o Happiness is singing
together when the day is through.
And happiness is those
who sing with you… o
Words and Music by Clark Gesner,
from the Musical
“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”
Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Those words have a particular professional meaning for lawyers. But what happens when they also take on a personal meaning? When pursuing your career no longer holds the interest it once did? When you stop and realize that your passion for your career has dissipated?
This issue is devoted to the topic of mid-career angst, and what to do about it. Some turn to writing, but not all of us can be a John Grisham or Scott Turow. Some turn to activities in addition to the practice of law, such as acting, singing or playing in a rock band. Others sail, or take up sports. Some buy that little red sports car. Sadly, some turn to addictive behaviors that only compound the problem. Others, who feel they have no other option, simply resign themselves to soldiering on in their current roles.
In this issue, our Special Issue Editor Bill Gibson profiles three very different lawyers who have risen to new challenges. And we also have some incredible authors who tell their personal stories and provide their best advice on how to regain that passion for your pursuit of happiness. In some cases this will mean setting a new direction to your practice. In others, it will mean trying to tweak your situation to find a way to accommodate your needs and those of a demanding career. In others, it will mean asking yourself some tough questions that you may have been avoiding for fear of what the answers may bring.
If you have sensed that this issue has a particular meaning for me, you are correct. I am preparing for my own mid-career shift. Make no mistake, the passion for law practice management still burns as hot and bright as it did as a youngish lawyer completing my MBA. Accordingly, I am launching into a new life as an independent law practice management consultant, presenter and writer. As changes go, this isn't a terribly radical change; I have been doing this work as a practice management advisor and in-house lawyer for the past eight years. However, in my new career, I will be able to delve deeper and work closer with clients to set and achieve their goals (along with some of my own). I sense new mountains to climb, rivers to cross and people to help. Also, I look forward to working as part of a consortium of like-minded and energetic professionals titled The Vancouver Group, all whom hail from Vancouver, that sparkling gem of a city on the Canadian West Coast. And I will continue on as Editor-in-Chief of
As usual, I wish to acknowledge and thank the entire creative team that has come together to produce this wonderful issue: our editors, our writers, ABA staff and the Editorial Advisory Board. It is my goal to provide you with world-class practice management advice so that you, too, can sing with happiness when your day is through. While driving that little red sports car.