Want to create long-lasting, good habits? Do this ONE thing!

Look to impress yourself first!


Cassandra (Leong) Lister

2 years ago | 2 min read

Both these photos are of me. On the left, I weighed in at a whopping 72kgs
(=158.7lbs). On the right, 52kgs (114.6lbs). When I fell pregnant with my twins, I was relatively fit (regularly went for 10+kms runs without stopping). However, over the years after their birth, unhealthy eating habits seeped into my daily life. And the excuse of
“I don’t have enough time to exercise” became my default mantra.

Someone close to me (a family member) would point out from time to time that ‘I
was getting fat’. Heck, I even had a client who I’d known for many years (yes, he wasn’t one to mince words! 😅) who said the same. While these words hurt at the time, they weren’t enough to propel me into action.

You’re probably thinking, she’s going to write that the ONE thing she did to lose 20kgs was to incorporate regular exercise. While this is factually correct from an action perspective, this was NOT the ‘Ah hah’ moment for me.

In my head, I had mentally accepted that as long as the big figure on the scale started with a ‘6’ (i.e. 60–69kgs), then I was okay. I was not overweight. Nor unfit. And yet I was both. But you see, the mind is powerful and when we stick to the the same words/beliefs that go around and around in our heads, they are compelling enough for us to NOT CHANGE ANYTHING.

So what was my ‘Ah hah’ moment? Or more correctly, what was my ‘Oh crap!’ moment? It was the day I stepped on the scales and my weight registered 72kgs!! 😩 The big figure was now a ‘7’. Definitely not a trend that was good for me.

Over the next few weeks and months, I checked my nutrition macros daily. Calorie-counted every single meal. I increased my daily calorie burn by about 10–15%. Some days, I fasted and only drank water/black tea. Essentially, my NET daily calorie intake dropped by over 1000 calories.

Now, over 10 years later, I still maintain these healthy habits and my weight fluctuates around the 55kg zone. C’mon, life is too short to not
indulge in good food and wine!

So, what is the ONE thing, you ask? I changed my mindset. I made these
changes because I wanted to impress ME. Not someone else. I wanted to
challenge myself. Not others.

It’s very empowering!


Created by

Cassandra (Leong) Lister

Mother of twins. Commonwealth citizen. Former Global Banker. Aspiring book author. All stories and opinions published are my own.







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