Can focusing on just ONE aspect of your life or practice truly enhance your overall fulfillment and success? Join me as I delve into a fascinating conversation with my return guest Dr. Avi Patel, an expert in the concept of singular focus. Avi eloquently unpacks the transformative power of honing your energy on one dimension of your life or practice. From personal anecdotes of bettering his marriage through therapy to using this single-minded approach in his dental practice, Avi provides a fresh perspective on achieving unparalleled results through the art of simplification.
As we explore this captivating topic further, Avi demystifies the age-old conundrum of juggling multiple goals. His advice? Shift the lens from defining a myriad of large objectives to establishing non-negotiable standards. By laser-focusing on mastering one skill at a time and leveraging consultants or mentors who've tread the same path, we can optimize our efforts and enhance our personal and professional lives. Avi shares his current focus which involves expanding his scope beyond the clutches of conventional dentistry and into the intriguing realm of content creation in the dental industry.
What You'll Learn in This Episode:
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Michael: Hey Avi. So talk to us. What's one piece of advice you can give us this Monday morning?
Avi: So I, my piece of advice would be to kind of simplify, I. Everything you're doing and focus on one thing. And I think a good place to start is with yourself. So, and then even with yourself, right? There's different aspects.
There's your mental self, your physical self, your emotional self. And I think if you first focus on your mental self and you do what you can to get that in order and get that into a place where. You have more control. Uh, I'm not talking about mind control, but something, something close to that. But if you, if you focus on your mental self, everything from that point I believe flows.
So, um, for example, myself, about two and a half years ago, I started doing therapy. I was doing it because I wanted to improve. Um. My relationship with my wife. Mm-Hmm. And I just wanted to be a better person. I wanted to be able to support her better, but then also myself, just be better. I think that was like the goal.
Mm-Hmm. And what I noticed from that point on was I started creating these habits because my focus was on improving. Essentially my mental health or myself. I started creating a morning routine. And so that morning routine was journaling, meditating, stretching. That then led to me being more organized, more focused during the day, uh, less stressed.
so that's kind of how it went into the business way of how it helped me in life. But then physically, um, I got into the best shape of my life. I started being more intentional about what I was eating, what I was kinda spending my time on in terms of working out movement, stuff like that.
And so just by starting on focusing on one thing by myself or on my mental health rather, all this stuff flowed. And I think you can translate this to other aspects of your life, your business, and everything. Because whenever you're focusing on too many things, right, and I think especially this time of year in January, everyone's got a million goals going on.
Probably by the time this thing airs, most people won't have any of their resolutions continuing. But, ' cause I made the same mistake, right? And everyone hears it. Mm-Hmm. And I think I, I felt. So much relief when I looked at the multiple goals that I wanted to basically achieve this year personally and business-wise.
And, uh, I felt so good when I eliminated like 90% of them because. I think people get confused on like, having a goal and then actually having something to do, right? So when you have too many goals, then there's so many things to do to achieve all of those goals. You're never gonna get it done. Mm-Hmm.
And I kinda just went back to my roots of like, when was there a time in my life where I was growing rapidly, feeling good about myself, achieving a lot of success, and it's back when I was just doing, or focusing rather on like one thing. and so. I kind of remembered that and then I went back to it. Uh, simplified the morning routine again, these days to we're not trying to do 10 things before I start.
It's more so just keeping it very simple, very efficient, because what happens is when you start getting those wins, those wins start to stack, and then next thing you know, when you look at it, you know, a year in review, you've achieved so much more just because you were focusing on one thing at a time and kind of chipping away at it.
Michael: Gotcha, man. So right now you're kind of mentioning or you're letting us know that have one thing to focus on. Mm-Hmm. so in a specific aspect, we have to have one thing to focus on or like just in general, like, I want a better life,
Avi: I would say. So if you are someone who is trying to, like, if you feel lost and you actually don't have a sense of direction or whatnot.
Yes, only one thing because what's gonna happen is you're gonna pour, you know you're gonna pour more resources, more time into that one thing, your one big thing, and then from that other things will flow. Right. So if you wanna have a better love life, if you are spending a lot of your free time, you know, focusing on your business, focusing on your health, and like having all these diets working out and all that stuff, and then you're then trying to find time to like do things that would help your love life, you are, it's gonna take you longer to achieve that.
Where is, if you say okay. The priority for right now is my love life. That doesn't mean don't do anything for the rest of your, you know, the other aspects of your life. Yeah. But that should be the thing. That should be the main thing. And then once you have that, you, I. We'll find that when, if that is truly what you want to accomplish and like improve your happiness, and there's almost gonna be like a spillover effect, right?
Because we're human beings, we're dynamic. It's things are not just, you know, in solitude, but when you're able to focus on one thing, you're able to see, um. More results in that area. And then from that there will be an overflow. Because if you feel more fulfilled in your love life, you are gonna probably have higher energy levels.
When you have higher energy levels, you're going to be able to probably do more things, whether it's in your business or for your own health. but it all flows from that one thing where if you're trying to take your limited resource, which is energy, and then spread it out all over the place, a lot of things are just not gonna really move.
Michael: Could I ask this this year? Like what is it? You're, the thing you're focusing on.
Avi: So it's, right now it is, I'm doing it kind of in, in chapters or phases. So we're expecting our first kid in two months. Oh, nice. Okay. Yeah. So I know that's gonna be a huge change.
Um, yeah, so basically I was like, cool, well, since life is gonna look different after that, what do, what do I need to do now to be in a place to where I can, 'cause my big thing is all about optionality. I love having optionality. I love, you know, not having to be limited by things. And so the biggest thing that I hear from parents is, you know, the biggest thing that.
They get a a, there's a big crunch in time and your energy because now you are kind of giving to this human being. and, and you, you also, and everyone also says it's the most rewarding thing and it's, they always wish they had more time when their kid was younger and they could be there. So I'm like, cool.
I need to simplify. Other things in my life to create that space so that way when the baby is here, I can receive that. So for me, from a business standpoint, I have, or I'm trying to currently simplify all the processes in the business. So right now, um. My business is the online ClearLiner Education Program.
and a big arm of that is supporting the doctors in the program, but then also creating content on social media to provide free value for people. So I am working on simplifying the content creation part and also simplifying, um. The program itself, so that way it provides the most value for doctors in it.
but then also doesn't take up, an extraordinary amount of my time to deliver that support and that value. Gotcha. Okay.
Michael: So this, are you only doing now the online Uh, course, yeah. Or are you also working at a practice still?
Avi: Nope. So I, I stepped away from clinical dentistry back in September. I was doing it full-time and then slowly went down to part-time, and then with the growth of the program and I.
Content creation, social media and all that. I decided to go all in on it because it's just, it's the passion of mine and it's, I feel like it's my calling to help innovate and, um, help move the industry forward And, mm-Hmm. I feel like a quote that kind of stuck with me, or I don't know if it was a quote, but basically someone told me it's like you're either working in an industry or you're working on an industry.
Mm-Hmm. And it's hard to work on an industry when a lot of your time is kind of. While you're working in it, right? Mm-Hmm. I think there's kind of like a balance. So I'm kind of using this chapter in my career to kind of step away from the chair and, and dedicate more time and resources into ways that I can help kind of work on the industry.
Michael: Yeah. Okay. Man. I like that though. I like that. Um, part of simplifying goals because I feel like goals is like a, sometimes like a shiny, fast, cool word, right? Like, Hey man, I wanna have these goals when it's more, um. Non-negotiable standards. Right? That's what it is. Like I wanna have a non-negotiable standard.
This is it. And then I gotta reverse engineering on how to make it happen. And it's easier to do that if you have one, right? Mm-Hmm. One specific one. Boom. Did it next. Right? But if you have all these big, shiny goals and you're like, man, I wanna lose a ton of weight, and you don't know how to do it kind of thing, right?
Avi: Correct. Correct. And even just like. Relating it to dentists, right? Like if you've got a practice and you, you have a goal if you want to increase the revenue, right? Mm-Hmm. Where then it's, everyone always tells you, okay, well cool, you pick a number, then you reverse engineer it. How are you gonna get there?
Um, from my personal experience, when it came to just like leveling up as a clinician, I found that when I was trying to learn how to do multiple procedures clinically at once, like when I wanted to become a better clinician, I wasn't like. Immersing myself in it, so I wasn't actually able to get as good as I wanted to.
The example here is when I started with like implants and aligners, I pretty much learned them both at the same time. and so I was splitting my time between it. Implants. It was a little bit longer for me to kind of get going just because it is surgery and it just, you know, it's very, I mean, it's surgery, so it's, it's, it's pretty crazy.
Mm-Hmm. Yeah. Um, but then with aligners I also just started to see, um, more success with it. And then I slowly started to like, immerse myself in that. And so when I was focusing on that one procedure, it wasn't just about moving teeth. It's how do you talk to the patient? How do you get the team on board?
How do you schedule them? What do you do? So I was able to like work through all that by being focused. Where if I was trying to like iron out implants, learn it, implement it, and do aligners and like, you know. Do other procedures and, and work with the team and all that, it would be too much. And I know a lot of dentists probably feel that way, but I think the answer is, is like until you're like proficient in something, you should pick like one skill, whether it's business right, or clinical, and focus on that for the year to grow.
You will know when you get to a point where you can kind of now choose a different area to focus on. So that's why it's like. I think a lot of dentists, right? Stress comes into play. There's always a lot of hats to wear. but I think kind of taking the pressure off yourself by just wanting to focus on one thing, knowing that other people are going to tell you, oh, you need to look at the KPIs.
You need to look at this. You need to look at that. Yes, you do. But what you have to do in the beginning of anything new is focus on one thing. Get good at it and then move on to the next Mm-Hmm. Gotcha.
Michael: So then how does that kind of play a role in, for example, software? Right? They're like, Hey, all these features and everything like that, and you're gonna be able to look at your dashboard and your analytics and then you're like, cool.
'cause that contributes to the goal that I wanna make more collections. I wanna make a million dollars this this year, right? Like I wanna be Mm-Hmm. A million dollar in collections this year. And then you look at it. I feel like there's too many features of everything. You know what I mean? To just be like, uh oh, we'll focus on this one thing.
'cause then like, what if your new patients drop 'cause of the time, or you know what I mean? And all this other stuff. How do we, I guess, keep our blinders
Avi: on? So I would say the best thing to do in that situation is talk to someone who's done it before. Right? Talk to the, there's a bunch of dentists, coaches, consultants, people out there who already know what these like successful practices look like.
Talk to them, ask them, Hey, if you were to start over again, or if you had to go back, what is one area that you would focus on for 90 days? What is one KPI metric that you would focus on that you feel like has the highest leverage? Right. When you say that, now you're able to lock in for 90 days, you're able to see that metric.
And the thing, what's gonna happen is once you go down that rabbit hole, you're gonna find all these other things along the way. So it's not that other things are gonna drop off, you're just, you're shooting your shot. To get better at one KPI, but then when you're doing that, your brain will start to problem solve for ways to improve that KPI.
And when you're doing that, you're gonna touch other parts of your practice. Does that make sense? Yeah, that makes
Michael: a lot of sense. I like that question. What's the one thing you, you know what I mean? Like for, for you looking back, right? Starting out? Yeah. Because I think you told me one time we in one, a previous episode, and I'm gonna put a link to it in the show.
It's below, but. You were looking to do practice ownership, right? But then you're like, uh, I don't know. Or kind of thing, right. Or an acquisition, I wanna say
Avi: no. I don't know if I went that route. I think it was more my, my story kind of high levels. I was always an associate, but I'd worked in a bunch of practices and so it was like I was looking at okay, like what can practice ownership give me that I don't currently have?
Mm-Hmm. And also like. Is it worth for me to go down that route with all the resources, time and everything like that? And I think, I don't have a knock on practice ownership. I think it's great if you're, you know, doing it the right way. But for me, this route of going into like education and like uplifting other doctors to learn this procedure was like the bigger kind of pull for me in terms of my career story.
Michael: looking back. What's one metric you focus on for 90 days? If you had to start over,
Avi: uh, as a dentist wanting to like do aligners or just as like a dentist in general,
Michael: as a dentist wanting to do aligners, like what you're doing, education. Going down that route. I
Avi: would, yeah, if I knew, if I started back and knew nothing, I would get with somebody that knows how to do it.
Pick their brain to know what cases are easy to treat, what should you not do, right? And then, um, how to get patients to do it. I would focus on those three strategies. And then the actual, like metric, I would hold myself accountable to the point where every week I would start tracking how many patients did I talk to about it, and how many patients said yes.
Like very simple. And then. I guess over time I would see like how many patients on average am I talking to a week? How many you're saying? Yes. And then from there, try to figure out, okay, why aren't they saying yes or how can we get more patients to say yes, or how can I talk to more patients, you know?
Mm-Hmm. Like that's how I would do it, but how many people I talk to and how many people said yes would probably be the two metrics I'd focus on.
Michael: Nice. Okay. Awesome. I mean, thank you so much for being with us on this Monday morning episode. If anybody had any questions or concerns, where can they reach
Avi: out to you?
Uh, Instagram is the easiest. My handle is doctor.avi and uh, yeah, just shoot me a DM and I'd be happy to chat.
Michael: Awesome. So that's gonna be in the show notes below. And Avi, thank you for being with me on this Monday morning episode.
Avi: Thanks Michael.