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Finding the Lead Domino


I think that one place that many of us get stuck is thinking about where to start - where to start with a project, where to start in a transition, where to start period.

A couple of years ago I read a book that was recommended by someone up and coming in the Personal Development sphere, Hal Elrod, and that book really cracked open a new awareness for me. That book is titled"The One Thing" by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan. Gary Keller is part of the huge real estate empire, Keller Williams, and from his experience of squeezing a whole lot into the same 24 hours that we all have, came up with the idea that there is One Thing that literally is the lead domino to get other things in motion.

In the book they share this powerful question that I want to share here. "What is the one thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will become easier or unnecessary?" That question took a while to sink in for me and even longer to apply to my life. But it makes sense. I think oftentimes we focus on those lower level, first rung tasks that make us feel like we have forward momentum but they don't serve as high leverage actions.

I laugh now, but there was a day not long ago when I was listening to a podcast on goal achieving and while I was listening I was ironing all of the tablecloths and napkins in my closet with the idea that ironed things take up less space. While I was working away, I heard this statement, "Doing something unimportant well does not make it any more important." Snap! Busted!

So then, what does a One Thing look like in one's daily life. Is there a One Thing for the year, another for the month, and one for each week or day? To be honest, I had to start with the smallest unit - the day. When I sit down in the morning and align my calendar with my goals and needs, I ask that question of myself.

There was one particular day that I had a multitude of small tasks to do, but the thing that was really bothering me was that my desk had become really crowded and unorganized, so much so, that it created a deep uneasiness. When I applied the question to the overall situation, I realized that my One Thing that day was to clean and streamline my work space. I gave myself an hour to do it and in actually less than that hour, I created a whole different energy. But here is the fun part, it DID make everything else easier and I even solved a couple of other issues by finding documents that made something else unnecessary to do. Wow.

But this idea of the One Thing or lead domino can also impact the personal development and spiritual realm, and it is truly here that I apply it most often. In future blogs I will share more about this and how it is applied to the Clarity Process I developed from a host of amazing resources and philosophies.

So, what is your One Thing today?