or tea or cola drinks) a day.
20. I take quiet time for myself during the day.
Total ticks in each column
x 1 x 2 x 3 x 4 x 5
Total for each column


To get your score on this test, add up the figures you have given. First, you can obtain a general indication of how much your lifestyle is making you vulnerable to distress, according to this scale:

Score indicates

Less than 50: Low vulnerability

50 - 70: Vulnerable to distress

70 - 95: Seriously vulnerable

More than 95: Extremely vulnerable

To reverse the stress cycle, an activity such as TAI CHI can be a way to take control and place limits on the way the body deals with the pressures of your lifestyle. Having learnt a basic Tai Chi form, the practice of it produces a meditation state, this disciplined physical and mental activity results in physical fitness as well as a greater tolerance to stress.

The following list has been collected to detail the positive effects of Tai Chi:

  • Boosting of the immune systems of the body
  • Lowering of blood lactate levels in the body. These chemicals when present can contribute to anxiety attacks.
  • Lowering of blood pressure
  • Greater creative capacity and mental energy
  • Improved muscle efficiency, body tone and body posture
  • Maintained reflexes and neuronal efficiency (these decline with disuse)
  • Greater self esteem, and generosity as a personality trait
  • Greater production of anti stress hormones (ACTH)
  • Increased endorphin production (the make you feel good chemical)
  • Increased sense of calmness
  • Sense of belongingness (group membership)
  • Improved bodily functions
  • Improved mental alertness and concentration
  • Endocrine hormonal balance, limiting cardiac and hypertension consequences Regular practice of TAI CHI has an enduring benefit to both the physical and psychological tolerance of stress.