Are Your Stubborn Ways Limiting Your Leadership Success? Star Wars–Day 3

18 Dec Are Your Stubborn Ways Limiting Your Leadership Success? Star Wars–Day 3


Be willing to unlearn what you have learned. My yoga instructors encourage this leadership behavior: “Accept things as they are,” they often say–especially when someone is pushing his or her body too hard. It is a common theme for competitive types. Competition pushes us to be more and do more, so this opposite way of thinking takes some getting used to. Believing that the world brings you what you need when you need it is a large part of the yoga mind training. This is called manifesting—although it is much more complex than I am explaining. We are able to manifest what we need in our lives when we are grounded and tap into the energy force that surrounds all of us. In Star Wars episode V, The Empire Strikes Back, Yoda continues to train Luke Skywalker to be a Jedi. He says to Luke, “Always with you it cannot be done. Only different in your mind. You must unlearn what you have learned.” For years, we have been taught to think through our problems and resist our feelings in certain ways. For example, our Western culture often expects girls, and especially boys, to avoid crying to hide any sign of fear or weakness. For boys, we inadvertently train their egos more so than their overall humanistic needs. This not showing of emotion spills over into every day life, and somehow our children learn to hide their emotions–even when not in a competitive situation. According to Micheal Thompson and Dan Kindlon, two of the country’s top child psychologists, and authors of the book Raising Cain, our nation is filled with boys who, “are hurting–sad, afraid, angry, and silent.”

Boys (and girls) can become less intuitive. They do not “feel” things. They sense less. This type of mind training permeates into our science-based dental world. We end up not being able to believe anything that is not validated by a randomized, seven-year, double blind study. For dentists, and possibly other science-based professionals, it’s perplexing at the least, and depressing at the most, to feel boxed in by many unproven concepts. Worse, when something gets invalidated, like the way fluoride becomes integrated into teeth (or doesn’t) or the way bacteria causes endocarditis (or doesn’t), it’s troubling to try and hold onto something that is as evasive as treating chronic pain. Our control is lost, and we start to squirm with discomfort. For me, creating a balance between sensing things and processing things intellectually gives me the ultimate strength and often leads me to better decision-making. Both ways are needed and valuable. It’s not either/or for me. It’s both.

When we learn to unlearn our past notions, we see things differently. It often takes an outsider to help this leadership process occur. We cannot see ourselves in the ways others can. We only know what we only know.


Dr. Lisa Knowles helps dentists identify their leadership blind spots, and then helps them unlearn these inhibiting behaviors. Sign up for her blog posts to receive regular communication and ideas to help your practice thrive!  Sign up area is in the upper right corner. 


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Can’t get enough of the light saber sounds and thrills? Here is my son lighting up the room: Light Saber Display

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