Highly sensitive people (HSPs) perceive much higher levels of sensory input than the average person. This innate trait can make lawyering a difficult or miserable experience, unless you work in a highly supportive, collegial culture. Most legal environments are not that. If you suspect you’re an HSP lawyer, changing some aspect of your job is likely necessary.
What right do we former lawyers have to be bitter and unhappy? I mean, when at least half of attorneys surveyed say they would not choose law again, obviously nothing is wrong with the structure and culture of the profession. It’s—‘DOH!— our bad personal choice to go to law school that is to blame.
Even though depression and anxiety can paralyze you right now, don’t give up on your wild and precious self. Reach out for help and accountability.
I cannot keep track of, well, anything lately. Even though I don’t feel acutely stressed, my brain is shrieking (and performing) otherwise. This time of pandemic is somehow blowing all my brain circuits. I am mentally and emotionally wiped out. How about you?
When no one knows how anything will turn out, you can feel freer to follow your inner wisdom without a cloud of guilt and doubt hanging over you. Your inner wisdom has always been more likely to be the right answer for you; now more than ever, you can free yourself from justifying the dreams borne of that inner wisdom.
Connect with whatever inspires you–the Indigo Girls, or something else altogether—and use that to dream big, and act big.
The legal industry as a whole must fix its fetish with perfection. In the end, calling out colleagues on their weaponized perfectionism benefits everyone, especially lawyers who are different from the norm. It doesn’t require money to address. You don’t need anyone’s permission. It’s a step you can take within the next week.
People often mistake their thoughts and beliefs as actual truths. Yet it’s often not so. Our beliefs are not necessarily the gospel from on high, let alone the entire truth. But so many lawyers fervently believe that work can’t be fun, that they can’t make money doing something they love, or that they have no marketable skills aside from law.
Whatever your career stage, it’s not too late to design your life. How do you want it to look? Discerning that answer is crucial to designing a satisfying life & career. Or, go ahead and shove the question aside, and let the forces around you shape your life instead.
World and national events. have heightened our anxiety, for sure. But the bigger problem may be that our work tools dictate a frenzied mental pace–one that far outstrips our actual ability to deal with that pace. All those little islands of downtime that we used to have–waiting rooms, lines, the commute–are now filled with chatter and productivity. Without downtime, our brains get stressed, and we get anxious.
The toxicity of law culture runs so deep that most firms score at least 10 out of 13 factors that lead to employee burnout. What about yours?