Thinking of leaving the law?
Here are some stories that I commonly hear from Lawyers. I’ve said most of these things myself.
If even a handful of these scenarios apply to you (or to people you are associating with), it might be time to ask yourself why you’re putting up with these conditions, and what you can do to change things.
In Your Work Life:
- You’ve found a person in position of authority to be ridiculously immature. You may have said to yourself: “I’m better than that.”
- You might have asked: “How is it possible, after all of the work I’ve done to get here, to be both bored out of my mind and totally stressed out at the same time?”
- You’re in some kind of conflict every day, either with opposing lawyers, partners, staff, spouse, children, or yourself. It seems like you are looking at the negative all of the time, but you lack the power and capacity to see something different.
- You want to do something that is more consistent with your highest motivations and values.
- You’re tired of throwing yourself into a job that you don’t care that much about, just because you need the money. More and more days you feel like walking out and leaving everything, but that seems immature, and besides, you don’t really know where to go. If you did walk out, you’re not sure about what exactly you would do, or how you would make a living at something you enjoy doing. And the bottom line is this: you’re really not a dropout. You’re willing to work hard—even give your whole life to your work when the work is right.
- You’re totally uninterested in poverty, living off someone else, getting into more debt, or living without the means to do what you want to do. Having stable and sustainable financial independence is a box you’d like to check so you can move on to other more important things.
- You may have actually left your job, only to find that you have just stepped into a whole host of other problems and that you are now confronting a massive new learning curve.
In Your Values:
- You want a life based on your values instead of always serving someone else’s agenda.
- You’re tired of your mind being for sale, and would love to focus on something that you’re really interested in.
- You want to live in a way that is sustainable over the long term.
- You have a sense that you are here to do some great thing, and that if you had the power, capacity, money and time you could achieve something significant—something that would leave this world a better place.
- Who exactly started this idea that suffering is such a great thing? What happened to Beauty, Play and Fun?
- It would be great to be a part of a high functioning team that’s doing something everyone is proud of.
- You are tired of fuzzy thinking, and of being unclear. But you know something is not quite right with the people that are so clear about everything—their rants are tiresome to listen to, and their certainty comes at the price of seeing only a tiny slice of the whole picture.
- You are willing to learn, but there is so much conflicting information out there that you don’t know who to listen to.
- You have an impulse to make the world better, but don’t know exactly how to proceed. You have the intuition that there is a little piece of the world that you can make better, and if you could actually do that thing you are called to do, it would make a big impact.
In your Relationships:
- You don’t want to hang out with losers, and you are tired of needy people. It seems like wherever you go, you are giving more than you are getting in return. Everyone is just thinking about themselves all of the time.
- You’re tired of hearing yourself complain, and are ready to put together a ‘community of the adequate’ where everyone is really helping each other—sharing skills, ideas and practices that have some traction.
- You want to open your heart, but have good reasons based on past experience for keeping it closed.
- The people who are closest to you don’t really see the ‘real you’, the person inside and the jewel you have to offer.
- It would be great to have somebody who’s on your side for a change.
- The people around you seem to be standing still and sleepwalking. You are the only one in the whole damn place that’s growing, moving, and has a clue.
- You’re tired of being told what to think. You are ready to learn the skills of thinking for yourself.
In your Body:
- There are habits– still active– that you know are holding you back, and you just can’t seem to get rid of them.
- One or more of these things are happening to you on a daily basis:
- Spontaneous anger and violent images are in your mind that seem to come from nowhere.
- You feel afraid when you do the basic tasks of your job.
- There is an acidic feeling in your body.
- You have a sense that your heart is ten sizes too small.
- You have the feeling of being burnt out on a molecular level.
- You feel sexually unsatisfied all of the time, and nothing that you do changes this.
- You feel that the things that used give you pleasure are just not that fun anymore.
- You find yourself using drugs, alcohol or porn and you would rather not be doing this.
- You feeling numb and don’t give a shit.
- You wish that you had never gotten into this.
The struggles you are going through are the same ones that I’ve been through in my own career. It’s my belief, (indeed my conviction), that what is happening to you are the symptoms of a new world that is trying to come into being, through you, but is not yet fully here. What is happening to you is in fact a call to personal evolution— pushing you toward a life at the next level. I’m here to help you answer the phone that’s now ringing. The truth is that it will continue to ring more loudly until you either answer the call or you get to the unfortunate point where you can’t hear the call anymore.
If you are contemplating an exit, you are about to make (or fail to make) one of the most important decisions of your life. It’s essential that you don’t walk off a cliff when you walk out the door. I encourage you to apply for a time slot with me before you get up and quit. You want this to be a power move, not a capitulation. You want to do this with both your head and your heart. This needs to lead to someplace better.