So its been a long while since I’ve posted anything. I just got back from working on a project on rural Kenya, helping the Ministry of Health to evaluate their new community health worker program and provide recommendations on how to improve it. I’ve doing public health in the field before, but never with this kind of academic rigor.
1. As much as I don’t want to do community-level research as a career, it is really rewarding to be able to present your info the the public and see their reaction.
2. I need to be more like Nick Hu when I’m abroad. Engage myself more in the culture, be charismatic, try new things, etc etc. I did that a lot on this trip, but I could do more.
3. Its really important to have natives on your side when you’re doing research in a foreign country. They ALWAYS know the language and landscape better than you, and they can get you out of sticky situations where your well-being is in danger.
4. Non-Americans are so much more compassionate in general and less xenophobic. At least, that was my experience.
5. Living and working with the same people gets really rough. People start getting really snarky and that can be a tough situation to deal with. Guess that why everyone says don’t shit where you eat.
6. Sometimes life is a stubborn little bitch. You just have to deal with it the best you can, even if you’re thousands of miles away. Life was never meant to be fair, get over it and keep going.
7. Life is all about experiences: professionally, personally, emotionally, socially, etc. So be cognizant of that as you go through. Look to take on more responsibility and adventure.
8. I’m actually really excited to (hopefully) find a job in global health. Being able to do this work and actually have fun with it has been a really awesome experience over the past few years, looking forward to more of it in the “real world”.
9. Anyone who tells you not to get caught up in small things is full of it. You should definitely get caught up in details, that’s what separates people at the top. But don’t let the small issues mess up your own mentality or personal life.
10. People are rarely who they seem to be. Not that I’m going to spend every minute of my life trying to get to know everyone. But its always interesting to have preconceived notions and watch them shatter.
11. Make sure you stay friends with people who are generally invested in watching you succeed. When you feel like you are falling with nothing to cling onto, they’ll be there for you. When you are trying to make life decisions, they’ll be there for you. When you need to celebrate, they’ll be there for you. Get rid of people who don’t care to actually know you, keep around the ones who make an effort.
12. “No matter how long the night is, the day is sure to come.” —African proverb