GPSolo Magazine - July/August 2006

From the Editor
Do Something and Get Rich

By jennifer j. rose

Chair-elect John Macy, who not incidentally served on GPSolo’s Editorial Board practically since the invention of moveable type, has exhorted everyone to “Do Something.” His call to action isn’t simply limited to getting out there and doing good works for the profession and the community, but even for yourself. The GPSolo Editorial Board and I join Macy in this call to action.

It’s easy to dream and put off until a week from Tuesday, particularly when we’re wrapped up in the everyday drill of getting the work out, serving our clients, keeping the alligators at bay, staying reasonably abreast of new developments in the law, and hoping that there’ll be enough in the till at the end of the month to pay bills. Each one of you has the capacity to get out there and Do Something, because you’d still be in junior high school today if you hadn’t made the move out of your parents’ house, taken the LSAT, and somewhere along the line, passed the bar exam. Now’s no time to sit back and tread the hamster wheel, just because you’re “there.” It’s time to break out of the mold and do something different. Remember how the new school year always was a time for resolutions to do something better than you did the year before? Now’s the time to make those resolutions once again and make them happen.

All it takes is getting out of your chair and taking a single step. Do it twice in a row, and it becomes a habit. It’s that simple. As Walt Disney once said, “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” Time, money, risk, and energy are universal excuses for doing nothing more than maintaining the status quo, but stepping out and breaking the routine is within your power. Unquestionably, the hardest part is simply getting started, making the first step. That single step doesn’t have to be something as big as waking up and deciding to run for president of the American Bar Association. It can be as tiny a step as deciding to walk for 20 minutes each morning, adding broccoli to your diet, or taking on a hobby other than practicing law. The first step doesn’t have to be a marathon, but all marathons begin with a single step out of the ordinary.

This issue of GPSolo has been one of the most fun—and the most challenging—to produce. Connecticut solo Karen Renzulli Lynch did a fantastic job as issue editor, corralling, hounding, and coaxing a record number of lawyers to take time out of their busy lives and write for the magazine. Never before have so many GPSolo readers answered the call and shared as many experiences as they have in this issue. Some 24 lawyers have written about their life experiences in and out of law practice, diverse paths they’ve taken that have enriched their lives, their communities, and the profession. Each of these lawyers has become richer for those efforts and has made our lives richer as well.

The lawyers who contributed to this issue have broken out of ordinary routines and done something for themselves, for their communities, and for the profession—steps ranging from getting a poodle, weaving baskets, firing a client, and helping an old lady to closing down a successful law practice, representing one of the Oklahoma City bombers, and rebuilding a village in El Salvador. They’ve come from every stripe and hue of the legal profession, from Miami to Ponca City, Oklahoma, and they’re ordinary, everyday Main Street lawyers just like you and me who are making a difference in all of our lives. You, too, can make a difference in your life—and others’. Just get out there and Do Something! Like Rabbi Hillel said, “If not now, when?”

 

jennifer j. rose, editor-in-chief of

GPSolo , is a lawyer and writer living in Morelia, Michoacán, Mexico. She can be reached at jenniferrose@abanet.org.

 

 

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