10 Things I wish I knew before I became an attorney

I don’t talk about the details of my job or what I do very often on the blog … except to say that it consumes my bloody life. But the truth is, since I could talk and vocalize my thoughts (and let’s be honest I’ve been a talkative and chatty one from birth … I probably walked out the womb chatting), I told my parents that I wanted to become an attorney. My mum’s brother is an attorney in the UK and meeting him as a child just solidified that. It was done. That was to be my career for life.

And I did it.

And I love it.

But … there are things that I wish they told me before I became an attorney, or things I wish I knew before taking that oath … so that I didn’t have any Law & Order inspired unrealistic expectations of life.

On being an attorney

1.You will think you are smart until you get that one case/file that makes you feel stupid. Really stupid.

2. The job isn’t always as glamorous as people think and countless of boring hours are spent reading and analyzing things. Many attorneys never even see a courtroom.

3. People (friends, family and the like) will ask you for legal advice and expect you to give it to them  … for free. I dont even mind this so much except …

4. … they expect you to know everything about the law at the tip of a hat. You are the walking goddamn law. Know it. Except … I don’t know it off the top of my head folks. Calm the hell down.  they all look at me like …

5. You will be surrounded by know it alls. ALL. DAY. LONG. Better known as “co-workers” or “colleagues”. These know it alls can become your saving grace in an instant so bear with them. They might also be your friends. Heck … you will be considered a know it all too.

6. “The law is a jealous mistress” which basically translates to … law demands your time. Your work day never really ends and you probably take your work home with you. And your significant other isn’t always going to like your mistress.

7. Sleep is a luxury. Master the cat nap. Or you’ll look like this:

8. You probably won’t make a lot of money straight out of law school … or get a job.

9. You will learn that things/cases are not always black and white and there are several shades of grey. That case you swore you would never touch … won’t look so bad

10. Some days you will love your job and other days you will hate it … but you probably will never regret becoming an attorney.

Totally random rant from a sometimes disgruntled attorney.

Oh and before I forget. As we are on the topic of attorneys, my friend and fellow attorney/writer/book club/ so much in common person, Kari, wrote a short story and shared it on her blog yesterday. I think you should check it out!

Have a great Tuesday guys!!

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