By: John W. Shaw, Whitaker Chalk Swindle & Schwartz PLLC
As I write this article, the countdown to Christmas is at T-minus 16 days and counting. I have done zero shopping. I am just getting over Thanksgiving break. And, by getting over, I mean I can finally fit back into something other than my big-boy pants. You know; the ones with the elastic waistband.
Just kidding, I really don’t own a pair of those. But I have, on occasion, Googled them to see if they have risen to the level of fashion that won’t result in anyone realizing that I am wearing pants with an elastic waistband. They haven’t. They are close with the denim/faux jean sweatpants, but I haven’t quite given up on life enough to resort to becoming the “sweatpants lawyer.” (Disclaimer: If “sweatpants lawyer” is someone’s shtick, I am unaware of it, and I meant no offense.)
Sorry, I got caught up in a moment there.
Shortly after Christmas, of course, is the New Year. Full of its resolutions, goals, and new beginnings; the New Year always brings about an opportunity to better ourselves and to reflect on things we did well and—in my case—not so well. More important than the gifts and new beginnings that this time of year brings about is the opportunity to spend time with family. I sometimes find it hard to break away from my identity as a “Lawyer.” But, this time of year, I am always reminded that I am, first, a “Dad,” “Husband,” “Son,” “Brother,” “Friend.” (I could of course continue but I will not because I feel like I wasted enough time with the elastic waistband diatribe above.)
In this month’s eNews are some amazing reminders of our roles other than “Lawyer.” We are “Role Models” taking a pledge to not drive distracted anymore. We are “Mentors” trying to help those that may not have access to others to bounce ideas off of. We are “Interns” looking for ways to increase our likelihood of success in the legal market upon graduation.
Remember that this time of year is a time to shed the “I’m a Lawyer” identity and embrace your other—more important—identities in your family and community. Take some time off. Spend some time with your loved ones. The office, courthouse, board room, and conference calls will all still be there on January second.