Female Lawyers: What Happened to Your Big Dreams?

by Lakeshia Ekeigwe in Blog

DatePosted on March 20, 2017 at 10:16 AM
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In my process of working with new clients, I always ask them to describe "The Big Dream" they have for their life.

When I asked the same of Erica, a 33-year-old lawyer in Los Angeles, there was an unusually long pause. Through her tears, Erica stated she actually does not have a big dream for her life. The only thing she knows for sure is she does not want to continue the lifestyle she has now. 

Erica works long and exhausting 10-hour days doing legal work beneath her intellect and skill set. She is playing a much smaller game professionally than she should. There is no room for growth in her current firm and she is completely out of alignment with her value and brilliance. 

What are your big dreams? (Photo credit: Blake Lisk.) Erica hired me to help her get clear about what she really, really wants in her life professionally and personally.  At the moment, she honestly has no idea what that is.

Though she fears something is wrong with her, I reassured Erica that her experience is actually quite common. Because lawyers spend so many years of their life working toward the Big Dream of becoming a lawyer (perhaps even a Super Lawyer), the journey can culminate in unintentionally suspending other Big Dreams they had for their life. 

A few years into their legal career, many find themselves overworked, overtired and overwhelmed. They busily perform voluminous tasks, relying on adrenaline and caffeine to get through the day.  Layer onto that the need to effectively manage their professional reputation and expanding network including firm partners, clients and even opposing counsel, and it can all become too much.

The result? They become numb. 

  • Numb to the pain of working 10-hour days with no end in sight;
  • Numb to the pain of managing an unrealistic caseload, fearing a critical detail or date will slip through the cracks; or
  • Numb to the pain of feeling like they never have time for themselves and for fun anymore.

And, just like Erica . . .

  • Numb to the other big dreams they had for their life because they are simply too busy to devote time to think about them.

How about you? Are you numb to your big dreams? 

If so, answering the following questions can help you begin to correct that. 

  • What is the overall big dream you have for your life?
  • What do you really, really want professionally and personally for your life?
  • What support do you need in your life to make your big dreams come true?
  • Take the time to write out your answers in as much detail as possible. Why? Because this is the beginning of reconnecting to the big dreams you have for your life.

I have helped many women lawyers reconnect to the big dreams they had for their life as you will see in the video below. It would be my pleasure to help you too. 

Seek clarity in your life goals.  (Photo credit: Kalen Emsley)

Is there a question I can answer for you? Send me a private message on LinkedIn or email me at lakeshia@coachingattorneys.com.

This blog was first published in Lexis Nexis, and is reproduced with the kind permission of Lakeshia.
 
About the Author

Lakeshia Ekeigwe

Lakeshia's motto is, "I coach women lawyers to create lives they LOVE.

Based in the US, Lakeshia is certified as both a Life Coach and separately, a Mediator.  In addition, The Asian-Pacific American Legal Center have recognised her skills in Leadership Development, and Lakeshia is a long time member of Mensa.

Throughout her career spanning nearly 30 years, Lakeshia has had the privilege of working with and coaching lawyers in North America and around the world. Her work particularly focuses on female attorneys and helping them in both their career and life, through one-on-one consultations and webinars.  

To enquire about Lakeshia's coaching services, please email: lakeshia@coachingattorneys.com. In addition, you can find out more about Lakeshia on her website, www.lifeschoolforlawyers.com, and on LinkedIn

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