As an attorney, you’re subjected to a high-pressure, high-stress environment on a daily basis. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed, exhausted, and often, burnt out.
There are all kinds of studies on this topic, researching roles such as firefighters, teachers, healthcare workers, and everything in between. What they’ve found is that burnout isn’t based on the amount of hours they worked.
In fact, it was instead based on the type of work respondents were doing, and whether it was deemed motivating and energizing to the individual.
So how do we as leaders combat burnout?
Well, it starts with primarily focusing on small victories — the clients you’re helping, the impact you make on them and people in your community, the team members who you are empowering, and the ability to do the type of work that really aligns with what you love to do and the impact you wish to make.
You may be thinking, “But not everything I do aligns with what I like and the impact I want to make.”
Well then, what’s stopping you from making that so?
If you hate admin work and you’re spending the bulk of your time doing admin work, then undoubtedly over time, you’re going to get exhausted and burnt out and you’re not going to be excited about it. Or maybe you love working on the business, but you’re too tied into various matters inside the business and you want to get out of that cycle.
Perhaps a solution might be to either delegate that work, or to find and hire somebody who can free you up from that so you can focus on what you do like, such as your love of litigating cases and working with clients.
It’s really all about focusing on: what do you enjoy the most about the work that you do, and if you could spend all day doing it, how exciting would that be to you? Would you ever burn out from that?