Oral Health Group

2020 Pandemic: Adversity and the Silver Linings

December 21, 2020
by Lisa Philp, Chief Visionary Officer of TGNA

CONGRATULATIONS! If you’re reading this article, it means you are one of the lucky ones who responded, persevered and continue to survive through the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. 2020 will forever be the year of COVID – the year that changed how we see, hear, think and feel. It disrupted life as we knew it with work, education, shopping, worship, exercise, eating, entertainment, holidays and events. We have lived it! Now what?

Do we wallow in the adversity, and doom and gloom, or start the new year with silver lining lessons for recovery and rebuilding?


Here are just a few silver-lining takeaways from 2020 to keep in mind as we begin a new year.

Global disruptions, whether man-made or natural, connect us all despite differences and distance.

There is kindness in humanity, even in darkness. We witnessed people shopping locally, restaurants donating food to first responders, volunteers bringing groceries to the elderly, dental auxiliary sewing gowns during shutdown, drive-by birthday celebrations and dentistry sharing desperately needed PPE.

Dentistry is now an essential service of health care. It was not forced to shut down in second wave because of the importance it plays in the overall health and wellness.

The dental office is safe and low risk. There were no major instances of virus spread or disease transmission with the standards of IPAC, COVID screenings, staff training, militant sterilization, PPE and air filtration.

Leadership is the common thread in every successful recovery dental story. Today, the practices thriving and rebuilding to be pandemic-proof are ones with leaders who were proactive, remained calm and maximized their isolation time. They learned and contributed to their communities. In addition to staying connected to their teams, experts, coaches and resources, these leaders are seeing the rewards in their rebuild phase.

People are adaptive and adjust. They can handle extraordinary change to routines by finding creative ways to retool to meet their needs.

The dentist-hygiene relationship and partnership is more critical than ever before. Dentists and hygienists with respect and common agreement of safety are doing well, regardless of the conflicting science and politics of their regulatory colleges.

Perseverance is fueled by intention and daily focus. We need to plan our time for what is the most important. Ending each day with a measurement and reflection on the outcome of wins, progress and challenges can dictate energy for the next day.

Life is precious. Gratitude for the small things will increase happiness and play an important role in feelings of loneliness and social bonding. Be grateful for our health, friends, jobs and homes with food in the fridge to feed our families.

The pandemic has caused us much adversity, disruption, loss and challenges. However, it has also provided us with silver linings of opportunity to change our perceptions, shift our mindsets and reset, reflect and reenergize to be more efficient. Rebuilding is to focus on long-term planning that helps us to come back stronger.

About the Author

Lisa Philp is the Chief Visionary Officer of TGNA – Transitions Group North America. Lisa is committed to being an eternal student in the areas of personal growth, leadership, change management, human capital development, adult learning, advanced training techniques and communication skills. She may be contacted at www.tgnapracticemanagement.com or info@tgnadental.com

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