The Gentle Power of Under Doing

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”

Lao Tzu

Happy holidays!

In the spirit of this holiday season, I’d love to share another transformative lesson that I learned during my recent silent retreat – this time from my Qi Gong teacher, Teja Bell.

This wisdom, the Art of Under Doing, has been unfolding in my life and entrepreneurial journey, and I’m excited to share it with you!

Teja says learning happens in layers.

First layer: Understanding Qi Gong:

Qi Gong, akin to Tai Chi, is a practice combining gentle movements with controlled breathing and meditation.

Both Qi Gong and Tai Chi are about cultivating and balancing life energy, encouraging a flow that’s both natural and powerful.

The Harmony of Motion and Stillness in Qi Gong:

Teja’s teachings incorporate the Pareto principle, suggesting that most outcomes (about 80%) come from a relatively small portion of our efforts (about 20%).

This principle is a key aspect of under-doing, emphasizing efficiency and impact.

Under doing in Qi Gong applies the principle, “less is more, and more is less.”

It teaches us that effective, mindful action often yields the most significant results.

Second Layer: The Power Under Doing:

“Effortless action brings endless peace.”

During the silent retreat, Teja continuously encouraged us to practice within about 70% of our capacity.

As he saw practitioners stretching to their limit and bouncing with vigor, he gently reminded us to move slowly and smoothly with mindfulness and intention.

This approach encourages presence, connection, and the release of unnecessary tension.

The 70/30 Guideline in Life, Business, and Health:

Applying the 70/30 guideline from Qi Gong to business and personal life encourages focusing on impactful actions.

“By letting go, it all gets done.”

Micro-Movements for Major Impact:

Teja’s approach, advocating for small, intentional adjustments, aligns with Bruce Lee’s wisdom:

“It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.”

Under Doing in Entrepreneurship:

Embracing under doing in business means concentrating on essential tasks and using resources judiciously.

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

Leonardo da Vinci

A Shift in Goal Setting:

My shift from being an overachiever to focusing on a singular goal like learning to meditate in 2016 was pivotal.

This keystone habit led to profound changes.

“The part can never be well unless the whole is well.”


Under Doing During the Holidays:

During the holidays, under doing in eating and drinking aligns with “Eat to live, not live to eat.”

Savor each moment and eat in moderation.

Under Doing in Planning for 2024:

For 2024, setting a singular, impactful goal is a practice in under doing.

“One thing done well is worth a million things done just okay.”

As we celebrate this season, reflect on this thought:

“What one goal, pursued with focus, could significantly transform your life in the coming year?”

Wishing you a holiday season filled with peace, joy, and meaningful simplicity.

Kalika Yap,

CEO of Citrus Studios