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Like a Bartender
Sometimes I feel more like a bartender than an acupuncturist.
A bartender has their regulars. I do too.
A good bartender knows their customers’ preferences. I know who among my patients hates ear needles, or loves the point between the eyebrows, or always flinches when I needle the top of their foot, or probably will want two blankets.
A bartender never stops moving during a shift. Same.
A bartender has to wake up drunk people who have passed out on the bar. I have to wake up relaxed people who have blissed out in a chair.
When a customer comes in and pours their heart out, the bartender listens, reflects back, and offers the comfort of a cold beer or a shot of whiskey. I offer needles.
Years ago I realized my success as an acupuncturist was in no small part because I act more like a bartender than a doctor. It’s more comfortable for me this way—acting like a doctor felt inauthentic, like wearing an ill-fitting white lab coat. Now I’m just me, Alexa, your acupuncturist. I enjoy my work a lot more and I get better results.
It makes me wonder how many people out there in their working life are trying to play a role they aren’t suited for. Do you need to shed your ill-fitting white lab coat?
Love and gratitude,