Rx on an Airplane
[originally published in KCN, June 2013]
“Fear lives in our beliefs.”
That’s what Dr. David Jackson communicated to an assembly of chiropractors — of which I was one — in Seattle several months back. He went on to say that fear keeps us from telling others what we know we need to tell them because we’re more afraid of what they might say versus what they might not say. When it comes to sharing chiropractic, he’s more fearful of not telling people than he is at telling them. He admitted, though, it hadn’t always been that way for him. But as he began to witness more and more people falling ill and dying, he became too afraid of the results of staying silent.
To illustrate his point, he told us about an encounter he had on the airplane as he was flying up to our meeting. He explained that he had settled in his chair and was very occupied multitasking between his iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Pro. Nevertheless, he could sense his seatmate periodically peering into his “mobile office” space. With Dr. Jackson’s company name, Epic Practice, emblazoned across his screen, it was obvious he was a chiropractor. And glancing over at her work space, he immediately surmised she worked for a drug company.
Silence was finally broken when she asked what he was on his way to do.
Dr. Jackson, replied enthusiastically that he was headed to Seattle to “light up a bunch of chiropractors.”
“Chiropractors, huh?” she replied, as she began posturing herself as if preparing for battle.
Dr. Jackson, then questioned her with a friendly, playful tone as to what she was going to do. It was then that her posture became even more defensive as she revealed herself as a pharmaceutical representative on the way to a two-day training.
Sensing the prickliness of her response, Dr. Jackson tactfully — and without apology — took control of the situation.
“That’s awesome!” he said. “You must be really good at what you do! My goal as a chiropractor, though, is to make it so you’ll have the opportunity in the future to choose a different profession. If I do my job right you won’t have to do what you do anymore because there will no longer be a market for it!”
“I desire,” he continued, “to see people not get sick. And you desire to help sick people get well. I just don’t want them to get sick in the first place. So we’re not really against each other. I just have an approach that come before yours does.”
It was obvious his response not only defused her, but blind-sided her. Dumbstruck she conceded it made sense and that no one had ever put it that way before.
He then went on to tell her all about chiropractic and how it stands on the fundamental foundation that the body is self-healing and self-regulating; and that it can do that job magnificently as long as a there is a proper power supply, absent of interference, between the brain and the body.
By the end of the two hour flight, this once defensive pharmaceutical rep now wanted to get checked by a chiropractor herself and was eagerly inquiring if he knew one in her hometown. To which Dr. Jackson said, “Why yes I do.” And before they had landed (thanks to text messaging) she had an appointment — all because he was too afraid of not telling her.
Dr. Thomas R. Lamar is a chiropractor at Anchor Chiropractic in the Health Services Center and fearlessly hosts the Internet radio program SpinalColumnRadio.com. Lamar can be reached at (360) 297-8111.