A healthy daily routine can work wonders. When you create a solid foundation for your day, you feel grounded, inspired, and self-accepting. It’s like having an internal compass that keeps you on track as you navigate the world around you.
Qi Gong practitioners understand the power of cultivating a daily routine. Some choose to practice as soon as they wake up. Others, prefer to wait until late morning, the afternoon, or even the evening. And then there are those who practice consistently throughout the day, slipping in a few exercises when they have two or three minutes to spare.
In truth, there is no universally “correct” way to practice. Each person is unique and has their own needs when it comes to self-care. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t seek inspiration from others’ daily habits.
Lee Holden has been practicing Qi Gong for most of his life. He’s studied with numerous masters in different parts of the world and has taught for several decades. With all that experience, what do you think his daily routine is like?
In this article, we’re going to share Lee Holden’s daily routine. May his daily choices offer ideas or inspiration for your own life.
Starting The Morning Fresh And Focused
Lee’s daily routine starts while he’s still in bed.
Before getting up, Lee lays in bed and does some deep belly breathing and meditation. He puts his hands on his Lower Tan Tien (at his lower abdomen) and brings his energy to his center. This helps him start the day fully connected to himself.
After a few minutes, he gets out of bed. Often, he does a short Qi Gong practice that focuses on activating and tonifying his energy.
He starts his morning Qi Gong routines with an exercise called Knocking on the Door of Life, followed by another exercise called Qi Massage. Both of these focus on awakening the Qi within the body, which makes him feel fresh and alive. If you’ve ever taken his classes, there’s a good chance you’re familiar with these two exercises.
After he’s warmed up, he enjoys some slow, flowing exercises to cultivate and circulate Qi throughout his body. This helps him to ‘charge’ up with the energies that he wishes to experience throughout his day. Often, he picks some ‘Swimming Dragon’ or ‘Five Elements’ exercises. Because each day is unique, he chooses specific exercises based on his needs for the day.
Usually, Lee blends additional breathwork or meditation practices into his morning Qi Gong routine. Just like in many of his classes, he uses meditation to further center his energy and set clear intentions for his day.
After a bit of Qi Gong and meditation, Lee enjoys some pu erh tea. He also helps his family prepare breakfast and attends to any other morning tasks that the day requires.
Lee’s Afternoon And Evening Routines
For Lee, Qi Gong isn’t something he does in the morning and then forgets about. Rather, it’s a practice that he continually returns to throughout the day.
Those who know Lee well know that he loves mountain biking! He often spends some time riding throughout the hills and forests near his home in Santa Cruz, California. He loves immersing himself in nature and feeling the excitement of coasting down hills.
Like many activities, Lee often seeks to blend Qi Gong with mountain biking. When he’s deep in the forest, he finds a quiet place, stops riding, and does a few Qi Gong exercises. This helps him to take in all of the nourishing Qi that nature has to offer.
When the evening arrives, Lee turns to Tao Yin exercises. Tao Yin is an ancient form of Qi Gong that focuses on gentle stretching movements and clearing tension from the meridian pathways. He also enjoys some brief meditation practices.
When it’s time for bed, Lee does a few final exercises. As he lays bed, he does the ‘Healing Sounds’ in order to let go of any old energy and cultivate inner peace. This helps him prepare for a restful and rejuvenating night of deep sleep.
Staying Consistent By Staying Flexible With His Daily Routine
If you’re relatively new to the practice, you might be thinking, “that’s a lot of Qi Gong to do each day.” Indeed, Qi Gong is never far from Lee’s consciousness. However, that doesn’t mean that it prevents him from doing all of the other activities that are also important to him.
Lee is a busy parent, partner, teacher, and member of his community. In other words, he has many of the same work and family responsibilities that most of us have. So, how does he manage to do Qi Gong three, four, or even five times a day?
The answer lies in staying flexible and finding moments between moments.
For Lee, Qi Gong isn’t something that can only be enjoyed at a specific time and place. He certainly does plan Qi Gong into his life (after all, he teaches classes regularly) but he doesn’t wait until he’s in the classroom to practice. Rather, he weaves it into his day, choosing opportune moments to give himself a quick boost of Qi.
For example, when Lee’s cooking dinner, he’ll do a few brief Qi Gong exercises while he’s waiting for his meal to cook. If he’s talking on the phone, he’ll use his headset or speakerphone so he can do some nice flowing movements or stretches while enjoying his conversation.
Not only does this help him consistently cultivate nourishing energy within himself, but it also allows him to be more fully present throughout all of his daily activities.
For those who are just getting started with Qi Gong (or haven’t tried it yet), it might seem unrealistic to do Qi Gong while talking on the phone. However, it might feel more doable to give Qi Gong a try by checking out a free introductory experience.
If you’re interested in learning more about Qi Gong and experiencing less stress and more energy in your life, try Lee Holden’s Two-Week Qi Gong Trial.