Undertaking the Confidence Quest and Designing Your Epic Life

Undertaking the Confidence Quest and Designing Your Epic LifeHello everyone, and welcome back to The Relentless Dentist! We’re excited to have you as we enter into this new era, with Karah now helming her independent show – The Leading Dentist – and me (Dave!) staying put here. We thought this would be the best way for us to continue delivering targeted, valuable content to you, our community.

Today’s episode is a fitting topic as we head in this new direction. You’ll hear my speech from last year’s Voices in Dentistry Summit in Nashville, Tennessee, titled “The Confidence Quest”. In this speech, I talk about my own lack of confidence in dental school and afterward, especially after life threw Karah and I some serious curveballs.

I also share some of the key books, quotes, and thinkers that helped me change my mindset around confidence and leadership. I cover the three hallmarks of confidence, the eulogy exercise that can save you from regret, and five steps to boost your confidence.

Key Quotes:

  • The thing that has always driven me crazy about dentistry is we always see everyone’s best stuff.
  • The more I learn about the psychology of success, the more I believe that 75%, more, of the and struggles in your practice, are caused by the way you’re thinking.
  • This is the problem that I struggle with in dentistry, because I always see everyone’s best work: I hear about their production and not their collections or their overhead; I see their cars and their fancy houses, but I don’t know how they feel when they go to work.
  • It’s super important that we define what our success looks like and head in that direction
  • When you feel that resistance, lean into it; it’s “the obstacle is the way,” and when you see the obstacle, run toward it.
  • It’s important that you realize that you’re worthy of your epic life.
  • Building your confidence is an insurance policy
  • Struggling with confidence is the limiting factor in your favorite rockstar, your favorite author, the dentists you look up to.

Featured on the Show:


“You’re responsible!” with Dr. Aaron Nicholas

Quotes & Notes:"You're responsible!" with Dr. Aaron Nicholas - Relentless Dentist Podcast

  • I looked for practices to purchase, and went around and didn’t really see anything that I liked and so I decided that I would open up from scratch.
  • Perception is reality, it’s kind of my big thing.

I remember reading some studies, somewhere that said: A patient has to hear things five or six times before it actually entered up in the brain.

  • I kind of felt like I just been searching my way in the dark, my whole career…I look behind me, I’m like Wow, that worked out really well.
  • Is the business and the constantly changing landscape of that…it kept me interested.
  • Before you, out of hands go no, there is no way, take a look and see if that makes sense.
  • I will pick CE courses based on can I go home Monday morning and can I then start doing this stuff? So then it will help my practice out.
  • You are responsible. Doesn’t matter what it is, stuff happens and you do whatever you do. You are responsible.

Check out Monday Morning Dentistry. You can call Dr. Nicholas at 410.207.3527. For a discount on his website – the discount code is relentless.  


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Being Empowered by the Numbers with Weston Lunsford, CEO of Dental Intel

Quotes & Notes:Being Empowered by the Numbers with Weston Lunsford - RD Podcast

  • I am a big believer that if something shows up on your financial statement, you are too late to change it, right? It’s already there, you can’t do anything about it.
  • Everyone measures the productions, the collections, and the new patient. And it’s great because we want to know where they are at. But I just simply ask the question afterward, (…)if you didn’t hit your mark this week, why? Why didn’t you hit it?
  • It’s is it, we are coming into the practice and we are really hoping that everything falls into place so that we hit our goals. But we don’t really understand what the leading indicators are, or the leading actions to really hit those goals.
  • There is a formula that equals production, and this is it:

We take our appointment, we multiply our appointments by our average production per visit and that equals production.

  • The first and foremost is making sure that we are being effective and efficient with the patients that are coming in our chairs.
  • How do you know if you have a healthy data culture? Is the team celebrates together around successes but when there’s not successes the team is also collaborating happily together to identify possible solutions.
  • If we want a healthy data-driven culture, that it is a culture where everyone is working together for the success of patient care and the success of the practice, both those things will be met. And that can be possible with good timely accurate data.
  • So we have a rule, here is a good rule (…) Before giving any kind of feedback we believe that there should be three celebrations, even if you have to search hard for those celebrations. Three celebrations and then we don’t even call it feedback, it’s one helpful observation. It’s not saying what they are doing wrong. It’s a helpful observation, but you have to celebrate first.

What I want to focus on is instead of new patients, focus on your patient growth.

  • And David, we spend so much money on trying to attract new patients, but we put little effort on keeping our patients in the chair.

Dental Intel’s website: http://dentalintel.com/. Click on “GET STARTED” and type in “Relentless Dentist Podcast” for a schedule to review your practice data for free.

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Dr. Justin Short on “Do You Want It Bad Enough?”

Quotes & Notes:justin_short

  • You know what? I want to switch this up, I’m going to revolve my practice around my life.

I have developed my practice to fit the lifestyle I wanted.

  • At the end of the day, None of it has been to, you know, just because “I want to be rich”. It’s I like the income because of the freedom that it buys me. And the freedom that I get to spend with my family, is predominately why I do it, it’s just some “money can’t buy”.
  • We do good and I wouldn’t trade the lifestyle that it affords me for anything. It’s just, there’s no trade.

I’m a big believer you can pretty much accomplish whatever it is you want in life if you want it bad enough. For me at least if I want something bad enough I’m going to figure it out.

  • I was talking with my mom about kind of the different opportunities I can pursue in college and I was really hem and haw about going more than four years (…) I don’t want to be stuck in college until the 26th and then she stopped me and said: You know what? You’re going to be 26 either way, and it’s going to be here before you know it and then she told me you can be anything you want to be.
  • The biggest thing I have learned in dentistry since I started that is really taking my practice to a different level is the realization that for me Dentistry is 80% about people, 20% about teeth. I like I said earlier, I think all of us know how to do crowns, we all know how to get composites, most of us are getting to the point where we can do a little bit of ortho, or implants, etc. But at the end of the day the people who are rising above are the ones who can manage people and not just manage your staff but manage your patients.
  • All comes down to relationships with the patients.
  • You don’t have to be Dentist 5 or 10 years to really gain success, but you have to be intentional about it, you’ve got to learn you’ve got to get the right help and if you do, you can shortcut that learning curve tremendously.

To learn more about his academy and services, you can go to thelifestylepractice.com. You can also email him at justin@thelifestylepractice.com

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Jen Butler on 3 Toxic Behaviors Poisoning Dentists Daily Lives

Quotes & Notes:jen-b

  • Stress is not outside of you, stress is an internal biological process that you have influence over.
  • Since all of our colleagues, our friends, our family, use the words I’m so stressed out regularly in their lives, people think that it’s normal.

The number one word I hear (from dentists) is the dreads.

  • The first behavior is what I call the super human complex. Doctors have this thought about themselves from their ego where they feel like they have to be this fix it person one hundred percent of the time.
  • The second behavior is “It’s not me it’s them.” That becomes toxic when the doctor does it so frequently that they absolve themselves of any influence of control over any situation, where they actually become a victim to their situation.
  • The third behavior is this: things are good/bad, black/white, right/wrong type thinking. When it comes to running a practice, this type of thinking leads them to being very tight minded.

All of these behaviors prevent people from being curious. And curiosity, that’s how we grow.

  • Our thoughts and what we say so often comes out of our unconscious mind and so unless someone records us we really have no idea what we said or how we said it.
  • One of the things I say to myself daily is “I can’t change what I don’t acknowledge.”

To learn more about her seminars and service you can go to jenbutlerpartners.com. You can also email her at jen@jenbutlerpartners.com.

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Dr. Cory Glenn on “What’s Truly Important”

Quotes & Notes:Dr. Cory Glenn on "What's Truly Important" - Relentless Dentist Podcast

  • I really went from a perspective of thinking that success is measured in money, in prestige and all that, to see that success is really measured in your contentment in life.

It’s not all about meeting the next goal; sometimes it’s about the journey of getting to it.

  • There are far more patients out there than can be treated by our specialist (for implants), and that’s the same with our ortho, same with endo. They aren’t there to do every single procedure of a certain sub-type; they are to do the ones that require special training.
  • At this point, I think what’s going to differentiate “implantologists” is not who can just put a titanium screw into bone. What’s going to differentiate people going forward is their ability to do hard tissue grafting, soft tissue grafting, things like that.

This is the best job on earth, if you feel this way (that the sky is always falling) then change your situation.

  • Don’t be a slave to money and status, because so many of us get roped into thinking that we have to make ‘X’ amount of dollars a month and I understand that we need to make money but if that really all your career boils down to, then you are going to find yourself doing procedures that you hate, in a practice that you hate.

You can learn more about Blue Star Academy at blueskybio.academy.  Be sure to also check out Practice on Fire at practiceonfirelive.com.

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What is Oral Wellness? with Dr. Tom Larkin

Quotes & Notes:What is Oral Wellness? with Dr. Tom Larkin - RD Podcast

  • I know almost everybody in my class was ready to go out and start a practice when they graduate, but today that is a rarity. The young students don’t feel prepared.
  • At the end of the day, oral infections are a pretty simple thing to treat when you know what you are going after. Everything boils down to risk assessment.
  • Here’s what dentists need to know when you approach patients this way (with the saliva test), because if someone fails this test everything you do from that point forward is guaranteed to fail.
  • Very aggressive movement (of bacteria on the digital display) is a disease and a slide biofilm that is quite is healthy.

We are looking for balance, so when things are out of balance, that means disease. Getting back into balance is a relatively simple thing once you have some products and just a little bit of expertise.

  • I am of the opinion that every tooth should be sealed, from young adult and adult, because I am putting an insurance policy against future biology.
  • If you have a hygiene department that is efficient and productive I see so many people that come in more confident.
  • Don’t be afraid of stepping out.
  • You need to practice what you preach. If I am going to talk about periodontal disease, then I better make sure that my mouth is healthy.

If you would like to learn more from Dr. Tom Larkin then you can email him at tom@tomlarkin.com or go to his website, oralwellnesscenter.org.

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Discover the Office Manager Role with Laura Hatch

Quotes & Notes:Discover the Office Manager Role with Laura Hatch - RD Podcast

  • In about 2013 I decided that there needed to be a training resource for office managers, front office teams, for dental offices to teach us how to do the things we do at the front desk.
  • Sometimes being an office manager, you feel like you are on an island by yourself. The staff doesn’t necessarily see eye to eye with you, the doctor many times is not trained in business, they are trained in being a clinician, and you are kind of in the middle.
  • What I focus more on is how to motivate your team, how to communicate with different style personalities that work for you.

When things aren’t happening because someone’s not holding the team accountable, that’s when you need to make sure that (you have an office manager).

  • There’s value to experience, but attitude is a far higher level for me.
  • The doctor should be delegating to the office manager as much as possible.
  • When an issue comes up there needs to be a system and the more than the front of the office and the office manager can get that documented and get that trained to their staff, the more the patients are going to have a sense of trust and be ok with what your policies are.

In the dental office, I feel that the dental office manager is the head and the doctor is the neck.

  • You have to lead by example. You can’t tell your kids don’t smoke and they go smoke a cigarette.

If you would like to learn more, be sure to check out frontofficerocks.com or their YouTube page/Facebook page for snippets of their videos.

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Laura Hatch: Front Office Rocks

Quotes & Notes:Laura Hatch: Front Office Rocks - Relentless Dentist Podcast

  • So I really got thrown in dental with no experience, I mean I didn’t know teeth had numbers, had surfaced, so much like many other people, we just got thrown into this position.

I’m an office manager at heart, and I wanted to build something that I could help other offices and their team.

  • For me being married to a dentist, I know that my husband got no business training in dental school. And then when I went to start working in dental, there were no resources for me, so my focus is the team, my focus is the staff, to be able to have a resource to go to.
  • You don’t have to know dental to work at a front office, you know you have to have great customer service, and you have to be a team player, and you have to work hard and smile, that’s the kind of stuff we can’t teach employees.

I wanted to develop a program that was consistent with new employees.

  • It’s a great way to just bring in enhancement to the employee; I have a lot of offices that use it as team training.

If the patients aren’t happy, and we’re not answering the phones well, and we’re not reappointing the patients, the practice isn’t going to grow.

  • I think the biggest thing for me is attitude, is drive, we have to remember that even though we are health care professionals, we’re in a customer service environment.
  • You should invest in your team, you know employees worry about their salary, but that’s not what motivates them most, it’s do you invest in them.

If you would like to learn more, be sure to check out frontofficerocks.com or their YouTube page/Facebook page for snippets of their videos.

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Dr. Chris Phelps – The 7 Pillars to Marketing Magic (Part 2)

Quotes & Notes:

  • What matters more about whDr. Chris Phelps - The 7 Pillars to Marketing Magic (Part 2) - RD Podcastether people say yes to picking up the phone is really the headline that may be all they need. In fact few sometimes even going into the content.

The majority of men actually prefer the content to be bullet-points, highlights, and pictures. Women, on the other hand, studies have shown, they love the story.

  • When you start competing on price whether you realize it or not, we all lose.
  • How do we get a better quality patient? Well, the offers I like to do are called gift at purchase, I like to give away a free electric flosser or electric toothbrush with paid new patient exams.
  • Let other people’s giveaway be your offer.

You need some way to get the data you need to make smart decisions.

  • You have to keep the positive, progress not perfection and it never hurts to throw in a bonus.
  • The six principals are reciprocity, liking, consensus (social proof), authority, consistency, and scarcity. And a little known thing I would consider the seventh principle which is the contrast phenomena.

If you would like to learn more from Dr. Chris Phelps then you can go to guidethemtoyes.com or calltrackerroi.com.

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