Use Mind Power for Good

In telling the story of body transformer John Stone, we paused at the idea that, in a project of this magnitude, a person can be their own worst enemy. The mind is powerful enough to destroy us, and also powerful enough to give us a second chance to build our best selves. Since the mind can do so many amazing things, we might as well put it to good use. Mental games can go either way, and Stone suggests playing the healthy, productive kind:

I would picture myself outside mowing the lawn and washing the car with a 6-pack, and the look on my neighbors’ faces. I would keep this image in my head at all times. Nothing was going to keep me from reaching this goal. I know this all sounds fairly shallow…

Obviously, this is an intelligent person, but to reach his goal he gave himself permission to draw on any psychological advantage he could muster. He realized that the desire to show off an enviable abdomen was a banal and immature motive for change — and gave himself permission to use that fantasy as an incentive that was effective, and did no harm to anyone else. Stone writes,

Each time you’re faced with a workout or a food temptation you’ll either do the right thing or you’ll allow your mind to convince you that you have a good reason not to. Ultimately excuses don’t matter one bit — excuses never get you any closer to your goals, so always remember that.

In another post about motivation, Stone wrote:

Start with diet and exercise. Those two things completely changed my life. Eating right and exercising will help you begin to feel positive and healthy again. Slowly you’ll find yourself eliminating negativity from your life. These changes take time, but if you take it one step at a time you’ll change your whole life.

From the photos on his site, it appears that Stone was able to afford a pretty sweet home gym setup. But a lot of people manage to stay in good shape with just body-weight workouts, or yoga, or isometric exercises. The basic principles of dedication and momentum remain the same. For the truly determined person, even equipment is optional.

Stone talked constantly about momentum being the most powerful force in the drive to lose fat. For some people, baby steps are the way to go. For others, the ability to take that all-or-nothing plunge is paramount. He called momentum his real secret — “not some silly notion that I was blessed with some rare form of superhuman willpower.”

Dr. Pretlow has emphasized that willpower alone is not enough. But it is one tool in the toolbox, and if a person can cultivate and grow it, so much the better. However, children should not be expected to have that willpower skill operational yet. They need all the help they can get, and of course, around here, we recommend that parents look into W8Loss2Go.

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “My Transformation,”, 11/01/20
Source: “Fat loss 101: Dedication and momentum,”, 01/16/12
Source: “Mental tricks to help you stay motivated,”, 08/03/06
Image by Lars Plougmann/CC BY-SA 2.0

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OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

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