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Rarely are there calls for the legal industry to hold itself accountable for creating alarming rates of depression/substance abuse/suicide in the profession. Despite the fact that lawyering is a stressful job done while surrounded by many dysfunctional, unpleasant people who actively try to thwart you—colleagues and opposing counsel alike. Somehow, we are supposed to survive and thrive in a toxic hellscape at work.
Lawyers may deserve the “asshole” label at times, but not because we are all mean, nasty people. Yes, there are many lawyers who are. But many more lawyers act poorly because they’ve never learned differently.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t ever argue the correctness of your position, because I am not an idiot. But choosing the right time and the right place for that argument is where we lawyers often stumble. Far too many attorneys have their “I’m right” dial set permanently at 11, one of the reasons lawyers’ interpersonal relationships suffer.
Your brain needs time to mull things over and roam freely in odd places. Lacking that kind of freedom, your brain (and therefore you) gets frenzied and spastic, going through lots of motions but accomplishing little.
The thing that makes you a writer is pretty simple: You write words. There’s no need to pick apart whether your words are good, or what’s your motivation to write, or whether you can make a living as a writer. If you want to write, and you write words, you are a writer.
You want to know why lawyers are such raging assholes? It’s that a huge majority of them are quite below-average when it comes to emotional intelligence. Lawyers are, in fact, a bunch of emotional fuckwits. They go through their days competing to the death, or avoiding like the plague.