If you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Emily Lloyd Arrington, you sure are missing out. I have the honor to call her a dear friend but I also admire so much about her. Since we are friends, I am going to call her Emily through this post, even though she is a DOCTOR. I am not going to lie (I am sure most of you can attest to the fact), we all don’t like going to the dentist. Emily has made those visits comfortable and has the best staff to care for each of her valued patients.
Emily is hilarious, probably one of the funniest women I have ever met. She has the ability to turn a somber mood into something light-hearted and fun. She doesn’t take herself too seriously, and this quality is what makes her the BEST dentist and friend anyone could ask for. Obviously, she is beautiful, but glows even brighter from the inside. Her heart of gold will always make you feel safe. I’m not sure if she has ever met a stranger… she has a way with people and I mentally take notes while I am around her. She shows grace to anyone she encounters which comes from her faith-driven life. ONE VERY important thing you should also know about her, she has an Amazon Prime addiction (much like myself).
I could go through all her credentials, education, awards… but what impresses me the most is that she’s a wife, a mother of two precious babies and a business owner. Not just anyone can handle a life of balance like hers, it’s something to talk about. She’s a woman to watch. Are there awards for women that are out there doing it ALL? And doing it WELL? There should be.
When I decided to feature Emily Arrington and asked, she was hesitant. One thing about Emily is she’s as humble as they come, she’s not one to brag or probably has ever self-evaluated herself when it comes to her success. I really wanted to share a piece of her with all of you, to inspire you, to encourage you. Not to mention, she has the most adorable kids and the coolest husband!
I always have been a believer in the power of positivity.
I sat down with her on a beautiful sunny morning right before we both met some of our friends for lunch. As I walked into her office I got a little nervous. I wanted to ask the right questions so that all of you really understood why I admire her so much. I decided to start the conversation with an ice breaker, all I could think about was the gum in my mouth, hence the gum question. We both settled very quickly into the interview. I wish I could explain the energy towards the end of the conversation, make sure to read to the bottom. Emily put so many things into perspective between her feelings for her husband and wishes for her children. She hit a grand slam…
Is gum okay?
Sugar-free. There’s some gum with xylitol that promotes saliva production which is great to prevent dry-mouth.
Biggest issue as a dentist? A pet peeve of a dentist?
That people think that candy and cookies are so terrible when in more reality it is liquid sugar, especially if it’s carbonated. It changes the PH balance in your mouth. Cokes are worse than being able to chew sugary foods.
What would be the best business advice to the younger you?
To follow and trust your instincts. As a younger me I questioned myself a lot more and turmoiled over decisions when I should have just trusted my instincts from the start.
What is your biggest struggle as a mother?
Guilt – for missing things that other moms don’t. But I think we all have guilt in one way or another. Personally, I am a better mom because I work. It helps me keep a better image of me as a person outside of motherhood and I like that example for my kids. But losing some of those moments, I appreciate my time more with them.
No matter the occasion, what is your go-to outfit?
Black, anything black. Our scrubs at work are black because of me! I’m comfortable in anything black and it’s just easy to dress up with accessories! Even one of my favorite pieces in my closet is a black maxi-dress.
What has been the most challenging moment in your career so far?
The move I made to Oklahoma City. I wanted a practice like my dad had but he practiced in a different time when things were not as insurance-driven. It was like the good ol’ days when people trusted their dentist, and you saw entire families grow up and their kids grow up. That’s what I wanted. Working for corporate big dentistry was not going to be like any of that. And then Pampa just happened, it fit. The change of setting was hard to leave in OKC along with friends and family but the practice part was a pretty easy transition. And then surprisingly everything else fell into place.
What is your go-to fashion label?
Before kids it was Prada and now it feels like Gap. My big splurges are shoes, bags, and sunglasses since those things never need to change size. I’ve never really splurged on clothing.
Who is your fashion icon?
Audrey Hepburn, she’s very classic yet so fashionable. Things she wore so long ago will totally work in today’s world. I liked her outside of style as well, she was just flawless in so many different ways.
Women to Watch: Dr. Emily Lloyd Arrington
Who is your business icon?
I don’t have just one particular icon. When I was an undergrad my dad would set me up with different dentists over the summers for a few weeks at a time. That really shaped a lot of my clinical and business knowledge. There’s more than one way to skin a cat. Dentistry is an art like that. So, there’s a group of 6 dentists that I hold in high regard. These people have helped me become the dentist I am today. Obviously, my dad is one of those, he’s awesome.
What is your best advice on how to handle a business and marriage cohesively?
Involving your spouse in your business decisions. Lake is my first sounding board. We are so different so it’s great to get his perspective on things. I can be such a perfectionist and he is so easy-going that he helps me see the bigger pictures and not get bogged down in the little details that aren’t important.
How would you encourage women currently or about to enter the workforce?
Take failures and mistakes with stride because it’s inevitable. I always had a hard time taking criticism, my mom will even attest to that. I’m my own biggest critic, I take it really hard. As I’ve gotten older I’m learning it will allow me to grow and understand that no one is perfect. Try it again, you’ll get it right.
Who is your biggest influence when you make tough decisions?
From above, via prayer, being in the right place and having the right priorities. Other than that, I have this whole army of a support system. It’s my mom, it’s my dad, my husband, friends, and staff. So, it’s really a village. I have an awesome support system that allows me to do what I do. I couldn’t do it alone and would not be able to do it without all of these people.
In your eyes, what is your biggest achievement so far in life?
It’s my little family. We aren’t perfect by any means, but we love each other like crazy and have a lot of fun. They’re my number one pride.
How do you maintain that positive “Emily” attitude?
I always have been a believer in the power of positivity. Fake it until you make it. If you THINK the best outcome then you can make it happen. Then at the same time, I am realistic and have a plan in place for the worst-case scenario.
What are your biggest wishes for your children?
I pray and hope that they will love and be loved. And another important thing to me is I hope they will get good solid educations and have many opportunities in life.
What is your favorite thing about your husband?
How do you want to improve yourself?
I want to SLOW DOWN, simplify and just keep enjoying the ride. I am going to look up, and we’ll be 80 and I will have missed it.
You’re one of the coolest, Dr. Emily Lloyd Arrington and have continued success heading your way. Your full-circle life is inspiring to us all. God has brought you the best because you are one of the best. Thanks for being such a good sport.
After reading this, I hope everyone is inspired to support other women. Although we all make it look easy, it’s nice to hear a “good job,” or, “keep killing it,” just like my friend Emily.