Dr. Allison and Shawn share an honest conversation about the power of mindset and personal narrative. Many of us are feeling overwhelmed, trapped and discouraged in these challenging times. Maybe you feel like you’re not enough as you carry the weight of this pandemic and how  it has affected your practice, your family, and your patients. When external circumstances are difficult, it’s easy to slip into a victim mentality.  This profound discussion will encourage you to identify the areas in which the narrative you are believing could be holding you back.

Why does mindset matter? Our mindset informs our actions. If we feel like we are a victim to the pandemic, or our practice staff, or our families’ needs, we are powerless. When we remind ourselves of our victories, and we choose to be resilient, we remember our power. We are not victims to our circumstances but can now use our difficulties to propel us toward growth. In this way we rewrite our stories.

In weightlifing, when the weight you are attempting is too heavy, you can choose to give up, or to go back to your training ground and rebuild yourself to be able to manage that heavier weight. You assess your strengths and weaknesses and you are vulnerable with others who have wisdom to impart. This same assessment applies to our lives. By taking an honest look at the narrative we’re believing, we can see where victim mentality has slipped in. Once we see it we can turn it around. We can see the areas where we need to build ourselves up and come up with a plan to strengthen ourselves so we can carry the weight of leadership, that earlier threatened to crush us.

Full Transcript Below

Shawn: (00:59)
Hey guys, this is Shawn and Allison with the authentic dentist. And I am actually like very excited about our podcast today for a lot of reasons. And, and one of them is that we are actually coming out with a course that is going to be live in August. Right now it is June end of June. And just thinking about what it is that we’re talking about. Like everybody wants a practice that matters. That’s going to be profitable and fulfilling, and that’s what they want to have, but not everyone knows how to necessarily get there. So we’re going to be talking about, you want to practice that matters, but in order to have a practice that matters, you need to have a team that is unified and aligned with your mission and your brand, but how are they going to do that? If you don’t start with that, your brand, your mission, what you care about. And that is exactly what our course is going to be on. It’s going to be on the authentic Venice and what that means to be an authentic dentist.

Allison: (02:12)
I think that a lot of times we like to start with the end, you know you want to go in and lift really heavy weights, but you don’t want to go in and start with just the movement and the flexibility. And that’s what all of us seem to start with. We really want this practice of our dreams, but you can’t have the practice of your dreams. If you, you personally are not at your best. It’s just, if you’re the leader of the team, you have to be at your best.

Shawn: (02:41)
And we think it’s so important. Just to, I don’t know what to care about developing yourself and growing and being at your best. Cause we really, I think that’s one of the exciting things for me every single year. I don’t know, every time I have a birthday, I’m just thinking, what is this next year gonna look like?

Shawn: (02:59)
Like how can, what areas can I step it up? What areas can I challenge myself? And for me, I love that challenge. And Alison, when I look at you, I like you’re constantly challenging yourself to listen more when you’re with patients to lead your team in a more intentional way. And I absolutely love that. So if that’s you that’s so much of what we’re going to be talking about in this course, you know, we have five pillars and it starts off with significance and why it matters for you to be at your best today in dentistry. And then we’re going to share about vision and how it’s so important for you to understand as Allison was saying, what that end is that you’re shooting for, because that’s going to help you with the next section, which is your authentic self and really understanding what it is you believe about dentistry and about the style of dentistry that makes you come alive.

Allison: (03:52)
And then we’re going to be talking about mindsets and ultimately the habits that you need to have to succeed in dentistry today. So we’re super excited about the course. But today I think we’re talking more about the power of your, your narrative and the narrative that you believe and how that can impact you. So, you know, it’s funny cause you always think that the systems you created and you know, the market is affecting your practice, but a lot of times it’s you. In fact, I would say most of the time, it’s you, that’s running the practice and making decisions. And a lot of times we think that the clinical piece is what matters the most. And we spend tons of money on continuing education and becoming better with our hands, but we don’t give enough time thinking about the narrative about ourselves. And so I’m going to share a little bit about the narrative that I’m dealing with.

Allison: (04:46)
We’re still in this pandemic and the story or the narrative that I’ve been telling myself lately is that I’m a victim. And I don’t know why I fall back into that pattern, but I do. And I fall back into a pattern of I’m a victim to, COVID not because I’m sick, but because it’s affected my practice so much, and I’m a victim of the insurance companies and they’re limiting and things that they say to patients make me feel limited and sometimes even feel a victim to my team that they don’t seem to be on board with me. But when you walk into the office and you think like that we’ve set the tone for your entire day of, well, I’m a victim. And so I just have to do whatever I have to do. Let’s just suck it up and do what we have to do.

Allison: (05:34)
Well, that’s not, that’s not making me at my best. It doesn’t encourage my team. It doesn’t encourage my patients. So you have to fall out of that narrative. You have to just rewrite your story. And it’s hard because my story is true, but there’s other pieces of my story. That’s true. Also, that would be more positive. So first off, I just want to thank you for just sharing that again, the transparency that you walk in, it really just takes courage, Alison to just talk about like real fears, like real things that you’re going through right now. So thank you. I think the more we step up and don’t mind talking about real life, like the faster we can, I don’t know, come out of this stronger. And we keep saying that together. We’re stronger. And again, I just want to thank you for that.

Shawn: (06:31)
And next it’s like, I think it’s kind of like one of those, like well-known things like victims, the problem with like that mentality is that it renders you powerless by nature. That that’s almost like the definition of feeling like a victim is you don’t feel you have power when you need that connection to your personal power to get through this. Exactly. Exactly. If I believe that I have no power, then I don’t. I mean, that’s the reality, whatever you believe is what will happen. And so if I go in and say, wow, COVID has forced me to be a much better leader. COVID has forced me to really look at my numbers and pay attention. Well, then it’s a positive, you know, I’m going to go in there and make my practice amazing because COVID has given me a new opportunity. That’s a different mindset.

Shawn: (07:28)
It’s still true. It’s still all true, but the mindset makes me different. I love that though, because it’s not changing reality. It’s not being delusional about what’s actually happening. It’s just choosing to have a perspective on it. That’s going to release life empowerment, encouragement, and fuel your inspiration to keep going. Instead of being a hindrance of roadblock, almost something that would stifle a flow of, again, energy, power, inspiration. And right now, I don’t know about you, but I need as much access to just being at my best now. And, and my team needs that for me, you know my family, just everyone needs me to be at my best. So yeah, it’s like, I dunno, it’s just, what’s, what’s what’s needed. So everyone needs you to be at your best, but you have to want to be at your best. And you have to, to put that in, you know, you have to, what does it feel to tank or put the oxygen mask on?

Allison: (08:39)
Yes. Yes. And I think we’ve all been running on nothing for a long time now just trying to manage this and it’s time that we, okay, why do I need to do to nurture myself in order to really be the person I want to be, to be the leader I want to be. And one of those things that you’re talking about with perspective is how we actually view I would say almost like the weight of this, this pandemic, you know, we were talking about when it comes to, to weightlifting, it’s like people would like to get stronger. Generally. You know, those that walk into the gym, they want to get stronger. They want to look better. They want to feel better. They want to move toward optimal health, but what’s in their way is lots of, lots of iron that needs to be moved consistently.

Shawn: (09:32)
And it’s kind of like, that’s not the ch that’s not the, how do I say this? That’s not the problem. That’s the opportunity. So I always look at it from my Olympic weight lifting background. And when you get on the platform, you want to lift this weight, the clean and jerk, but sometimes it’s too heavy and that’s what COVID is right now. It’s just this really heavyweight on the platform that I can’t move well. I mean, I have the opportunity to just say, okay, forget it. I’m not Olympic weightlifter anymore. I’m gonna go home, but that’s not really my best choice. I can’t just ignore it. So what do I have to do? Well, I’m going to go and do some squats in the gym and do some polls. I’m going to build all these other pieces of myself so that when I get back on that platform, I can clean and jerk it.

Allison: (10:20)
And what I mean by that is, okay, so what are the squats right now? Okay. I’m looking at my overhead. Can I drop my overhead? Let’s, let’s look at that piece and build on it. What are the other pieces at? What’s my recall system look like that’s another, that’s the, that’s the shrugs, you know, how do I build all those pieces so that when I come back and I would deal with COVID, I’m stronger. And that’s the thing. So if we’re looking at it in this analogy as like the person in the gym or the Olympic weightlifter, it’s like, I could see why people might feel trapped because let’s say I have this dream and I don’t know how important it is to me, but maybe it’s a side thing and it just would be nice if I looked better, felt stronger and I get up to the bar and I realized, yeah, I can’t do that today.

Shawn: (11:06)
Well, in that scenario, a lot of people can just cancel the gym membership, not walk back in or talking about a livelihood. We’re talking about professional. We’re talking about the practice so I can understand this. Like, Oh my gosh, I can’t, I don’t have any other option. And I could see why they’d feel like you just feel like you’re just going to keep trying to lift that weight. That’s too heavy. Well, that’s just a recipe for disaster. That’s how you get hurt. You have to step back and figure out how am I going to make myself better so that I can lift that weight. You know? And so much of this is just a brilliant analogy. So thank you, Alison, because it’s like, well, you want to figure out how to lift this weight. I mean, I love the progressions, but it’s like, how do you find out what those progressions are?

Shawn: (11:49)
You find out by talking to other people in the gym that be further along than you are again together, we’re stronger. You find out by hiring a personal trainer, getting a coach, finding out someone that has a different perspective, maybe more expertise together, we’re stronger. And then they lay that out. Hey, right now your core is not strong enough for you to be able to even do a squat. It’s not about your leg strength. It’s about your core strength. So they lay out this plan. So right now it’s like, okay, let’s take a step back. You know, find out who you need to talk to and just start thinking of how can I break this out into some steps, small, actionable things that I can do, because when it’s just, I somehow have to get my practice through this. And it’s the large lift.

Allison: (12:38)
It seems impossible, but it’s not, it’s not impossible, but it does require some vulnerability. It does require that you, you recognize that when you go back and you try and squat, you don’t know how and you ask, but you can, you know where those vulnerable pieces are. It may not know all the things that would make you stronger, but you know, some of them. So it does require that you’re you’re vulnerable. And you allow somebody to see that this part of my life is not as perfect as I wanted it to be. And in order to really lift that weight, I’m going to have to make that better. When I, again, I love going back to the narrative thing. It’s like, if you believe that you’re never going to be strong or capable or that you don’t have that, I don’t know, like resiliency in your own identity.

Shawn: (13:28)
No, I got this. Then you’re walking out of the gym. You’re not talking to that trainer. You count the cost and you go, no, I can’t do this. You know, but that’s where we want to remind you. If you’re hearing those negative thoughts right now about you not being enough, a you are a dentist, which means you are resilient. You have gotten through incredibly challenging times already to be where you are at. And just go back in your history and remind yourself of so many of those victories that you’ve had to have the first time that your team seemed to collapse and nothing could survive or function. How did you get through that? You know, that first time that the patient completely blew up because they couldn’t stand the restorative work that you just did. You survived, you got through it. Like you’re stronger than, you know, call upon those past victories and remind yourself, you found a way to get through it.

Shawn: (14:20)
And you’re going to find a way to get through this too. So I have a challenge. I think you should go home and you should write down the three things that you, that your, your narrative right now. And just be totally brutally honest. What are the three things that you feel like you’re a victim of? And once you see that and you need to turn it around. So, like I said my first one is that I feel like I’m a victim of covet and I’m a victim because it’s impacted my practice and my livelihood and my opportunity here, my growth is to step back and say, okay, so what pieces of my practice have always been an Achilles heel and how can I fix them so that I’m better. And that’s an opportunity. That’s, that’s looking at the glass half full. And that makes me feel better about when I go into work. Okay. So we’re going to tackle this today. This is going to be okay. Guys, we really hope that this encouraged you. And if at all, you like what we’re sharing here again about deeper beliefs and mindsets. This is just kind of a really introduction to it. We’re going to do a much deeper dive, kind of go over the frameworks and everything in our course. Once again, that’s going to be live in August. So we’re just excited for you to check it out.

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