Part 1 - The Big Picture
We go to dental school, to residency, and then finally (it seems), we are ready to go into practice. Did you have any idea what that entailed?
Did you know anything about a business?
Did you even know what you wanted practice to be like? I daresay you assumed it would give you a place to do your outstanding orthodontic or dental care, a job, and an income. Oh - and if it was your own practice, you got to "be your own boss.”
Now what does your practice look like? It does give you a place to do your outstanding orthodontic or dental care, right? It's probably more of a job than you bargained for, and an income - with more going out in expenses than you would have dreamed - or than you want!
And in practice for yourself you get to be your own boss - and work longer hours than the rest of the staff, unless you want to pay a lot of overtime and entrust some of the challenging business things to them (and you’re not sure if that’s good).
There are challenges - insurance, corporate dentistry, competition, "the books,” taxes and expenses - well - that stuff just about can drive you nuts. And affect your well-being - physical, mental and emotional - and your family, and, quite frankly, your sanity.
How’s it workin’ for ya? As the leader of your business, it’s your job to think about the bigger picture.
And there is, believe it or not, a bigger picture. A way bigger picture.
What is in the bigger picture that is missing from the picture you have now?
IF your practice is a reflection of you - and it is - then who you are defines the picture. And who you are is something to figure out. Who are you? What do you want? What do you want your life to be? And when you get that figured out, then how do you get there?
“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of. You don't have charge of the constellations, but you do have charge of whether you read, develop new skills, and take new classes.” ~ Jim Rohn
Changing your life comes from figuring out who you are and what you want life to be.
And changing who you are comes from changing what and how you think. Changing what you think can come from changing your actions, your words and expressions, your food, your exercise, your activities, and who you hang with.
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” ~ Jim Rohn
Back to your practice. If you have a desire and need to change anything about your practice, work ON you first. Einstein once said, “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”
Don’t let it overwhelm you. You can change you by changing the tiniest decisions, tiniest habits, tiniest actions, one at a time. Today take time to meditate. Today take time for a walk or run. Today go home at a reasonable hour from the office. Think about what you want, who you are, who you want to be. Maybe - write some of your thoughts down.
Next in Part 2 of How’s it workin’ for ya? - Those five people you hang with
Dr Chris Baker (on left) leads orthodontics and pediatric dentistry CE courses worldwide.
Dr Chris Baker
Dr. Chris Baker is Past President of the American Orthodontic Society, a pediatric dentist and teacher of orthodontics, An author, dental practice consultant, mentor, and a current or former faculty member of three U.S. dental schools, Dr Chris practices and blogs in beautiful Abu Dhabi, UAE, and glorious Texas, USA.
Text and images
© 2019 Dr Chris Baker