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3 Myths Dentists Believe that Keep Them From Massive Success

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Myths, widely held yet false beliefs or ideas, are generated throughout dentistry by chronic fear, stress, and by having a negative filter of daily situations. They are perpetuated at study clubs and conferences, in message forums or chat rooms, masked as dentists offering their experiences and advice while dripping with cynicism and jadedness. Some regularly held myths are:

Dentistry is stressful.

The best way to deal with a team member is to show them the door.
If teeth weren’t attached to people dentistry would be so much easier.
You’re a doctor so that inherently makes you different than everybody else.

Any held myth impacts how you work and live and dentistry is plagued with its unfair share of the falsely held beliefs. There are three myths that dentists believe that deeply impact their practice and personal life. They are the 3 myths dentists believe that keep them from massive success. These particular myths keep dentists stressed, hating their jobs, and leaving money on the table.

Myth #1: I’m a SUPERHUMAN!

The “I’m a SUPERHUMAN!” myth comes from the practice of over labeling yourself. As a dentist, doctor, fixer, mother, father, bread-winner, leader, and all the other labels you give yourself that you somehow are or should be more than everyone else. The “I’m a SUPERHUMAN!” mentality is perpetuated by “But I’m a Doctor” mindset. This mindset sets you apart from everyone else. You don’t connect with the team because you’re the doctor; Not sharing your struggles with anyone because you’re the doctor; you go at it alone because you’re the doctor. This myth keeps you from massive success because mentally you’re stressed, physically you’re drained and emotionally spent. There is no energy to put into anything or anyone else as this myth takes a lot of energy to perpetuate.

Myth #2: It’s not me, it’s them.

When you consistently point the finger at external people and things as a reason for your lack of achievement or success, that’s using myth #2, “It’s not me, it’s them.” The three common areas blamed are: 1) Environment: not enough equipment, old technology, practicing in a small town, practicing in a large city, insurance companies, or not enough op space; 2) People: Team members, patients, lab techs, vendors, family, or competitors; 3) Process/Systems: Front office doesn’t talk to back office, no consistency in tracking numbers, lack of job descriptions. Playing this blame game keeps you from massive success since you think, dream, and act small. You sabotage your solution choices by removing yourself out of each equation and focus on resolutions you have no control over.

Myth #3: Things are black and white.

What makes you a great dentists is your ability to think logically and problem solves through analytical decision making. Myth #3 is created when your versatility to tap into other ways of thinking, problem-solving, and decision making is low. It then taints your world view, the filter by which you interpret what you see, hear, and take in from every situation. You create a lens that has been sculpted by your upbringing, experiences, messages, that cause you to have a narrowing of your perspective. Often a single detail is focused on and all other elements, regardless of their validity and truth, are dismissed because it doesn’t fit through your lens and support your world view. Of all the myths, thinking in black/white, good/bad, right/wrong keep you from the massive success the most. You become a prisoner in your practice and life in your own way of thinking.

So now what:

Myths in dentistry are deeply rooted in the belief structure past down from professor to student and mentor to the predecessor. It’s going to take a cultural shift to eradicate these false beliefs. As with any movement, it starts with the individuals willing and wanting to work and life differently. Those looking not to settle and be like everyone else, rather wanting to live their legacy today by leaving a large footprint of change within their industry and the lives of the people they serve. The first step is to acknowledge change is needed. After that, you’re creating your own path to massive success and not the myths dentists believe.

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