I had an appointment at a chinese acupuncture place at 8am. It came recommended by a friend while I was searching for a local chinese doctor. I am a firm believer for chinese medicine as I personally benefitted from it for over 2 decades. Chinese medicine is particularly effective in addressing chronic issues and it works to unblock the chi and flow that cause the problem. Yet, it’s very hard if not impossible to find a good chinese doctor. So when I heard about this place, I was intrigued. It’s working for my friend so it worths a try. 45 min ride got me there. The place is not fancy but clean. It seems to be part of a church as they call the staff their sisters. The doctor that attended me is indeed chinese. She performed the usual check-up of chinese medicine, pulse, tongue, and ask about the symptoms. My main reason to go there is my dry eyes and slow digestive system. 10 min later, I had needles in my head, around my eyes, tummy, and leg. On top of some needles, she placed moxi, which is what I believe what true chinese doctors do. I was asked to relax and take a nap for 30 min.
It was like meditation and all kind of thoughts came to visit me. The one that I entertained was what makes a good job. Conventional wisdom would say, success, money, power would be the metric. To me, fulfilment of doing something good for the humanity would be a better and more sustainable metric. I started to enumerate good jobs using this criteria, teachers, doctors/nurses came to mind immediately. And then I had hard time to continue. What other jobs help people? either inspire them to do good or relief their pain. I realised that I don’t know many. Then I widened the circle a bit and decided that chefs are also important as they make people happy. What about economists like me? I feel good about my job but my contribution to help others is indirect, if lucky. I have the illusion that I’m helping the poor people through advising governments to take actions. But at the end, the ultimate outcome of my impact is rather limited. There are just so many factors that go in between, politics to begin with, flawed institutions to follow, and the short sightedness of policymakers and people. Sigh…. not a very inspiring thought experiment. Yet, it made me value doctors and teachers more. 🙂
Once I got to office, close to 11am. I started working but it was not a productive day when I don’t start early. By 2:30pm, I left the office again for a dentist appointment. While the dentist was trying to fix my cavity, I was actively chatting with a policymaker trying to convince him to act, to help poor people, while knowing how hard it is. Yet, my morning thought kept me going and inspired me to be more bold, vocal, if I ever want to have an impact on people’s life.
I am not sure if I’ve convinced him but I felt good for trying. At least, I haven’t given up. 😉