Man On The Street: Alan Tan

Age: 36
Occupation: Principle dentist and owner at Dentistry For Chickens

What’s your morning routine?

The alarm goes off at 4.30am in the morning. Most days I’ll get to a 5am F45 class, otherwise I head in to the gym for an hour. Then I get home and start preparing breakfast for the family and food for me for the day.

I work a 12-hour day most days, so the mornings can also be a productive time to do some administration for the practice. Then the kids get up approximately 7am and the chaos begins.

What advice would you give your 20 year-old self?

Take time off for yourself. I’ve been very goal-orientated my whole life, so one of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt is that you need to take time to recharge if you’re going to giving your all every day.

How do you stay motivated?

I enjoy what I do. I’m a self-professed workaholic but I wouldn’t do what I do if I didn’t enjoy it. But seeing results, for example; patients that were terrified of dental treatment that now can see me or another dentist regularly due to getting their confidence back in dentistry This is a big reason why I go to work each day.

I have awesome friends, family and colleagues that keep me grounded when it gets a bit crazy at work and a very supportive, understanding and thankfully tolerant wife.

What is the secret to success?

Loving what you do. If you can’t face going to work every day you probably shouldn’t be doing it long term.

What is the worst mistake you’ve made and how did you fix it?

Being young, foolish and thinking I was indestructible. Breaking my elbow after making a foolish decision made me realize that it takes just one event to change your life for the better or for worse. I don’t think I’m indestructible any more…

What is your advice for people to fund their dream?

Put the hours in. No one is entitled to succeed in their goals without the hard work that leads to it, and sometimes it means putting up with long hours at the beginning.

What is the best bit of advice, or quote, that resonates with you?

‘Join the 5am club. Your most valuable hours are 5am to 8am. They have the least interruptions’.