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Personal Wellbeing

The Power of Vulnerability

As highly-trained, knowledgeable professionals, dentists have a reputation for maintaining high standards and a strong sense of authority within their practice. And while this approach has served the profession well in many ways, it can force us to hide behind a veil of what we want to portray, instead of giving us the courage to be who we really are.

Dr. Sally Safa is a Periodontist from Toronto who focuses on mindfulness for dental practitioners. In this revealing conversation with Dr. John O’Keefe, Director of Knowledge Networks CDA, Dr. Safa asks the question: what would happen if we were to show up to work as who we really are?

“By shifting our thinking and showing our strength through vulnerability, people will respect us more for who we are. True leadership and courage will come out.”

Dr. Safa cites recent studies that demonstrate the power of vulnerability. She explains that when a person presents themselves as vulnerable, although they may feel a sense of weakness, other people see that vulnerability as a sign of strength and courage.

She identifies some simple steps dentists can take to get more comfortable with vulnerability in their work practice and suggests that a little more vulnerability in educators could lead to enhanced outcomes in dental education.

We hope you find the conversation useful. We welcome your thoughts, questions and/or suggestions about this post and other topics. Leave a comment in the box below or send us your feedback by email.

Until next time!
CDA Oasis Team


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