Last summer, I ran a 20-day experimental program where 513 Western women were given one simple, fun, and powerful Asian slimming tip to try each day. People who followed through the program lost a stunning amount of weight naturally. However, the most interesting part of it was one surprising fact we’ve found about motivation when it came to weight loss.
To show you that, I need to tell you about this Teassert Technique I included as a part of the program. The technique was aimed at muting sugar cravings instantly. If you’ve been trying to lose weight for a while, you’d know it’s one of the toughest challenges among thousands of millions of overweight and obese people in the US.
In this article, I will teach you a four-part system to get motivated to lose weight (while continually losing weight) without trying.
How the Teassert Technique helps you to get motivated to lose weight
How much motivation does it require a someone who has sugar addiction to refrain herself from sugar every hour, every day, and every year? The conventional wisdom is “a lot.
Now don’t be shocked. The foolproof Teassert Technique has led everyone to an amazing shortcut, and here’s how it worked:
Whenever you have that donut, put a warm green tea on the side. For every bite of the donut, have 3 sips of the tea.
The result? You’ll stop wanting donut instantly.
In fact, the “teassert” (tea + dessert) is a millennia-old East Asian tradition that’s not uncommon to see in almost every household in China, Korea, and Japan. The rationale is to use the bitter tastants in green tea to counteract your body’s sugar response as the modern science has found out.
Without surprises, this technique worked out magically among my participants, and I kept getting exciting emails from people saying things like “my 11-year sugar craving is gone overnight!”
Afterward, I sent an email to all my the Teassert users who have struggled over sugar craving for at least 5 years and asked them: “was Teassert easy?”
The answer was unanimous “yes!”
“Do you think you can do it effortlessly every day?”
Apparently, those who no longer binged sugar managed to dramatically slash their calorie intake. Furthermore, the inflammation and toxins in their body were drastically decreased, making it 10X easier for them to feel satiated at meals and increase energy burn.
And the most important thing? It all happened automatically because instead of fighting against the craving, it was muted even before it was felt.
Almost overnight, these people’s reality has changed.
And that’s how motivation – even though traditionally perceived as the king in weight loss – was made completely irrelevant.
Part 1. Do this, or get stuck.
To avoid being stuck when losing weight, you need to quit the “willpower game.” To explain this philosophy, let me give you an example:
In martial arts, the savviest victors conquer by – not exhausting his physical power by overly exerting force – but leveraging the enemy’s physical potential, torque, and his natural tendency to lead him into falling.
That way, the victor can reserve his physical power and energy while keeping himself calm, grounded, and laser-focused – leaving his rival self-weakening in dire panic, desperation, and exhaustion.
In fact, that’s essentially what we manage to manifest in Teassert. By using the bitter taste in the particular types of tea to turn off the body’s want of sweets, the physical and psychological barriers are automatically cleared.
No more being stressed, depressed, or guilty whenever you see that chocolate bar. And because it’s so easy, the person using Teassert no longer had that motivation crisis when facing dessert.
In the end, she quit the willpower game – the game where she was constantly dieting, counting calories, restricting carbs, using disciplines to judge herself, depriving herself, and never enjoyed a single family meal for years.
Quitting the willpower game
That’s what I want to teach you to do too. You can find many good ideas on how to turn the “willpower game” into something simple and pleasurable. Teassert would be a great start if you struggle with the sugar craving.
Besides that, there are many good ideas to use to overcome different struggles. The key is to use the natural physical tendency – instead of disciplines – to channel your behaviors.
- Using a bit of minced ginger in your meals so that you’ll naturally want to eat less because ginger helps you curb your appetite instantly.
- Drinking a cup of water after every meal to not only boost satiety but also hydrate your body to flush out the toxins – making your digestive tract healthier and clearing inflammation.
- Learning to make some light stir-fry and steamed dishes so that you can enjoy nutrition while eating fewer calories without counting.
These moves seem to be trivial, but they are a part of a typical healthy person’s life and thinking. And when connected together throughout time, you get the synergy that helps you melt away fat while feeling accomplished and relaxed.
To the contrary, if you keep depriving yourself and fighting hunger, you’ve already lost even before you start because hunger is a natural force that is unbeatable.
There will be nothing to save your motivation because no matter what you do, you cannot win.
So do not play that “willpower game” to begin with. Instead, use the natural tendency of foods, body, and emotions to create an experience that fuels results, confidence, and motivation.
Exactly like what Sun Tzu taught us 2000 years ago in his Arts of War, excellence resides in winning without entering a battle (不战而胜， 善之善者也). This long-standing battlefield wisdom works the same well when the biggest opponent you are trying to outwit is yourself.
Part 2. The hidden conviction that makes weight loss 100x harder and kills motivation
So I just walked you through the idea of how the toughest cravings can be instantly silenced by taking one simple action.
I also told you to avoid the willpower game whenever possible.
And if you are an observatory person, you might have sensed the connotation behind it: weight loss is not supposed to be a willpower game.
“But weight loss is hard!”
There seems to be strong enough social proof for that statement considering how many people have been saying that during all these years of dieting.
However, look around and ask yourself: how many times does this statement come from people who have successfully lost weight for real and kept it off for years while living like a normal person?”
I bet none.
Is it pure coincidence, or is there a causal relationship? Is not being successful in weight loss makes one think it’s hard? Or is thinking that it’s hard causing one to fail?
Reset your powerful inner voice
You may already know that your thinking shapes your reality, and thinking “it’s hard” can deter you and suck up your motivation from the outset.
However, did you ever realize that in terms of demotivation, the real culprit is the “because” that comes right after the statement – the hidden conviction that’s unspoken yet overpowering.
That’s especially true for one of my experiment participants Sara. For over a decade, Sara has told herself
“I can’t lose weight because of my genes.
” And you’d know she was just one of a whole group of “gene doubters” through a brief scan over the mainstream weight loss forums out there.
By telling herself that it’s a genetic issue, Sara has developed a conviction and self-view that – even though being radically untrue – has dominated her for more than 10 years.
She never had motivation because her “problem” was impossible to solve. She was depressed about this.
Even though all she wanted was to lose 20 lbs, she ended up running 2000 extra miles on questioning her own being for 10 years.
She not only made weight loss 100 times harder but also sabotaged her self-worth, self-pride, and believed in the “disability” that never existed – just because of that one-line conviction she created for herself.
Not everybody doubts their gene as Sara did, but you know you are similarly affected by your own conviction whenever thoughts like the following ones pop up:
“Maybe my body is supposed to be overweight because I’ve dieted so hard to lose weight but never got off anywhere.”
(My comment: 100% people who lost weight by depriving themselves gain their weight back. Dieting is the dead end. Your body isn’t. )
“I’ve been dieting for so long. It’ll be impossible for me to lose weight because my metabolism is screwed by dieting.”
(Where did you learn that?)
“I can’t lose weight because all my family is overweight.”
(What would you say to your kids if they have the same belief one day?)
“It’s hard because I can barely find time for that.”
(Does it really require that much time?)
“It’s hard because I don’t think I deserve to be beautiful.”
(Really? Who told you that, beautiful? )
You see the words behind every “because” and how much they sound to be true. But most of the times they aren’t the truth, and they only exist because we tend to justify a thought with something that we can’t let go of. When there’s conviction, motivation dies.
The key takeaway: do not fall for the convictions. But if you are guilty already, here’s your solution in the next section.
“But hang on a second, Leslie! You haven’t yet told me why weight loss isn’t hard even if every dieter says it is!”
Because conventional wisdom is always wrong. That’s why 100% dieters gain back what they lose through dieting. Are you, too, playing the “willpower game?”
Part 3. How to relaunch motivation in one simple step
So how did Sara break free from her long-standing belief that her genes were the unstoppable force that held her back, which enabled her to regain motivation and lose a size effortlessly in only 3 weeks?
Through a proof.
When she managed to lose her first 5 lbs in two weeks just through the Teassert Technique, the conviction that her gene made it impossible to lose weight fast smashed into pieces all of a sudden.
It only took her two weeks to overthrow the self-view that she has been living by for 10 years! The curse was gone and her motivation went sky high right at that instance.
This is what I want to share with you in this section:
To boost motivation, you need to level up your experience with quick wins! The key is to target the right wins because otherwise, you’ll feel even more frustrated weeks after weeks.
So what will you target as a quick win?
“Losing 5 lbs in 2 weeks as Sara did!” – You call it out enthusiastically.
Sure, I don’t disagree with you on that because it’s possible. However, there’s one thing you need to realize: REAL weight loss is a byproduct of a set of good eating and living patterns, just like a good-looking transcript is a byproduct of intelligence and hard work.
And by the way, Sara did not lose 5 lbs (and later, 23 lbs in total) because she made it her goal. Instead, she lost the weight through learning to intuitively distance herself away from added sugar – that’s a skill that will help you slash off the pounds continuously and it will last as long as you live!
That’s why she lost 5 lbs, effortlessly. Are you going to diet your way to lose 5 pounds feeling deprived, or are you going to do this in a more safe, pleasurable, and meaningful way?
Now, let me take myself as another example:
When I lost my first 14 lbs during a vacation back at home in China – with no crazy dieting but just living a normal person’s life, that was pretty satisfying and healthy. It gave me massive confidence because I knew this could be easily carried out in the long run.
I won’t need to worry about gaining the weight back because I didn’t deprive myself of weight loss to start with. That made it even more promising. Then, my pure focus/quick win became whether I was following the takeaways that I learned from that experience. As long as I was, I was happy.
To sum it up: the motivation that Sara and I have gained was not because we lost 5 lbs or 14 lbs. We were motivated because we knew we were able to lose weight fast for real in the way we were doing it. No doubts.
So what could be the right targeted quick wins for you?
Setting the right targeted quick wins
It needs to be something that makes you confident, thinking that “I’m capable of doing this.” It can’t be another dead end like those twenty-something diets you’ve already gone through.
Everyone’s situation is different, but here let me throw some ideas for you to chew on:
- How about learning control? If you’ve been dealing with sugar cravings for years, you must be ecstatic to find yourself easily putting down that brownie after the first bite without a second thought, right? Perhaps using Teassert as it’s a great technique that gives you the win and gratuity immediately.
- How about building comfort? Instead of aiming at running 5K/day and exhausting yourself, wouldn’t it be more joyful to learn to make one quick, delicious, and healthy recipe that you relish?
- How about targeting convenience? Instead of banning carbs knowing it’ll bring you back to square one too soon, wouldn’t it be more promising to start phasing out of soda intake by cutting 50% first?
Ultimately, what you are doing is creating an experience of a series of wins vs. defeats.
Take my words for granted: you will be guaranteed to see quick results on the scale when you start making these easy changes in a structured and consistent way.
Why? Because like all human beings, if you live healthily, you become healthy, and you lose weight. The difference is how to make the change process easy, smooth, and sustainable.
Part 4. How to revive motivation when “things aren’t working!”
I know how stressful it is in general to find things you’ve given a lot of hope in aren’t working. In weight loss, it’s even more discouraging because it always triggers a deep, resounding doubt:
“What’s wrong with me?”
Then you feel stuck and paralyzed, not knowing what to do next.
I’d like to have the following conversation with people who pull their hair when finding things don’t work.
- Me: Do you think there’s any chance you can be an exception of all human beings and defy the universal physics and biological rules, and not have a healthy body when you make your meals 50% vegetables in portion size, eat in balance, cut off the junk food, go minimal on added sugar, stop overeating, eat a lot less calories (without counting), clear your body’s inflammation, and improve your digestive system?
- Her: No.
- Me: Then what are you worried about?
- Her: I don’t know. I guess I’m stressed out because I’m not losing 5 lbs a week as I used to be on Diet X. So I thought it wasn’t working.
- Me: It means you are not rushing into another failure with firm and steady progress. And you don’t like that?
Usually, that line ends the problem.
Alternatively, the person may realize that she’s not doing things right to start with. She has been playing this “willpower game” which makes her mind and body rebel throughout the long-term deprivation.
She has been on the road to self-sabotaging, which is a dead end. And her current results – compared to all her sacrifices – aren’t dramatic enough to keep her feel they are worthy. Therefore she’s demotivated.
If that’s the case, this conversation will make her rethink her approach and refocus herself with a refreshed mind.
Have a clear plan in your mind
One of the most common scenarios where people lose motivation is when they feel stuck and don’t know what’s the next step to take. In this case, whichever direction the conversation goes, there’s always a plan and a solution – you either realize that you’ve been doing pretty good so that you’ll just keep going, or you see an immediate opportunity to fix things that don’t work for you.
Having a plan is the recipe for thriving motivation. So whenever you are frustrated that “things aren’t working,” have this self-check dialogue with yourself and see where it leads you.
Summing it up
In this article, I’ve walked you through a four-part system to have endless motivation (while continuously losing weight) without trying.
The individual parts of the system are deeply interconnected with each other. And they are the bones and give you the main direction for everything else that you might use to further boost your motivation.
Notice besides showing you the four basic principles for thriving motivation, I did not touch on many of the quick motivation hacks you can find everywhere on the internet nowadays – for instance, finding an accountability partner, making a gratitude list, meditating every morning, and things alike.
In fact, you need to be careful when using these tips. If you are making efforts towards the wrong direction – say, a self-sabotage diet, applying these tips are only going to accelerate failures and frustration and lead you to the bigger, deeper emotional turmoil.
That’s why we need to focus on the very basics, creating a system where we are never going to be deprived of motivation to start with. The first step, if you still remember, is to avoid over-exhausting ourselves when unnecessary.