“Values Clarification”

Build your relationships first….then your dentistry. ~ Bob Barkley

“Values Clarification”

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“Values clarification” has become a common buzzphrase in dentistry today, particularly with regard to patients and their treatment decisions. And all too often, values clarification has become code for “We know what is best and if they do not choose it, then they don’t belong here.”

Pure judgmentalism.

And the implication is that only WE are the knowers and keepers of proper values, and that everyone else must rise up in agreement, is a pretty ignorant and arrogant point-of-view when it comes right down to it.

In reality, values clarification isn’t about our patients choosing what we want for them, and it isn’t even about choosing only the best; it’s about making fully informed choices in real time referenced against other issues and demands going on in that person’s life.

It can take five minutes.

Or it can take five years.

And those choices may or may not be in alignment with our practice’s values and mission.

And that is ok.

The more important issue is: Can we help this person in a way that does not violate OUR values? Can we lead them to a better place by helping them to see things differently?

Maybe. Maybe not.

Regardless, attempting to do so first takes clarity on our part – What is our true Purpose? – well before this type of situation arises.

Values…Mission…Purpose… Strategies…and ultimately choices.

Both practice and patients have work and growth to do if the agenda is to move forward toward more optimal health and healing.

Our work is essential.

Their work is elective 80% of time – and often a lifestyle choice.

But both influence outcome.

Paul A Henny DDS

Thought Experiments LLC, ©2017

Read more at www.codiscovery.com


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