being in an environment that pushes you way past your default personality traits can make you hostilejudgmental, anxious, brittle and impatient. You can find the job that aligns really well with your purpose and gives your life meaning, but if the daily environment doesn’t match your personality needs, you’ll end up stressed and possibly confused about why.
Exploring stuff simply because you’re interested in it is how you get to know yourself and honor that inner voice. Defaulting to the choice that allows you to check off a punch list item on the road to success—and only because it helps guarantee “success”—guarantees only that you will lose touch with yourself a little bit more.
There are so many of you out there who are utterly convinced that staying in law is a path of safety and certainty, and that you would be wildly irresponsibleto leave. The fact that staying in law is contributing to your chronic health problems, and triggering or worsening your depression and anxiety, are simply risks that you ignore as blithely as getting into your car daily.
But guess what? The paths we think are clear and logical often don’t work out, either. We just delude ourselves that they always will, if only we can squeeze ourselves inside someone else’s cramped, soul-killing box.
If your dream job and life seem like a million miles from where you are, your next job probably won’t be your dream job. But with some dreaming and then some thinking, you can make that next job one of the bridges that gives you more of what you need to get you there in the end.
Because of this herd mentality, many new graduates end up in jobs that are a horrible fit for them. They “won”––but in fact may lose years of their lives, lose respect for themselves, or even lose themselves in the job––because of one rash decision. Even if you skirted the herd, and stuck to your guns about finding a job that was a good fit for you, you may now be questioning how well you knew yourself or what you wanted. So in an industry where there are more lawyers than traditional jobs, how do you find your personality in your career?
When your response to a problem is to solve it with an instant, money solution, your creative muscles atrophy. You start to think you aren’t creative, and aren’t a decent problem-solver. You start to believe that money has to have your back, because you yourself are not up to the task. That’s how you end up stuck in a high-paying, soul-sucking law job.