August 23, 2020
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Bemoaning missed opportunities might be the sorriest excuse people give for their lack of success.   “If Only” is the more commonly used phrase.  And, like me, you’ve probably heard it from multiple people on multiple occasions.  Isn’t it sad?

It’s actually the reason I do what I do; teach, coach and consult.  I just love helping people avoid regrets.  I hate seeing dentists, who struggle so hard, come up short.

REGRET however, is self-inflicted pain.

A crisis has the ability to act as an AMPLIFIER.

It has amplified people’s insecurities as evidenced by the rise of alcohol sales and use of prescription antidepressants.
It has amplified people’s inability to focus on productive activities as witnessed by the rise in Netflix and other streaming media usage.
It has amplified shaky relationships as witnessed by the rise of domestic abuse.
It has amplified shaky business models that relied on ONE product or service, ONE revenue stream or ONE funnel.  Look at the Gym and restaurant businesses.


This amplification effect is being played out in ways that will change the way many things are done around the world.  As such, this crisis will probably be known as a SOCIETAL INFLECTION POINT.

Much like 9/11, in the future, time will be delineated as Pre-Covid and Post-Covid.  The global impact and the depth of the crater created by this and the associated events will have a monumental ripple effect.

The amplification effect on Dental Practice will be no less than in many other areas of business.  The transformation has already begun.  Few can predict where it will lead and when it will settle into a “new normal”.

What I can tell you is that it’s better to ride in front of a wave than having it crash on your head and getting swept under it.  And I’m not even a surfer!

Yet, one of the first instincts many people, especially dentists have, is to retreat into doing what they’ve always done, and how they’ve always done it.

Rather than looking at opportunities and the ‘new’ ways of doing things, docs tend to rely on what they know.

This past week a dentist actually mocked me on a webinar I was giving (through chat) because I promoted the use of Telemedicine in dental practices.

Such ‘finite’ (Simon Sinek) or ‘fixed” (Carol Dweck) thinking, during an inflection point can be devastating.  It can result in a wave crashing down on one’s head.

So what is one to do?


YOU CAN develop an “Infinite” and “Growth” mindset.  Your mind is a muscle.  With the right exercise it can grow.  With the ‘same old, same old’, it will shrink and get clogged up.

New neural pathways can be forged.

It requires DISCIPLINE.

Looking at TRENDS and envisioning HOW such trends might impact you and HOW you might deploy such trends in your practice is the start of avoiding “IF ONLY”.

The challenge is that too many dentists are playing clinical and financial CATCH UP.  They have a hard time appreciating the future value of TIME invested NOW in activities that will pay dividends down the road.

Exhausted after a day in the office wearing PPE and playing whack-a-mole with patient, staff and other problems, the urge to just have a drink, veg out and zone out is almost irresistible.

We will certainly see a rash of mental health issues arise.  Burnout will accelerate.

Let’s NOT go there.

SOME TIME must be set aside to THINK, STRATEGIZE and FOCUS on one’s health and wellbeing, activities that all have long-term benefits.

Non-pharmacologic stress reduction activities MUST be prioritized.  Mindfulness, Yoga, Exercise and other such activities can be incorporated into one’s daily routine.

A dentist is of little value to their patients, staff or family, if they’re stressed, sick or are unable to lead effectively.

Now is the time to focus on the things that ARE IN YOUR CONTROL.  And that means YOU.

YOU cannot control anyone else.  YOU cannot predict what will happen tomorrow.  YOU can only control your thoughts, actions and reactions.

NOW is the time to get healthier, less stressed and more focused.  Waiting until you’ll have more time is a formula for WOULDA, COULDA and SHOULDA.

Let’s not let this crisis AMPLIFY REGRET too.

Want some help?

Contact us at; https://practiceperfectsystems.com/

To everyone’s excellent clarity and success,

Michael, Laurie and the PPS Team


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Dr. Michael Goldberg is one of the leading educators on dental practice management in the United States.

Michael ran and sold a prestigious group practice in Manhattan and has been on Faculty at Columbia University and New York-Presbyterian Medical Center for 30 years including Director of the GPR program and Director of the course on Practice Management.

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