Law school lowers an irremovable, painful perspective upon each student and we’re trapped in that world forever. Lawyers are taught to see everything that’s wrong – every inconsistency – every source of liability, even if we’re just trying to watch a movie, have a conversation with our spouse, or invite our kids’ friends to a backyard pool party.
Wendy Witt, CEO behind Million Dollar Attorney
Unhappiness and health issues reign supreme within the legal community. Lawyers suffer suicide, depression, anxiety, alcoholism, drug addiction, divorce, and the like at rates sometimes more than double the general population. For example, in 2016, the ABA found that 33% of practicing lawyers have a hazardous drinking problem (compared to 6.8% of the general population per the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism 2014 study). There’s more. They also found that 28% of practicing lawyers suffer depression and 19% suffer from anxiety (Journal of Addiction Medicine, 2016). This certainly isn’t our best life.
Why does this happen? It’s that law school induced perspective of seeing all that’s wrong – plus a whole lot more. Lawyers may feel trapped in a life we don’t want, often suffocating under $100,000+ in school debt. We suffer the fear of malpractice and social media complaints. We deal with harassing opposing counsel and difficult clients, who are going through a hard time and who rely on us to make their lives okay again. We work too many hours, rarely seeing our young children awake. We don’t know how to run a business (because most of us didn’t learn that in law school) so we’re not making enough money, yet feel stuck in a gig that brings no joy. We’re professionals who don’t want to show vulnerability and feel the need to be perfect, stifled by the fear of failure. We’re in a professional culture that promotes drinking, even in work settings.
None of this is okay. If the purpose of life is to be happy – and I truly believe it is – our profession is severely underachieving. But, it doesn’t have to be this way so my ultimate mission is to tilt the legal universe toward wellness and I do that through my Operation Best Life System.
Operation Best Life is all about helping attorneys design the life they love and then working backwards to create the law firm that serves and supports that life – not the other way around which typically means life gets whatever’s left and that’s never much for most of us.
When a lawyer will move through fear and roadblocks to do the work, both personal development and strategy implementation, the results are life-changing – truly goosebumps worthy. The results show in their happiness metric, the blossoming of children and relationships, improved sleep and overall health, the power to have more impact, and more money.
Think about this – Which lawyer would you rather hire – The one being crushed under stress, lack of sleep, and addiction or the one operating under their Operation Best Life?
I help lawyers who want to create a million-dollar law firm and here’s why. There’s magic at that benchmark. Lawyers have said to me, “I can’t work harder; I can’t do more” and they’re right; they can’t. But, what’s cool about the million-dollar mark is that’s the tipping point – that’s when the lawyer can do the work they love and they have the money, which is a tool, to hire others who love to do the work they don’t like.
The million-dollar mark is also when attorneys can work much less than at lower levels where they’re doing everything or most everything; they can cherry pick the clients and cases they want. These rock stars have moved through fear, developed their ability to see opportunities, and implemented. They feel in control and understand that they have the power to truly create the life they love. This transformation changes everything and this is the Making of a Million Dollar Attorney®.
A former trusts and estates attorney, Wendy Witt, JD serves as a Master Law Firm Business Strategist and is the founder of Million Dollar Attorney®, a private consulting firm that partners with solo and small firm attorneys to build the million-dollar law firm that gives them the life they love via her Operation Best Life System.
You can find out more at MillionDollarAttorney.com.
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Or, Contact: Wendy Witt and Million Dollar Attorney: MillionDollarAttorney.com