Episode 473: Going From Burnout to Growth

dental a team podcast Jan 18, 2022

We all get burnt out at times — that’s totally normal. But it’s up to YOU to address the burnout. In this episode, Kiera and Brit give tips on how to go from low to grow.

  1. Recognize you’re burnt out

  2. Find the cause

  3. Make goals + measurements

  4. Associate with the right people

Each of us has ownership over our burnout, and the advice given by Kiera and Brit will help you confront those concerns and overcome them.

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0:00:05.8 Kiera Dent: Hey everyone, welcome to the Dental A Team podcast. I'm your host, Kiera Dent, and I had this crazy idea that maybe I could combine a doctor and a team member's perspective, because let's face it, dentistry can be a challenging profession with those two perspectives. I've been a dental assistant, treatment coordinator, scheduler, filler, office manager, regional manager, practice owner, and I have a team of traveling consultants, for we have traveled to over 165 different offices, coaching teams. Yep, we don't just understand you, we are you. Our mission is to positively impact the world of dental, and I believe that this podcast is the greatest way I can help elevate teams, grow VIP experiences, reduce stress, and create A-teams. Welcome to the Dental A Team podcast.


0:00:53.9 KD: Hello, Dental A Team listeners. This is Kiera, and I've got the one and only Britt. I think she just goes by Britt, not Brittany Stone, even though her email... Britt, what do you go by? Are you Britt or are you Brittany? Who are you?

0:01:06.2 Brittany Stone: I mean, ultimately, I am both, but most people call me Britt, and I kind of love even clients, they just pick it up 'cause they know you guys call me Britt and I'm happy, I'm all for it.

0:01:18.3 KD: Okay, alright, well, the reason I ask this is because you and I. Fun story, guys. Britt and I... People aren't gonna believe me, and I don't know if I even believe myself anymore. I say we don't see each other often, but you and I tend to see each other pretty frequently. We frequent the globe quite a lot together. So Britt and I had an office together in New York just the other week, and funny story, I ended up getting Covid and Britt had to go to the office by herself. It was supposed to be a little training and it turned into Britt you're doing. So, good news is Dental A Team, we are all pivoters. So Britt was awesome, took it on... [chuckle] But, Britt, the reason...

0:01:58.6 BS: We make it happen.

0:02:00.1 KD: Yeah, 'cause I noticed, I was on Zoom, Britt was running the meetings in person, and Britt, you were like, "Hey guys, I'm Britt." You just kept introducing yourself as Britt, so I felt like we needed to have a podcast where it would be like, "What do you prefer? Are you Britt or Brittany?" 'Cause I don't think I call you Brittany, ever, and when I do, it feels kind of odd. So I feel like you're more Britt.

0:02:19.7 BS: I know. I think you recently called me Brittany, and I'm like, "Oh, this is kind of weird."

0:02:23.7 KD: I definitely did it on the last podcast 'cause it felt awkward.

0:02:27.6 BS: And I think and we both noticed. [chuckle]

0:02:30.5 KD: Alright, so it's me and Britt today, guys. Britt is one of our awesome consultants. If you are lucky enough to have her in your practice, you definitely know that you are one of the luckiest offices. Something I love about Britt so much is she also has a hygiene perspective and she's able to bring that to our offices. She's able to ground me in a lot of ways and just give a different perspective than we've had, so... And she's also a rock star. You guys can all thank her. So anyone who gets CE, thank Britt because Britt is the reason Dental A Team is CE, or re-credentialed, so shoutout to you on that, Britt. [chuckle]

0:03:05.2 BS: Thanks, thanks. Glad it's done. Glad it's done.

0:03:10.5 KD: But, yeah, so today's topic, I wanted Britt on here a lot because I think she's good at this, and I feel like it's a super pertinent topic right now, and that is, how do we go from burnout to growth mode? Because those feel like high extremes, one extreme to the next, but I feel like a lot of people are maybe in the mindset of burnout. We've gone from Covid, then we went to 2021, which I feel just was like kicking life into high gear. We went for... I feel like it was like a movie that went into slow motion and then wicked into fast forward. We missed that middle road between the two years, and so I feel like burnout is not uncommon. I know I've felt it, I know, Britt, I'm sure you've felt it, our offices are feeling it, but it's like how do you get out of that burnout to growth mode?

0:03:56.0 KD: And so, Britt, we're just gonna kind of riff on this today. I think it's super pertinent. We've heard about it in offices, but it's like, one, I think you gotta recognize that you have hit burnout, and then it's identifying what's causing that burnout, because burnout isn't... I think it's a catch phrase, if you will, of like, "Oh, I just feel so burned out," but it's like I'm not burned out hanging out with my friends, I'm not burned out when I'm doing yoga and I'm doing things for myself. I'm burned out when I'm at work grinding all day long, and I feel exhausted at the end of the day 'cause my schedule is freaking psycho or we don't have enough team members 'cause we've lost team members, and so it's me having to drag extra weight. But for me, I really feel like one of the biggest pieces on burnout is... Like to overcome the burnout is to actually figure out what is causing this burnout to begin with. That way I can identify and fix it, which will then propel me into growth mode. But that's kind of like real easy and cliche to say. Britt, you got any thoughts on that?

0:04:55.6 BS: I think for sure recognizing it is huge, and even the earlier we can recognize that we're starting to go down that road so that we can do something about it is definitely gonna be helpful. And I agree, figuring out how I got there, 'cause I think often, often with burnout, I feel like it's because, at least for myself, I may not be doing the things for myself that I need to be, and I've just kind of gotten out of balance a little bit.

0:05:26.1 KD: It's a really good point. The things that I was doing before, where I was killing it on growth mode, for me, Britt, I'm gonna just call me out, and I know you're calling yourself out right alongside of me, like working out. I get really good on working out and being so diligent and consistent on that. I'm really good with my meditation, good with my outside dental world reading where it's just reading for myself, expanding myself, being really great with my relationships with friends, and then having work, but my pie is more equal versus my pie being all work, very minimal workout, hashtag none right now.

0:06:05.3 BS: I knew that's where you were going with that one.

0:06:10.6 KD: It's okay. Britt and I have been talking about this, we're... And Shelby actually too, I've got... I've got a trio.

0:06:15.8 BS: On the same page.

0:06:17.4 KD: A little trio going on right now, working out. But that... Is that kind of what you're meaning of like, those other pieces we've allowed slip and bringing those back in, but I guess the question is, how do you actually bring them back in 'cause you're so burnt out, you're exhausted, you don't wanna add anything in. So do you have any tips for you specifically that you've been able to find to bring that balance back into your life?

0:06:38.5 BS: I think that some of it's gonna depend on you personally and how you kind of recharge, right? Some of us can recharge in different ways, so for me, personally, I know that maybe I just need to find... Honestly, a day where I don't go anywhere. I don't have any plans, I don't go anywhere, I just give my brain a chance to relax, so I can start to think about even like, "Alright, what are the things that actually do bring me some happiness that I'll least enjoy, and how can I start to maybe plan those things out?" Have I seen friends lately? Have I seen family lately? Have I... Actually plan something fun to do outside of the house, which is why I think COVID times, we all got a little out of whack 'cause there weren't as many fun things that we could go and do. But where can I start to build some of those things back in to bring my life back into balance?

0:07:27.3 KD: I love that, I love the ideas of just giving yourself some mental breathing space too. I know for me, Tiff will say it's 'cause I'm a Taurus, but I think I'm a weird Taurus. Tiff and I are both nature bugs, Britt I know you are as well. Just loving to be outdoors. I feel like that really centers me, and as you said that, Britt, it reminded me of something that I've done... I was coached on this, in something that I'm not perfect at by any stretch, I think that there's a misnomer of trying to be perfect, and for me, I'd rather be consistent and I'd rather be optimizing my life than trying to constantly maximize and failing, like... Let me see where I can just optimize.

0:08:06.4 KD: And so when I was taught this, it was when I map out my whole week, which I've gotten a lot better at doing, I like to do it on Sundays, I like to prep for my week, believe it or not. I still to this day use a paper planner, my favorite one is Passion Planner. I've talked about it a couple of times on the podcast. It's stupid expensive, but I love it because it has from 6:00 AM until 10:30 PM with every 30-minute block, and I can see my whole week at a glance. So that's why I love the Passion Planner, but what I've found is, to your point, Britt, of adding those things in is I map my week out and then I actually look at it to see, okay, in this week, and I... The coach that taught me to do this said to have those areas of your life. So what about your workout? What about your relationships? What about your you time? What about work time? What about personal development?

0:08:57.7 KD: Like whatever the categories are you want in your life, whatever categories make you feel "balanced", 'cause I don't think that there's a food pyramid for balanced lifestyles, but she said to actually color code those parts of my life, so my relationship with Jason, me, and my favorite color's pink, so Jason gets his color, I get pink in the world, working out is green, but just all those little categories of my life and then she said in my planner, when I map out my week, actually color code so you can get highlighters and it might just be a good thing to try at the very beginning just to see how balanced is it. And again, I don't think that my pie chart has to be 25% work, 25% Kiera, 25% Jason, 25% friends. I don't think that that actually creates balance, I think it's... What creates that balance for you and prevents the burn out. But then looking at my week and, seeing some weeks I have zero pink for Kiera. There is absolutely nothing in there that I've done for myself, and so looking at that weekend saying, "Hey, what could I do for myself this week that would really just benefit me and fill my soul?" Sometimes it's getting a massage. Sometimes, like you said, Britt, it is literally taking two hours where I'm gonna take a nap in the middle of the day, and that is just my time. Other times, it's... Like I know when I've got friends coming to town, that just fuels my soul, and I love it.

0:10:18.6 KD: Hashtag, when Britt taught me to synchronize swim. Such a fun time in life. But those types of things, like, what can you do for yourself? And so to your point, Britt, I think as we make this into a tangible, I'm really big on giving tangibles... But like you said, giving yourself those pieces and then that's a good way for you to check your calendar each week to see what is my main color on the schedule. It's kind of like if we were to... Those Eaglesoft offices out there, you know if you have all rocks in the schedule, all the crowns... Eaglesoft drives me nuts that everything is color coded in different colors, I never know what's going on. I feel like the rainbow threw up on your schedule and doesn't know what's happening in there, but you guys all can read it of like, "Yeah, it's a great productive day," and I'm like, "Oh... But where's your doctor?" But looking at it, so if we think of an Eaglesoft schedule where crowns are dark blue, and then we've got fillings that are light blue... If we have an entire day of just crown seats, nobody would enjoy that day whatsoever. So you've gotta have that variety and I think the same thing can come into your life as well, and when we get maybe too much of one color in our day, in our lives, that's to me where I think a lot of burnout can happen. Britt, I talked a lot about color coordinated planners and different things that you got on that from your own angle.

0:11:38.0 BS: And I think when it comes to finding what that balance is for you, if you're starting to feel burnt out, then something's not in balance, so that's your chance to kind of take a minute, where do you feel like you're out of balance and what's gonna work the best for you and what's gonna work for the best for you this week? May not be what works the best for you a couple months down the road, but just really making sure, I think, to ultimately make sure you're taking care of yourself and doing the things that you need to to keep yourself healthy physically, mentally, relationships... All of that is super important.

0:12:13.3 KD: Are you guys sick of trying to figure it out on your own? I know I am. When I'm trying to run a business, sometimes I just think there's got to be a better way to do this, and so for me, my answer has been to find someone who's done it and does it really, really, really well. Like I'm talking the best of the best of the best. I want someone who's been in my shoes, somebody who understands what I'm going through. When I was looking for the consulting business, I found a coach who literally has run a consulting business. Well, that seems like the perfect fit.

0:12:43.1 KD: So you guys, right now, we have a few spaces open in our platinum consulting. That is in the consulting where we actually come to your practice. We help you get systems implemented. We don't just tell you what system to implement, we actually implement them with you, and for you. You guys, it is one of the best investments I've ever made is to hire a coach who understands the business I'm in, who's lived it, who's done it, and that's what we in the Dental A Team do. We literally physically fly to you. So if you're sick of trying to figure it out on your own, if you just want somebody who understands you, join our platinum. I'd love to have you. I'd love to have our consulting team come out and see you, be in your office, be with your team, and truly help you get on to the easy path of dentistry. It doesn't have to be hard. So join us in the platinum, we'd love to have you.

0:13:35.0 KD: And to that, I think it's also really important to set goals and set measurements along the way. So I'm really, really, really big on setting goals. Some people like them, some people don't. I'm like a huge advocate for it. And I used the quote... My therapist actually gave me this quote when I was in therapy, I've not forgotten, it was such a valuable one... She said, "Kiera, goals are stars to guide by not sticks to beat ourselves with." And I really loved that. So now I've shifted my perspective of like, "Okay, where do I actually wanna go?" And every year, like I'm doing a kick-off for our platinum clients for the beginning of the year, and I'm teaching them literally how I break this down.

0:14:17.3 KD: Every single year, I make goals of what I wanna do personally and professionally, and then I break it down into quarterly as well, just very simple quarterly chunks, and then from there, I assess it continually, I really do. Every quarter, I kinda look back, see am I on track, am I off track, where do I need to move these things. But I think having some goals that you want personally and professionally can also help kick that burnout because now it's like, "Okay, great. At the end of this year, I want to... " And I don't usually do, if it's coming to my... Like this year, my goal is not to lose X amount of weight or anything, it's literally to be in the best shape of my life. That is my goal for this year. Kiera Dent wants to be in the best shape of her life, and that means being able to run without having pain... I've had knee and hip pain... To be able to work out at the gym, to be able to go hiking with no pain, to be able to have lots of energy.

0:15:09.0 KD: So that includes eating well. To me it's, I wanna be at the end of the year looking back and saying, "Yes, I'm in the best shape of my life." And so now, that all of a sudden inspires me each week to look for ways to add in working out versus like, "I need to work out 'cause I'm feeling burnout." Like, no, I'm doing this 'cause there is a goal in mind, and then I'm gonna break it down quarter by quarter of things that I wanna do. So at least that's for me. Again, I'm a very growth-oriented person, I love to have goals, I love to have measurements, and for me, sometimes just even having that goal and even giving myself the space to think about where I wanna go allows me to almost kick that burnout, 'cause it puts me into a progress mindset versus a digression mindset.

0:15:52.9 BS: I think it also helps you to actually recognize the progress you've made, 'cause I think it can happen to where you're like, "Alright, I wanna be this," or "I'm gonna focus on my health," but what does that look like? And then at the end of the year like, "Well, I don't really feel like I accomplished anything." Even though you might have made some progress, you just didn't track anything or have anything that you were reaching for.

0:16:14.8 KD: Yeah, agreed. They've gotta have on that growth mode, I think it's a good point of making sure that the goals we're setting can be tracked and measured. A good example of that is in our company... And I think we're really good at setting goals... Like I pride ourselves on being good. Everything we talk about in the podcast... I've always wondered if you were to come and pull back the Wizard of Oz curtain in Dental A Team we really would be what we say we are on the podcast. I really have a hard time with people talking on podcasts or giving examples, and that's not who they are.

0:16:43.5 KD: So I've tried really, really hard. I know I've embellished from here to there. I'm sure I've got a few out there. Generally speaking, though, I really wanted it to be like, if you were to come look at our company, what we say we are on the podcast is exactly what you would see, and so I think... And, Britt, I know you would say the same, we talk about our goals, we review our goals, but we literally had a goal this year that said the company needs to be completely independent of Kiera. Like what the heck does that even mean? And I remember Tiffany asked the question of like, "What are we even aiming for? What does this mean? How do we know that we've achieved it?"

0:17:16.1 KD: And so to your point, if we're going from this burnout to growth mode, what does that growth actually look like? How is it measured? How is it tangible, so like you said, we can see that growth and that progress over the years or even months or weeks, but also it gives you... Once we identified what does it mean for the business to be independent of me, well, great, now we know we want the consultants to be able to podcast without me. We want to have other people being able to run certain meetings that I've only been able to do. It helped us to solidify what we actually needed to do, and to me, that gets me out of my burnout mode because I often feel burnout comes from feeling the overwhelmed word. It comes from feeling like it's impossible to get to that goal, or it feels impossible to get there, and sometimes it's just because we haven't solidified it or made it simple enough to track and measure to see that we're actually on the path versus feeling completely off the path.

0:18:12.7 BS: Yeah, and it's the when I feel like I'm just spinning my wheels, and for what reason, and so that's where it does help you when you track it.

0:18:20.4 KD: Yeah, exactly. So I would say for those of you feeling burnout, number one, identify where it is. For me, I remember it was a couple of months ago, I was just... When I get to burnout, that's when I just hate work, I don't wanna do it, and it's odd because I created this company, I love our clients, I love our employees. So when I get to that spot of I just don't enjoy showing up for work, that to me is when... Those are my warning signs, I would say the flashes are going off of Kiera's headed into burnout, what's going on? And so I usually will look to see what is causing my biggest stress, typically, this last one, it was because I had no white space in my world, back to what you were saying Britt of there was no place for my brain to shut off, just exhausted. Then also looking to see where am I not balanced and what does balance actually look for? Can I add in little things for myself, adding in time with relationships, adding in time for my health, adding in time for personal development, and making it to where it's fun and something I look forward to, and then also having measurable goals, so I know even where my targets are at.

0:19:21.4 KD: And then I would say giving yourself space and grace plus getting yourself around people that are growth-minded. I joined Tony Robbins platinum group on purpose, 'cause I wanted to be around people that were pushing me and growing me and were thinking bigger than I was. You better believe my growth mode pivoted real fast when I joined that group, 'cause I was like, "Oh my gosh, let me hear all the different ideas." So I would say if you're in that burnout mode, maybe check to see who you're around and could you elevate your peer group, elevate your friend group to maybe have different people around you to help inspire that growth mode as well.

0:19:55.8 BS: Agreed, who you surround yourself with definitely makes a difference, and even if it's who you spend most of your time with or a good amount of your time with can impact your... I think just mental health and how happy you are as well.

0:20:09.6 KD: Yeah, I'm really picky on the people we bring into our company, 'cause I know we'll become like each other, and I wanna make sure the people pushing us and growing us are people who I wanna be like and really wanna rub shoulders with. So I would say I also look to see who's around you, can you elevate that peer group, how could you, you can get... You can listen to podcasts, you can join coaching groups, you can join mastermind groups, you can get into workout groups at the gym, there are so many different ways to meet people that are elevated in their thinking, but make sure that they are aligned with what you wanna be and I'd say don't stick in burnout, I think burnout is a choice, I think it's real, but I think it's something that you completely have ownership over. And one of my favorite quotes is, "Are you the creator of your life, or are you the manager of your circumstances," and I think when you're creating your life, that helps prevent a lot of that burnout as well. So those are my final thoughts on that Britt, any last thoughts you wanna add to it, anything that you've found for you going from burnout to growth mode.

0:21:12.5 BS: I think that I agree that there's some choice to it, of whether I continue to fit in it and just be there, or whether I choose to do something about it, so I'd say, if you're feeling like you're in the burnout mode, choose to do something about it because life is supposed to be fun and you're supposed to enjoy it.

0:21:31.4 KD: I would agree completely. I believe if you're not having fun in life, you're doing it wrong, so find a way to have it be fun and exciting, and I'm not going to lie, guys, you've heard I've shared quite a bit of my personal life on the podcast. I have had many a times where I've been deep down, dark, low, and I think that that is a very real space to be in, and we don't take that lightly. It's something that is very real. I believe that there's a lot of mental health that's not discussed, and so I believe that burnout really is there, I also believe it's a choice, and I also think that there's a lot of places that can prevent us from getting there, if we can recognize them sooner. So reach out, don't be afraid, guys I have joined lots of coaching groups, I have had a lot of people to just be my accountability partner on it. And so if you're there, this is your life, you get to paint the colors in it. You don't get to choose every choice that happens, but you do get to choose how you respond to it. And so make that conscious decision, and if we can help in any way, by all means, we are here with open arms, no judgment, massive love for you, because sometimes you just need somebody to spin it for you. I have lots of coaches in my life, lots of people that I bounce ideas off of to help elevate me, and I know Britt does the same.

0:22:42.1 KD: So if we can help out, please, please reach out. We love to help clients, we love to be their sounding boards to give a different perspective, to get you fired up and excited for growth mode and keep you motivated even when the days are hard. So email us [email protected], and Britt, as always, I appreciate podcasting with you, I love you on our team, I love what you do for our clients, and it's always fun to hear your ideas of how you're able to go from burnout to growth, I love... I love learning from you as well.

0:23:07.7 BS: Love being here.

0:23:09.7 KD: Alright, guys, as always, thank you for being here. Thank you for listening and we'll catch you next time on the Dental A Team podcast. And that wraps it up for another episode of The Dental A Team podcast. Thank you so much for listening and we'll talk to you next time.



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