• Law School

    Don’t let law school take your joy!

    Around this time each year I share this post. But a lot of time has passed since the original and I thought an update was warranted. For law students, as you try to enjoy your time off, I know that for many there will be a little voice in your head reminding you about your grades. And reminding you about a tough question and how you’re not sure about your answer. Or you’ll agonize over the question you didn’t get to because of time… What if your grades are bad? What if you don’t grade on to journal? What if you can’t apply to the job you want? It’s nerve-wracking!…

  • Legal Practice

    Easing Back to the Office

    I know the idea of going back to the office strikes fear in a lot of us but it is likely many will be easing back into a hybrid or a new routine where you are back in the office full time (I don’t wish this on you, unless you really want it!). Seeing as I’ve been back since July (yes, five days a week!), I wanted to share some things that made the transition easier for me. Because there is a shift in terms of time, attention, and energy that comes with being away from home 9-5 and it’s nice to be prepared for it. First, working from home…

  • Work Life Balance

    Proud of You! Recognizing Your Accomplishments During Difficult Times

    We talk a lot about stress and frustrating aspects about this work or school because it’s important to dissect that and figure out solutions. We’ve also all gone through two really tough years that includes loss in different areas of life. I know it’s easy to end this year by just steeling ourselves for whatever’s to come but I think that would be a slight disservice to ourselves. Instead, I want us to wind down the year recognizing all the great things we accomplished. Ok, caveat, I’m the last person to lean into posi vibes only–I literally wince when we have to do calming techniques or centering exercises during workshops…

  • Legal Practice,  Work Life Balance

    Feeling the Pressure: How to Respond to Stress

    We talk about stress, burn out, vicarious trauma, whatever you want to call it A LOT. For me, it’s important to discuss what stress and trauma look like in this profession because it impacts not just how much we enjoy the day to day practice but ignoring it  can result in real negative physical/mental effects. This has been at the forefront of my mind lately because of a recent incident at work. It was an unusually hectic week and it culminated with an in an incident that caused a huge adrenaline rush (in a bad way). In the heat of the moment, I felt fine and in control. But a…

  • Legal Practice

    Whose Gate are You Keeping?

    A few days ago I posted about the quandary I often feel in discussing professional norms and how to abide by them while understanding that those norms are rooted in classism, sexism, and racism. As always, my goal with teaching “how tos” is not to push for assimilation but rather to uncover these unspoken rules so people can decide which, if any, to follow. And how one abides by those norms is wholly dependent on your own career goals, current needs, and other obligations. Ok, but say you quickly learn and adapt to these standards, what does that mean? It means that while you’ve figured out the way to advance…

  • Law School

    What to do with a Gap Year

    For those planning to attend law school, you may hear about the importance of a gap year. A gap year, generally speaking, is a year+ long break between undergrad and law school. I like to encourage them even though I went straight through. What is the goal of a gap year? It can be anything you want it to be, really. You can spend the time getting your money right so you can afford to apply for law school; you can spend the time getting more information about the legal profession/meeting lawyers so you can be sure the law is for you; and/or you can spend the time strengthening your…

  • Law School

    Law Student Don’ts: Mistakes to Avoid as a Law Student

    I’ve spoken often about how weird law school is and how common culture shock can be—and that’s because not only is the Law a foreign concept but the process of law school itself is also really weird. And it can be easy to stumble, especially when you’re new or when you’re not event sure of what are the expectations. In fact, that’s how I feel I went through law school—one stumble after the next and thankfully I never fell flat on face enough to not get back up, but it doesn’t and shouldn’t have to be that difficult. You shouldn’t feel like you’re fumbling in the dark to figure out…

  • Legal Practice

    What If I Hate Practicing?

    So lately I’ve been thinking how it’s probably not helpful that I’m always like BEING A LAWYER IS THE BEST THING EVAR! Because I get that not everyone feels that way and in encouraging folks to enter this field I don’t want to make ppl feel like there’s something wrong with them if they don’t enjoy practicing. Yes, it’s totally normal to actually not enjoy being a lawyer. I mean maybe that’s not a huge surprise when you look at the data that shows how badly our profession suffers from depression and addiction but only pointing to that can feel extreme. There can be moments in your career where you…

  • Legal Practice

    Who is the Imposter? Not You.

    I recently read a new article from Harvard Business Review discussing how imposter syndrome is often blamed for our self doubt and lack of growth in our career, but that ignores outside factors (i.e. work culture) that actually influences your growth, more than your own confidence in abilities. Essentially, the report lays out that everyone—everyone—experiences doubt when they are starting something new, but most work environments are structured so that it tends to help one group of workers over others. Meaning, men may feel self-doubt but are given access to mentors and sponsors, both formally and informally, to help them grow and feel more secure in their work. So as…

  • Legal Practice

    Elephant in the Room: Sexism in the Court Room

    If you have any interest in the criminal justice system or being a litigator then please take a moment to read a report called “Toughen up buttercup vs. TimesUp: initial findings of the ABA women in criminal justice Task Force.” It’s a report on the task force findings after having discussing with different women in the criminal justice system and in summary–things aren’t great.   I really urge folks to take some time to read it or the summaries so you can get a sense of what it’s like to be a women in the criminal justice system. There are issues with overt sexism from coworkers, judges, and opposing counsel;…