I don't know if any snowboard instructors here will correct me, but I feel like you should completely eliminate the falling leaf from your riding from now on. The only thing it will do now is make you want to stay on your toe/heel edge instead of switching between them (linked turns). The quicker you break the falling leaf habit, the quicker you'll be able to link turns.
Also I'm not sure if this tip will help you personally or not, but when I went with my friend for the first time he was linking turns a couple hours into his first day. It clicked for him when he thought of it as "heel side ---> straight down the hill for a split second ---> toe side ---> straight down the hill for a split second ---> heel side ---> etc." It caused the transition to make more sense for him instead of going directly from heel side to toe side. Smoothed it out a bit.