Leaving the Law

Walking Into a Better Law Life

Especially for lawyers, many of us love, love, love to be in our heads and not so much in our bodies. Exercise is usually one of the first things to go when the work demands really ratchet up. Lawyers also tend to bring their perfectionistic tendencies into their views on exercise. Shocking, right? If they can’t do a full hour of a complete and demanding workout, they won’t do one at all. This is one of they myriad ways that lawyers are brittle and not resilient. The all-or-nothing attitude leads to important but not urgent stuff simply not getting done.

Recovering Lawyer, Having Fun: Oooh, Shiny!!

It is simply pure joy to dwell for 45 minutes in possibilities while on a fun date with yourself. Planning for projects goes on in the deep recesses of your brain for quite a while afterwards, and will at some point spring forth. That’s what these dates do—they get your mental wheels turning, and give your brain something fun and stimulating to chew on, rather than the spit and vinegar your inner critic would choke you and your happiness on.

No Creativity = Lawyer Depression

If your work doesn’t a hefty dose of inherent meaning for you, that lack can be the trigger for depression, rather than the symptom of it. Particularly when you ignore your creative side, routine legal work will never have enough meaning to combat unhappiness or depression. You just can’t get the ratio of creative: routine/boring/tedious work high enough.

6 Quick Steps To a More Balanced Lawyer Life

The good news—actually, great news—is that you can start very small to make transformational changes in your life. As long as you keep at it, you will make the big changes in your life eventually. Think of Apollo 13—they only needed to change their trajectory in cold, dark space by a few degrees, and by doing so, they saved their lives. Finding work-life balance, or a whole new career, can be just like that.