Check Out Our The 66-Day Calendar Challenge

Check Out Our The 66-Day Calendar Challenge

We at the Lead Domino and the good folks at theONEthing.com can help you answer the following questions:

Are you ready to make a change in your life, and that change requires you to build a new habit?

If you answered, “Yes”, where do you start?

In The ONE Thing, we explain that the hardest part about building habits is establishing them. They require discipline to begin, but luckily, once you’ve dedicated time to create a habit, it takes far less energy to maintain it.

How long does it take for your hard work to pay off? 

Researchers at the University College of London determined that it takes an average of 66 days to acquire a new habit. Depending on the type of habit you’re trying to build, the range of time needed to acquire a habit can take between 18 and 254 days, with easier behaviors taking fewer days on average and tougher habits taking longer. Still, 66 days represents what we call the “sweet spot” for habit formation.

And that’s where our 66-Day Calendar comes into play.


Once you’ve chosen a habit to focus on building, you can use the calendar to track your progress. The idea is to mark off every day you accomplish your goal with an X, and by doing so, holding yourself accountable to the results you desire to achieve.Make no mistake, the seemingly simple act of drawing on your calendar greatly contributes to your motivation.You’re knocking over your most important domino day after day. The string of successes you are building on the 66-day Calendar is your visual representation of the momentum you’re creating on the journey toward achieving your goal of establishing a new habit.

Consider for instance building the business-minded habit of making five prospecting calls every morning.  Write “Customer Prospecting” down on the 66-Day Calendar, circle the “Business” area of your life and indicate your start day. Then, start building your chain of Xs by completing your activity every single day and giving yourself credit for it. Once you’ve made all of your prospecting calls, draw an X that corresponds to the day you’ve completed your challenge. Don’t cheat and don’t break the chain.

Habit formation is not an easy task.  Habits take time and discipline to develop, so if you get frustrated, don’t give up too soon. You’ll find that the activity gets easier and easier to complete as time passes and your actions become a routine part of your daily life.

Because you will like what you see when you start to acquire a chain of Xs on your calendar, the 66-Day Calendar is a great personal accountability tool. Once you have the start of a chain under your belt, the natural inclination is to not want to break that chain.  This helps make the things you want to do in life become habitual.


Want even more accountability?

Post your 66-Day Calendar where others can see it and track your success, such as on your office door. And remember, you can apply the habit-building behaviors to more than just your professional activities. There are many areas of life that can benefit from the 66-Day Calendar. Consider challenging yourself to build habits that improve your physical health, your financial life, and relationships.


Download Your Free Copy of the 66 Day Calendar Here!


We at the Lead Domino love to credit our sources:  http://www.the1thing.com/blog/66-day-challenge/putting-the-66-day-calendar-to-work/
Good News For the New Year!  Improving Your Physical Health is as Easy as 1, 2, and 3!

Good News For the New Year! Improving Your Physical Health is as Easy as 1, 2, and 3!


It’s that time of year again, where you find yourself reflecting on last year’s goals, patting yourself on the back for your accomplishments and picking yourself up from your failures to blaze ahead in 2017. But, before you rewrite last year’s goals on this year’s calendar, you need to decide what habits will help you achieve them. And, health habits – believe it or not – are a key part to reaching any goal.

Habits are building blocks that have the power to move you closer to your goals or guide you away from them. As we explain in The ONE Thing, it typically takes 66 days to form a new habit or break an old one. So, as you think about what habits you need and don’t need, consider these small habits that may help you get on the right track!

Here are some of our suggestions for getting your 2017 habits healthy so you can better accomplish those big rocks you set this year.

1. Get Adequate Sleep

Aside from some of the obvious results of not getting a good night’s sleep – drowsiness and lack of energy for example – there are a few not-so-obvious consequences you should consider before you decide to burn some midnight oil.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, not getting enough shuteye is linked with an increased risk of motor vehicle accidents, diabetes, heart problems, depression, substance abuse and a greater likelihood of obesity caused by an increase in your appetite. As if that didn’t sound bad enough, lack of sleep also impairs your ability to pay attention, react to signals and retain new information.

The rule of thumb for adults is to get between seven and nine hours of sleep a night, and whenever we don’t get those hours of sleep, those hours accumulate into something called “sleep debt,” a biological bank that keeps track of how much sleep you’ve been getting and how much you need. Lucky for you, sleep debt can be paid off by taking a nap later in the day or by sleeping in on the weekend! However, don’t make catching up on sleep a habit. Some researchers associate sleeping over long durations with increased morbidity and mortality rates.

Make a habit of protecting your sleep by time blocking it!

2. Spend Four Minutes a Day Working Out

Are you finding it hard to dedicate a significant amount of time in your life to working out? Then consider starting out with a brief workout plan that anyone can find time for!

health habits 2014

A study released last year showed that four minutes of intense exercise three times a week, over span of ten weeks, can lower your blood pressure and decrease your shortness of breath by as much as 14%. That’s right; in about the same amount of time as it takes to listen to your favorite song, you can squeeze in a workout that produces real results.

What does that intense workout look like? Anything that increases your heart rate to a high level for four minutes will work. It can be as easy as running or jump-roping at a fast pace for four minutes at a time.

If you find yourself wanting better results, the study also showed that participants whose workout routine consisted of four, four minute intervals of intense exercise – achieving at least 70 percent of your maximum heart rate – with three minutes of rest in-between each set (25 minutes total), experienced a decrease in body fat, total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and ox-LDL cholesterol.

3. Floss Your Teeth

On average, people who floss have one more tooth than people who don’t. However, that’s not the only reason you should floss. Preventative medicine doctors claim that flossing your teeth every day can add years to your life expectancy by decreasing your risk for heart disease.

If you haven’t flossed in a while, you might notice that your gums may feel soft and bleed when you start flossing again. That softness is actually inflammation in the gums, which is a symptom of a common bacterial infection in the mouth. The chronic bacterial infection causes our bodies to work harder to get rid of the disease, which can be prevented by flossing. And when the infection is not taken care of, the bacteria can move on to other parts of your body and can cause plaque buildup in your arteries.

So, how often should you floss and brush your teeth? The American Dental Association suggests that adults should brush their teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a day. So many of us find it difficult to remember to floss every day. If you’re one of those people, try using a “trigger” to remember when it’s time for you to floss, like keeping a roll of floss next to your toothbrush!

If you have those habits down, check out The Living Life Expectancy Calculator.

Follow Us at the Lead Domino on Facebook to learn more!

Original Source: http://www.the1thing.com/blog/66-day-challenge/launch-your-new-year-goals-with-these-health-habits


The desire to stay physically fit and healthy has existed since the beginning of time. Long before we donned sneakers or special exercise gear, the ONE Thing for many was their physical wellness. Case in point? The Olympic Games, the pinnacle event for physical fitness and athleticism, is an idea that dates back approximately ten centuries to the ancient world. Despite the innate desire for us to feel healthy, we haven’t always given it the proper time it deserves and scheduled exercise into our calendars.

As recently as 1960, only 24 percent of Americans exercised regularly. As we’ve started to take a stronger look at our personal priorities, it comes as no surprise that our commitment to personal and physical health has improved in recent years. Earlier this year, it was reported that more than half (56 percent) of Americans now take time to exercise for at least 30 minutes regularly. This statistic continues to improve as the importance of being physically healthy is embraced by more people and they discover more time-sensitive options for getting the results they desire that fit into their busy schedules.

No matter how we choose to exercise, a focus on physical activity remains ONE Thing that can positively impact our health. Luckily, whether you choose to wear a tracker and walk 10,000 steps a day, practice yoga, train for an extreme obstacle course event, or something different entirely, there are endless alternatives for you to choose when you make the commitment to build a habit relating to your health.

Each year, the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal releases a comprehensive fitness report based on a survey given to thousands of health professionals. This survey contains 40 potential trends that health professionals rank from most to least popular, which are ultimately compiled together to form an annual list of worldwide fitness trends. Click on the graphic below to see how your own exercise routines compare to the latest fitness crazes.



Why Adults Need Spring Break Too

Why Adults Need Spring Break Too

Spring break isn’t something that only students should take part in. Spring is a time for renewal for everyone and everything. Across the country the weather is warming up and the new buds of the season are beginning to bloom. The outdoors are coming to life and beckoning us to take part in the experience.

Like the world around us, we need to shake off the remnants of the long winter season and get reenergized. Things may be heating up at the office as Q1 comes to a close, but a little downtime could be just what you need to replenish your energy and regain focus on your ONE Thing.

Need a few reasons to plan a Spring Break vacation? Here are four that should convince you to start packing.


Vacations Make You More Productive

Think taking time off will hurt your productivity? Forgoing vacations is actually more detrimental because never stepping away from work leads to burn out. In The ONE Thing, we point out that numerous studies and our own bodies tell us that going, going, going will only lead to exhaustion.Taking time off boosts productivity because it gives us much needed downtime, increases happiness, and decreases stress.


The Timing is Perfect

It’s been a while since the holidays, and you’re still months away from your summer vacation. Now is the perfect time for a short Spring Break trip that can help you recharge the batteries before burn out sets in.


It’s a Throwback to Your Youth

There’s nothing more invigorating than feeling like a kid again. Spring Break is a part of every kid’s youth, whether they took a family vacation or simply enjoyed the time outside. It gave us a wonderful taste of freedom from exams, homework, and responsibilities so we could just enjoy soaking up some sun after a long winter.


Quality Time with the Family

It can be a challenge for busy, working parents to square away time blocks dedicated to spending time with their kids during the school year. Since kids are off for their own Spring Break, it’s easier to coordinate schedules so you all can spend quality time as a family.


The Weather is Amazing

Summer is the high season for vacations, but, in many areas, the weather isn’t ideal. Between heat and humidity, some vacation spots could zap your energy the moment you step outside. That’s a major downside since getting outdoors can boost your health, productivity, creativity and focus. Spring is the perfect time to get outside because the temperatures are temperate and mood-boosting sunshine is in abundance!


3 Spring Break Ideas for Adults That Need to Reenergize

Now that you’re on board with taking a Spring Break, you’ve got to decide where to go. These rejuvenating, adult-friendly vacations are just what you need to unwind and recharge.


Camping on the Beach

Lots of people plan trips to the beach during Spring Break, but crowds of college students are far from relaxing. A camping trip to a state park will give you a beachfront location without all of the noise and distractions. Check the National Park Service and/or your state parks department for coastal locations that allow camping on the beach.


Float in a Boathouse

New experiences are an effective way of boosting creativity. A boathouse gives you a completely new perspective on living arrangements. Boathouses also offer easy access to water activities and gorgeous, awe-inspiring views whether you’re on a lake or river.

Honesty is the Best Policy

Honesty is the Best Policy

Is Dishonesty Holding Back Success?

We’ve all heard the saying “Honesty is the best policy.” But how closely do people adhere to it?

Honesty isn’t always easy, and at times it doesn’t come naturally. Researchers at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute have studied the brain to delve deeper into why people lie. It turns out that the vast majority of people don’t like lying, but there’s one key reason why they’ll do it anyway.


This preoccupation with ourselves can play a huge role in dishonesty. When a perceived benefit or personal gain is added to the mix, the likelihood of a lie being told increases. A person may not feel great about it, but fibs are told when the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex of the brain decides the benefit outweighs the cost.

Unlike self-interest, self-image makes people more honest. We don’t want to be perceived as a liar or selfish – especially in our own minds. As a result we’re more likely to tell the truth even if it isn’t in our best interest.

Informal social experiments by Honest Tea discovered some interesting regional and gender-related findings about honesty. Over the last few years the company set up unmanned kiosks around the U.S. in every state and Washington D.C. The kiosks offered tea for a $1, and instructed people to drop their money in a box.

Women were slightly more honest than men at a rate of 95 percent to 93 percent. Geographically the swings were much larger. In Atlanta and Indianapolis 100 percent and 99 percent of people respectively paid for their tea. However, Providence, R.I. ranked in last place over the last two years with only 83 percent of people paying their dollar for a drink. People paying in groups tended to be more honest about paying than individuals – which aligns with self-image findings that show the connection between honesty and how we wish both to perceive ourselves and others to perceive us.

The encouraging news is that over 94 percent of people were honest even though they thought no one was watching.


Dishonesty Comes at a Huge Cost

For many reasons, the tradeoffs are not worth compromising your honesty. In the moment the benefit of being less than honest may seem worth it, but in the long run that may not be the case.


Increased Stress

The guilt involved with lying can have a significant impact on a person’s stress levels. Linda Stroh of Loyola University says that’s because lying makes us feel conflicted. Her research on trust and dishonesty showed that people who lied experienced more stress than people who stuck to the truth. This corresponds with a University of Notre Dame study that found people who lied less had fewer mental and physical complaints.


Less Trust in Yourself

Trust is key with any sort of relationship from marriage to being business partners. If you’re caught in a lie the other person will certainly lose trust, which can put the relationship at risk. Sometimes the feeling of betrayal is irreparable or takes a very long time to get over. The Notre Dame study mentioned above also found that when people lied less their personal relationships improved.


Less Trust in Others

People that are less than honest are more likely to think others are lying as well. This is highlighted in a study by Dr. David John-Hughes that analyzed honesty in countries around the world. In addition to identifying which countries tended to be less honest when there was a financial gain involved, he also discovered that less honest respondents were more likely to think others would be dishonest too. This pessimistic outlook can impede your ability to create strong bonds and relationships with others.


It’s Not a Good Long-Term Solution

Lying is a quick fix. Consider the ‘yes man’. At first they may win favor by agreeing with a supervisor even though they secretly think the polar opposite. Over time the ‘yes man’ will be pegged for what he is, and his opinion won’t be held in high regard. Lies also don’t address the problem at hand. They are band-aids instead of solutions. Lies keep a person from facing reality, which can create new dilemmas down the road as they work to manage the falsehood.

How To Be Productive In Your Office

How To Be Productive In Your Office

We often think of the office as a safe haven when it comes to productivity, but that’s not always the case. Just because you’re in the office doesn’t mean you’re going to be productive, especially in today’s world.

Open office environments, offices that resemble broom closets, and shared desks are a norm for many businesses looking for solutions to restricting floorplans, which can sometimes leave employees feeling exposed to distractors. This situation is expected to worsen in the future. According to a recent survey by CoreNet Global, 40 percent of professionals expect their average office space per worker to be less than 100 square feet within five years. This is a far cry from the ideal 500 to 700 square feet sought out in the 1970’s.

With shrinking office space often comes shrinking productivity—unless you’re prepared! Contrary to popular belief, there are ways you can maintain the same level of productivity whether you’re working in an office with a view or crammed between two co-workers at a card table. While we’ve discussed working from home and working on the go in previous posts, today we discuss the office in our last installment on productive work environments. Listed below are a few strategies for you to take care of your productivity in any office configuration.


Cut out the Lyrics

If you’re an avid reader of our blog, you’re probably familiar with the suggestion that headphones can provide a great signal to others that you’re in your own “zone” and you don’t want to be disturbed.  However, there’s a good chance that once you put on your headphones, a whole new world of distractions open themselves up to you.

When you put on your headphones, start up a playlist that only features music without lyrics. Whether you’re consciously aware of it or not, when listening to music with lyrics, our brains are locked in to what we’re listening to as if we were engaged in a conversation with someone else. By cutting out the lyrics, you’re essentially cutting out the chitter-chatter going on inside of your brain, allowing you to focus on what really matters.


Decorate Your Workspace

The effects of having a familiar plant or picture hanging around your workspace can have long lasting benefits for a person’s productivity. Researchers from the University of Exeter surveyed a group of workers and found that workers who were allowed to decorate their workspaces were 32 percentmore productive than their counterparts.

If decorating your workplace is prohibited, reach out to your business leadership and ask them to consider changing the rule.


Stop Hiding Under Your Desk and Go Outside

Keeping your brain charged and ready to roll is a daily struggle for many office dwellers. If you find yourself contemplating building a nest underneath your desk to escape from distraction, it might be time to take a step outside.

Each task you handle over the span of a workday drains a percentage of the battery keeping your brain charged. Before you let your internal battery reach zero, locate the nearest exit and walk calmly toward it. Once you feel your skin cells soaking up some sunlight, take a deep breath and refresh your psyche. Try focusing on something other than the work waiting back for you at your desk. After you feel revitalized, get back inside, step up to the plate, and knock your ONE Thing out of the park!


Talk to People around You, Then Don’t

Taking breaks is crucial to staying on point in any office environment—we just covered that. If you consider yourself to be a pretty social person, or someone that is enlivened by being socially engaged, working in something that resembles an open office environment can present unique challenges for your focus. This may seem like counterproductive advice at first, but if you feel the itch to talk to someone else—do it, but set a limit to how long and when you’re allowed to talk and always keep the other person’s own interests in mind.

A quick chat is nothing to fret aboutand it may save you from stray thoughts in the future.


Manage the Micromanaging Manager

One of the challenges of a shrinking work environment is coping with the wandering eyes of a manager. It’s tempting for even the best managers to micromanage their employees when they’re within a close vicinity of their cohorts.

If you find yourself in this situation, one simple trick is to purchase a privacy screen for your computer. These screens prevent people who aren’t directly looking at your screen from seeing what you’re working on. If your situation extends beyond modest wandering eyes, the best possible solution for putting an end to micromanaging is to simply have a conversation with your manager. The whole point of management is to get the best results out of your employees. So if micromanagement is effecting your productivity, let your manager know what managing styles work best for you.


Skip the Coffee, Drink the Coffee—Whatever Works for You

We know what you might be wondering: “Do whatever works for you? What kind of life hack is that?” Well, we’ll tell you what kind of life hack that is—an honest one.

Coffee is awfully awful and goodly good for you at the same time—or at least we think so. New research is constantly flooding the scientific airwaves that both champion and admonish the merits of a warm cup of Joe in the morning. So really, the only judge for how it can make you productive in the workplace is you.

Listen to your body and decide how it affects you when you guzzle down a fresh roast. If it affects your productivity in a negative way, set up a plan to de-caffeinate yourself or find the right time where it can help you become more productive. If it affects you in a way you feel is positive, then drink it, but with the understanding that everyone has their limits and it’s up to you to learn what your personal threshold is.