Overcoming Fear and Staying Positive in a Dental Practice

Overcoming Fear and Staying Positive in a Dental Practice

By ADMC Member Jen Butler

Staying Positive

Fear interferes with productivity and innovation in the workplace. In dentistry, fear arises in various common situations, such as the first time a dentist performs a big procedure, deals with a difficult client, faces tension on the team, or worries about finances. Fear in a dentist causes a lack of concentration and conflicting thoughts that interfere with performance. As a consultant in the field of dentistry, I have found that positive thinking is the best approach to overcoming fear. Positive thoughts in dentists alter attitudes and emotional states to lean towards a more hopeful and encouraging direction; they counter the forces of disillusionment and lack of motivation. Positive thinking helps to heal. It restores a sense of internal wholeness, which is especially helpful to dentists who are emotionally detached from their job.

How can dentists foster positive thinking?

Draw Inspiration from Past Successes

Look back upon your previous success to find motivation and positivity. When you are unmotivated and filled with fear, reflecting on works completed and past success can help spin your line of thought in a more hopeful and positive direction. Use the building block of past success to realize that future success is possible.

Start with the Right Attitude

If you start the day with a positive attitude, it is easier to maintain a positive attitude. Starting the day in an enthusiastic mood enables you to maintain the right tone and empathy towards patients and bolsters your sense of fulfillment. The advantage of a positive attitude is that it not only helps the dentists but also spreads to the patients and the entire staff. If you smile, people smile back.

Draw Inspiration from Your Patients

Schedule patients so that you have time to interact with them before starting a planned procedure. This technique is especially helpful if you are fearful of a procedure. Building a relationship with the patient also builds your confidence.


In the midst of fear, it may seem difficult to remember past successes, find a positive attitude, and create a relationship with patients. However, the importance of positive energy cannot be overemphasized. The degree of patient, staff, and your own confidence rises drastically when everyone in the practice is positive and optimistic.

Are you having difficulty moving yourself and your staff beyond fear and lack of motivation? As a business consultant and coach for dental practices, I can help you find your positive energy and momentum.

This article was originally published on JenButlerPartners.com.