Feel the fear and do it anyway
We grow through small victories over fear.
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I sometimes tell people that practicing law involves “feeling the fear and doing it anyway,” again and again. You’ve never structured a company before, but that’s what the client needs. You know nothing about hemp genetics, but that’s the client’s industry. You’ve never filed or argued a motion in this particular court, but that’s what the occasion calls for. Your client is depending on you to protect their rights and assets.
There is no choice but to move forward and get the job done. But you’ll do it, you’ll survive, and you’ll grow as a result. And, as I once heard another attorney say, you’ll develop “callouses” related to that part of your practice. Similar tasks will be far easier the next time you need to perform them.
Life is full of experiences like this, of course — this phenomenon isn’t limited to lawyering. Giving a speech, taking an acting or cooking class, trying a new art form, joining a new community, going to a networking event for the first time, speaking a foreign language: in any of these situations, you may not feel fearless. You may feel social anxiety, perfectionism, and self-doubts about your appearance or capabilities.
But if you feel the fear and do it anyway, you’ll grow, and you’ll more fully realize your human potential.
Ryan McCarl (LinkedIn | Twitter | Blog) is an attorney and educator in Los Angeles who is committed to lifelong learning and growth. If you’d like to receive my new posts by email, please click the button below to subscribe. Subscriptions are free unless you choose to pay:
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