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.
Time for a break from all the finding your joy stuff I usually blather on about. Let’s have some fun! What would you add to the list? I’m so glad we spent a month studying Marbury v. Madison in law school. I use that case every day in my practice. We do really crap work…
Test your new career ideas by trying out a key skill or activity. Focus on how you can do some testing, rather than telling yourself all the reasons it’s too hard right now. If the first test doesn’t light your fire, it is not necessarily a sign that whatever you’re testing isn’t for you. It’s easy to confuse fear of failure with dislike of an activity at first, and that’s why you need to give something several small tests before deciding it’s not for you right now.
Once you’ve got that shiny JD, the alternative to a legal career is the road less traveled. The signposts are sometimes faint or indecipherable. The most popular maps are often inaccurate or take you to places you don’t really want to go. It helps a lot to have a tour guide. In other words, it’s easy to get stuck and founder if you’re not alert.
Networking is one of those things that most people, and particularly introverted lawyers, frankly dread. That’s why you need to network in ways that are sustainable for introverts; putting yourself in a constant high-wire act of meeting total strangers is not sustainable. So, broaden your idea of what networking is.
The key to revising your traditional legal resume to one that will get you an alternative legal career is to let go of the law firm jargon and concepts that are likely still plastered all over your current resume. Instead, latch on to the jargon and concepts that your new career values.
What stops many people from pursuing an alternative legal career is the uncertainty of it all. We can’t see where it’s going to lead, except in the most hazy of fashions. That’s simply not acceptable in our outcome-obsessed world, now is it? Even if we can accept that uncertainty, our peers often cannot. I remember…