I did a partial seated TCC practice in the doctor's office today while I waited for a doctor to arrive. Medical examination rooms are an excellent place to practice; you're alone, it's quiet, and--if you're nervous as I tend to be in medical offices--practice brings you into a place of quiet calm.
I remember a time maybe 10 years ago when I accompanied my mother to one of her doctors' appointments. Since Mom was one of my very first TCC students and it was clear that she was anxious about meeting a new doctor, I suggested we both do some TCC together while we waited. Frankly, it was hard for her to relax but it calmed her slightly and I certainly felt better.
I've used t'ai chi chih practice (sometimes it's a mental rehearsal) as a tool under many different circumstances: before workshops and presentations, prior to a job interview, before returning a difficult phone call, during an afternoon break from work beside a busy downtown street, or while waiting for a friend. You can do t'ai chi chih practice virtually anywhere.
The biggest barrier to a more public practice is usually the ego (I really should have written that word in capital letters). So, deliberately set your ego aside and, instead of focusing on what people around you do or say, concentrate on your practice ... nothing more.
Sounds easy doesn't it? Well, it may not be ... but that doesn't mean that you shouldn't try.
Part of t'ai chi chih practice--and often a bigger part than we like to admit--is dealing with Monkey Mind as it tempts, twists, and torments us with its continuous voices of self-judgment, self-doubt, and low self-esteem. These moments of practice in a wide variety of locations and situations reinforces the reality that practice does help you feel better. What do you need to do? Simply begin.