We all have had those days—or weeks—in the office when things do not go as planned. Maybe you received some negative patient feedback or your dentist was demanding. Either way, making mistakes or being reprimanded by a manager can knock your self-confidence. Here are some ideas on how to take criticism in stride, and find your self-confidence.
TAKE A STEP BACK
Try to gain some perspective on the feedback before you let anxiety take hold. Consider what you can learn from this experience, and how you can grow from it. Then, ask yourself, “Is this really that big of a deal? Am I blowing this out of proportion?” Perhaps a patient complained about your attitude, you fell behind schedule, or you missed something in the chart notes. Whatever happened, it is not the end of your career or a reason to be hard on yourself. It’s important to not take criticism personally. Really listen to what your boss is saying and focus on the lesson, then learn and grow from it.
REMEMBER WHY YOU’RE THERE
Remind yourself that the boss hired you for the job because she/he has faith in your abilities. You made a great first impression, your resume stood out above the rest, and the manager wanted you to join the team. The manager saw something in you then and still has faith in your abilities. Remember you are still an important member of the dental team.
TALK IT OUT
Sometimes all you need is a listening ear to help you feel better about the situation. Confide in a trusted co-worker, friend, or family member about the way you’re feeling. Your manager may even be able to provide insight into how to learn and grow from the misstep if you feel comfortable talking to him or her. Sometimes all it takes is an outsider’s perspective, or just unloading negative feelings to achieve peace of mind.
SQUASH THE NEGATIVITY
Give yourself a pep-talk when you begin to question your abilities. It’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole of self-doubt. Instead of giving in to the voice inside your head saying “Did I do a thorough job? I’m sure I missed something,” “I can’t handle a full schedule,” “I can’t do this.” Be kind to yourself, push those thoughts aside, and replace them with positive statements.