INSPIRATION - Google's Blind Lawyer Who Loves His Work
By Ivy Kuo, Legends Report Contributer
Jack Chen has been a product counsel serving as Google’s in-house lawyer for the past 6 years. Not only does he oversee the “quarterback of [Chrome services],” but he has been legally blind since he was 16! Below is an inspirational video about his daily commute and work routine at the Google offices and how graciously he navigates his way through a world of literal uncertainty. The positivity he exudes and his strong character ethic is extremely admirable.
As I watched this video of Mr Chen's daily commute from New Jersey to New York City, I was in awe at the hoops he had to jump through to just to get to work: navigating busy subway stations with only his cane and four senses. Despite this, he doesn’t seem to hold an ounce of resentment; he describes his daily journey to the Google office as,
“Running 10 miles before you even get to the start of the marathon.”
Embracing Challenges With Enthusiasm, Not Resistance
With degrees in computer science from Berkeley and Harvard, Mr Chen doesn’t allow his visual impairment to hinder his work productivity. In his tour of the Google office his enthusiasm for his job is evident, as he effortlessly pours cups of coffee, and finds a way to navigate digitalized spaces, without his eyesight. I was amazed at the way he casually chats about his daily work routine - he does not see that his extra effort to move around the office as a nuisance. Instead, he simply accepts his situation and refuses to pity himself.
When Mr Chen is asked what the most difficult part of being blind is, he answers;
“I don’t really have a lot of challenges. I found ways to get around most of the things that are difficult.”
He uses alternate means to overcome daily challenges, such as utilising technology that reads digital text out loud to him. What’s most fascinating to me is the way he applies the lessons he’s learned from managing his impaired vision, into his work with clients;
“I’ve also found that living my daily life has been really useful and helpful for me to counsel my clients. I’m able to help them because a lot of times, when you try to find creative solutions, you also run into roadblocks. That’s the kind of thing I’ve done my whole life.”
Mr Chen is an epitome of an everyday legend, and a prime example of the human potential in each of us. Not only has he graciously accepted his physical condition, but he doesn’t allow it to disadvantage him in a career he’s passionate about. In fact, he actively applies his unique creative skills while working with his clients, demonstrating to us all - the value of learning and applying wisdom to all aspects of our lives.
Jack Chen has greatly inspired me to feel gratitude for my own health, and to no longer take it for granted. Moreover, I hope we can all embody his positivity amidst difficult situations, his curiosity for life and constant hunger for knowledge.
How can you take inspiration from Jack Chen to face a challenge in your life?