The Female Principal blog series part 3: The Quest

The Quest
Recognise that the reason you are doing this is that you are alive when you are on a quest.
It’s the way you are wired – it’s in your DNA – and it’s incurable.
There is a problem with “quest” people.
As soon as they have completed the latest challenge, they get bored very quickly.
The quest might be:

  • to purchase the first practice
  • to open a squat
  • to buy-in to an existing practice
  • to relocate
  • to win an award
  • to complete a post-graduate qualification
  • to hit a certain financial target

On the quest – you are on fire.
No matter how many hours, how many arguments, how many tears – the quest is the quest – and it must be completed.
Energy appears from hitherto untapped reservoirs, resilience is strong, determination is absolute.
Nothing will stop you – nothing does.
Then – you cut the ribbon, you open the doors, you win the award, you qualify, you cross the finish line.
There is a short period of celebration, followed by the slowly accumulating feelings of emptiness.
Is that it?
Now that I have my practice, badge, trophy – is that it?
You see the challenge for the “questers” is that when we are not on a quest we are lost.
Until the next quest comes along.
Male questers have a very clever way of dealing with this.
We screw up the thing that we have created – so that we can get busy repairing it – the quest becomes the recovery.
Fortunately (and yet ominously), few women in business are that stupid and have that sense of “protecting the nest” that prevents them from going through regular phases of either self-harm or creative destruction.
The solution here is to always have the next quest ready and waiting in the wings.
DO NOT kid yourself into thinking that when you have purchased, opened, moved, won – that you will be happy to settle down into years of consolidation and growth.
It’s not going to happen. Your mind will see that as stagnation and the gremlins will begin to eat away at your self-confidence.
So what is your next quest going to be?
Make a plan NOW for the next 3 years.
*An excerpt from The Female Principal manuscript by Chris Barrow – to be published as an ebook later in 2014


Published by

Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.