Challenges: do you face them or flee?

I read a fun quote on Facebook a few days ago that has stuck with me.

“A strong person looks at a challenge dead in the eye and gives it a wink”.

This is a powerful response to challenges. We often see a challenge coming, turn on our heel, and walk briskly in the opposite direction.

There are numerous challenges that come up in dental practices that normally have teams responding with resistance or avoidance.

  • Telephoning an unhappy patient.
  • Having a difficult discussion with a team member.
  • Receiving a team member’s surprise resignation.
  • Vital equipment breakdown.
  • Facing a full and chaotic appointment schedule.

Looking a challenge dead in the eye and giving it a wink says “bring it on. I am ready!” (Even if you don’t feel ready.) It shifts you away from the unhelpful feelings of lack of confidence, resistance, avoidance, and fear.

Resistance impedes your ability to deal with challenges. You start from a disempowered state and then because you are closed down, you fail to see possible solutions. You also fail to see the opportunity that challenges offer your personal growth and development. Resistance sucks your energy and leads you away from pride in your performance and behaviour.

Looking at a challenge in the eye and giving it a wink emboldens you. It opens you up to the situation and you become more creative in your management of it. This powerful mindset also teaches you that you can rely upon and trust yourself no matter what challenges lie in your future.

If you find that your initial response to a challenge is to flee, try standing firm instead, looking that challenge dead in the eye and giving it a confident and playful wink.


Julie Parker was a dental nurse and receptionist for many years before becoming the first non-dentist to own a practice in Australia in 2003. After 10 very successful years, Julie now shares her wisdom and knowledge to other practice owners to facilitate their path to success. Charles Kovess practiced law successfully for 20 years before becoming a motivational speaker and transformation coach, bringing out the unique and extraordinary capacities of individuals, by accessing and harnessing their passion.