Ready When You Are
Think back for a moment to when you were in dental school, or in college. If you’re married with kids, take a moment to reflect on life when you were single and childless. Seems almost like a different lifetime, doesn’t it? You were a different person, with completely different priorities.
So why is that when we look at others, we tend to think that what we see is what they have always been and what they always will be? I think of this every time I hear a dentist pigeonhole a patient: “He’ll only do what insurance covers.” “She’s just not interested in esthetic options.” But what about:
- The folks who have made the last college payment for the kids and are ready to spend a little on themselves
- The 21-year-old college kid who becomes the 25-year-old internet entrepreneur
- The 50-year-old factory worker who becomes the 55-year-old small business owner
- The recently divorced person who is now ready for some personal “re-invention”
And of course there are countless other examples. If you think about it, I’m sure you’ll find that many of your best patients are ones who (at least at one time) you didn’t think would choose to afford it. But things change. People change. That’s something to keep in mind before you “write off” that patient who isn’t ready to commit to ideal care. The point is for you to be ready when the patient is ready—and that means you have to be thinking in terms of ideal all the time, at every visit. Because you just never know when their circumstances will take a turn, and your worlds will align.