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  • Writer's pictureWarren Bobinski

What we learned from toothpaste

“Depending on what they are, habits will either make us or break us. We become what we repeatedly do…”

When you check back on my musings, you will see the words often begin with caffeine and warm beds. Sunrises. Actually, just telling you I do that - shows you that this is a place that I usually start!

I guess you could say it's my trigger to start writing. It's not too hard to describe those things you do every day, and enjoy so much! It's a lot harder to begin writing if you haven't an inspiration!

So ya, the usual morning....deeply comfortable bed, cold room, start a fire, drink two cups....blah, blah blah.

Pop open the laptop, crank some vintage tunes on the Sonos. READY TO ROCK!


Maybe I need an apple, haven't eaten yet and it's distracting. Oh, the fruit bowl is empty. Need to go to the fridge downstairs. Grab such apple, and some oranges while I am at it. And some purple bubly water. Need a bag to carry it. Got it. Get upstairs and put such items in fruit bowl. Rinse with Sparrow EO Water.

Sparrow EO - Newest product from Egret Lab Canada

Uh oh - Dishes in the sink.

Do the dishes. Electrolyze them (notice the shameless plugs for EO water!)

Kiss Karen goodbye as she heads to work. Turn the tunes up even louder. Stoke the fire. Dance a little bit.....

What the hell am I going to write about today. It's been too long. Wasn't really fond of the last few posts. Didn't even want to do a FB live, or transform them to Podcast.

If you have ever seen the movies about writers block....that's how it feels! There is ZERO pressure to write for me though. There is no deadline, and often I talk myself out of the work involved....The problem, as some of you know if you write, or honestly have trouble talking yourself into any task is the "depression and self-loathing" that is lurking.

You KNOW you should get your ass off the couch and work out, but maybe tomorrow. Perhaps you should get out of bed earlier - but it's just so warm and you drift back asleep so easily. That broccoli would need to be cooked, and its better with cheese...actually it's better if someone else makes it too...and actually, now that I see the menu there are way more things that I will eat, just today and then tomorrow will be -

#1 - Wake up early

#2 - Workout for an hour

#3 - Eat raw broccoli for breakfast.

Ya, that's the ticket.

Or, maybe you just finally get inspired and the words start to finally come! Maybe the subject today can be about habits. Atomic Dental Habits.

How do I spin this to a blog related to what we do everyday. Hmmmmmm....I wonder when and how people decided they needed to brush their teeth everyday?

Research. Aha! Here we go!

Back in the early part of the 1900s, few people brushed their teeth. It sounds ridiculous, but the diets at the time were quite different as well! By the early part of the 1900s, we started enjoying sugary treats and drinks in abundance - and what happened next became a "National Security Threat" as world war two approached. According to Don Grimes, in his book "The Craving Brain; How to create new habits" the government recognized the abundance of tooth decay and related health issues for the troops about to embark on a mission.

Pepsodent was already around for many years, but brushing was not a routine that anyone enjoyed or thought they needed. How could a company that wanted to "sell" a product convince people they needed to brush? Was it best to take a route to scare people "This is what happens if you don't brush!" or was there a better way....

Enter marketing genius Claude Hopkins.

Hopkins was famous for helping develop Quaker oatmeal into a daily morning habit for consumers by promoting the idea that in order to maintain your health you should start each morning with a bowl of Quaker many of us still do that!

Hopkins decided to follow an identical blueprint to turn toothpaste into a national habit -and with it, Pepsodent. The wording on his ad read: “Just run your tongue across your teeth. You’ll feel a film – that’s what makes your teeth look ‘off-color’ and invites decay.” His ad had images of smiling people with beautiful white teeth which seemed to reinforce the cue on which he would anchor his marketing.

The ad further read: “Note how many pretty teeth are seen everywhere. Millions are using a new method of teeth cleaning. Why should any woman have dingy film on her teeth? Pepsodent removes the film!”

In just a few years, this type of advertising turned a product into a daily habit!

Imagine the early days of "brushing your teeth". There had to be a GOAL and a REWARD in order to convince people. It wasn't enough to know teeth would rot out of your head. It was nice that teeth would no longer rot - but the truly convincing part was the ego. Imagining that people could SEE that film on your teeth, the same film you could feel with your own tongue! The only way to KNOW you had removed that film was the minty tingly feeling on your could TASTE that your mouth was clean.....

Cue, Film on teeth - Routine, Brush Reward, minty tingly feeling

Dentistry owes a lot of credit to Claude Hopkins - as we have built on that "clean mouth" marketing! Yet, even today, we tend to use "scare tactics" to convince people to visit regularly rather than a reward based system.

It's been almost 20 years since Invisalign hit the market. Products drive consumers. The right marketing has asked people to look at their they have a healthy smile - yet there is so much more that can be done.....

“Goals are good for setting a direction, but systems are best for making progress.”

For many years you have heard me talk about Continual Improvement.

Accomplishing Success in Dentistry AND Life is all about Continual Improvement. Not only dental acumen. We need to form a keenness and depth of perception, discernment and discrimination of practical matters, our daily routines! Not just dentistry but that of Life.

Its not enough to read it. To hear someone preach it. We need to get up, lift a finger and apply what was learned. MOVE!

When researching this subject, I observed a social link that helped form better habits. As much as we want to believe "we do this for ourselves" - we often are driven by others?

Working out and eating better often comes as a cue from another person. Wanting to "look like them" or "be healthier" like our doctor said. Less cavities and healthier smile - thanks to your hygienist and dentist!

Cue! Reward - beautiful smile!

We feel better about ourselves from the encouragement of others. They "LIKE" what we are doing - which motivates us to do it again.

This is why an investment in a COACH is so valuable! You now have someone that will "trigger" you to perform something that is "good for you" and if you stick to it long enough the reward. You lose the weight, you feel healthier, your business thrives.....

How business can thrive from habits....

You workout like crazy. Eat right. Meditate. CoEd is your middle name. Hands on. course after course. Improvement after improvement.

Then you go to the office you own to apply these principals of health and welfare....but the business is not improving.

You are so busy applying the principals to yourself, are you applying these to your business?

Have you taken the time to get your business fit? That would be learning exactly how to make the machine efficient. Its about learning to run. Swing faster. Hit harder. Always drain the putt. Top shelf that puck. A fit business has a PROCESS that takes a TEAM. A team that is PRACTICING, again and again and again. They can close their eyes and know exactly what is coming next. This team is MOTIVATED as they can see that this is all about THEM first! There is a reward for the extra hard work it takes to get fit and be the best at what they do. They are motivated and understand the process.

Have you taken the time to get your business eating right? It takes time to learn TIMEfactors. Getting lean doesn't necessarily mean eating only broccoli that you found on sale. It means finding the BEST nutrition. The most DENSE and HEALTHY product that gives you the most bang for the buck. It could mean getting rid of the SUGARY SWEET impression material and investing in DIGITAL. Because once it's cooked properly and becomes a habit - the end result is an amazing and nutrient rich meal. Everyone who has eaten this, and makes it regularly understands this. Once you LEARN the HABIT and get good at it - you will NEVER go back to the sugary sweet....

Have you taken the time to make it a habit? The reward is the final product. The product nobody else has, or can touch. Only you and your people can make that product because you practice so much and you are damn good at it.

Coming to your office is an experience unlike any other office. From the incredible, easy to navigate mobile website, to the online check in. The reminder that is so incredibly efficient that nobody wants to miss an appointment. The experience of the receptionist who not only understands the patient, but the efficiency of the team relies on how they handle the bookings and the check outs. The assistant that presents the ultra clean and clutter free treatment area making the patient feel comfortable. The assistant that has the room ready to go, and the doctor knows is so highly trained they could almost perform the treatment themselves. The hygienist that educates every patient and motivates them to come back as the menu of options expands...

The final product is amazing, and the patient leaves wanting to come back and experience it again....telling friends about it.

They go home to brush and floss, thinking about how the smile attracted their life partner. Got them their dream job. Influenced the cashier to offer a discount. The healthy smile is only good and maintained by a health diet. Which also encouraged them to walk a little more today.....

What an amazing business you have there, if only you are using the example of toothpaste.

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