Here we are starting off a new year. Sadly, it feels like more of the same. The pandemic is still raging as a new variant has taken off. That means all the talk is on boosters, restrictions on public gatherings and shut downs! Hopefully, we will not see the same increase in hospitalizations as early reports suggest Omicron is less severe than the Delta variant was.
Regardless, it is still one more level of stress to add to what we have experienced over the last 2 years. From full lockdowns to PPE shortages, rising supply costs and questions on appropriate fallow time, dentistry has had a lot to endure. YOU have had a lot to endure!
And that is without even touching on the biggest issue…staff shortages. Finding a warm body for any position in many offices is practically impossible! The hygiene shortage has resulted in many patients being unable to schedule an appointment for months.
Of course, with labour shortages comes much higher salaries and even hiring bonuses! The cost of keeping our teams intact has increased dramatically.
Add on tenuous supply chains…you just have to ask how much longer can all this continue?
Sadly, this is not a question we can answer. We simply have no control over any of these matters. Nothing we can do as individuals will have an impact on how these various issues play out.
We need to remain on top of these issues so that we can, hopefully, find the best way to react to them as they evolve. But we cannot change them. We cannot wish them away. We have no control over what will come.
It is that lack of control that can be the biggest source of stress for many. Sometimes, the best we can do to deal with that stress is find ways to invest both our money and our time in ourselves.
I am not talking about investing in the latest continuing education or professional development course, though that can certainly add a lot of value! I am talking about investing in your wellbeing! I am talking about truly investing in YOU!
The two years of this pandemic have been stressful on everyone…employees and business owners alike. The fact that we still have no end in sight is piling on even more stress! Mental health has been taking a beating during this time. Unfortunately, mental health is one of the last aspects of our health many of us pay attention to.
We want to believe we are strong. We want to believe we can handle things no matter what comes. We want to believe nothing can get us down!
But there are times we just need a break…and more than the “break” that comes from the holiday season. A real break! One that allows you to recharge your batteries and perhaps see things from a fresh perspective. One that helps you cope with being a professional and a practice owner (or an associate) during this challenging period.
I will be back throughout the year to offer some advice on best practices for the business side of your dental practice. I hope you will find that advice beneficial. However, I honestly believe that this will be the best advice I will offer you all year!
Investing in your mental health needs to be a priority! You will be hard-pressed to enjoy personal or professional success if your mental health is suffering.
YOU are one of the primary assets of your practice. YOU are one of the primary assets of your family. YOU are your own primary asset. Your success, however you choose to define it, begins and ends with YOU.
YOU will always be your best investment!
About the Author
Shawn Peers is the President of DentalPeers. DentalPeers is one of Canada’s oldest, continuous operating buying groups exclusively for dentists.