“All of our dreams can come true – if we have the courage to pursue them”
– Walt Disney
I have a confession to make to you. I am an orthodontist, not an MBA, not an attorney, and not an accountant. I do not hold undergraduate degrees in business. Why I wanted to confess this right upfront is because you will be reading a book about goals achieved in millimeters. As an orthodontist or anyone in the dental profession will tell you, we measure our success by millimeters, which is how I’ve come to look at things not only in business but also in life.
I might be exaggerating a bit about size, but millimeters while small are mighty powerful in our professional results. For example, in orthodontics, a millimeter discrepancy in the final position of a tooth could mean a less-than-perfect bite, less-than-perfect alignment, and less-than-perfect smile. Dental professionals are detail-oriented – and a millimeter is a big deal. If a single tooth still needs a millimeter of forward movement, it can look like a foot or yard out of place. A millimeter opening in a filling will allow bacteria to enter the tooth and can cause further damage. Too many millimeters of “pocket” depth around a tooth could compromise its long term. So in my profession, millimeters are very important in terms of our professional results.
I use the metaphor of millimeters to share with you, the reader how small steps; changes and actions can make a BIG difference in the results you try to achieve. Too many people take the all-or-nothing approach aka “cold turkey” to achieve a goal or promise that they have made. My premise is to take a different approach – the millimeter method to use to make a change, take action and get results. Instead of waking up tomorrow and saying, “I am going to lose 10 pounds this week,” why not try the millimeter approach? For example, I say, “I am going to lose one pound a week for 10 weeks using this diet plan versus 50 pounds in a year.”
In my coaching business, I often coach my dentist clients that instead of building out the Taj Mahal of dental offices and going into stressful debt burdens, why not start off with a very nice, clean, modern office? Why buy new when you can invest in perfectly acceptable used equipment and furniture? I advise them to limit their debt to the most minimal amount possible, which is how I define a millimeter approach versus an all-out I-am-going-for-it or I-am-going-for-broke attitude.
In this book, I am going to go against mainstream gurus who talk about taking massive action and big leaps to get you where you want to go. The reality is that few people actually ever take this approach. Why? I believe there are two major reasons. The first one is fear: fear of failure; fear of change; fear of not accomplishing what you set out to do; fear of ridicule; fear of what your friends and family will say; and fear of not being good enough to succeed.
The second reason and one that is probably not as obvious is that most people inherently want to take an easier path or approach to success. Let me explain. Everyone wants to have success whether it is personal, business or professional, and they set goals to achieve these successes. However, most people would rather take the easiest road possible and expend the least amount of energy to get to these goals. (I know for some of you reading this, you might be thinking I am not very motivating.)
Let’s talk reality for a moment and not sugarcoat it. Big leaps toward any goal can seem monumental and difficult – and can discourage you from even trying. But what if there was a way you could succeed at X, Y or Z in easy bite-size pieces that seem manageable? And instead of trying to make huge changes in your lifestyle, business or professional life, you could instead make smaller “millimeter” changes and still achieve your goals, would you like to know more? Well, this book is for you, because that is what I am going to share and propose you do.
The “millimeter” approach to achieving your goals can be done a millimeter at a time. Just let me show you how it’s done!
– Dr. Donna Galante