Last week, I hosted a Total Attorneys Blog Talk Radio show featuring Kevin Houchin in a discussion on how to build a successful legal career and find work/life balance as an attorney.
Houchin is the author of Fuel the Spark: 5 Guiding Values for Success in Law & Life, and he recently founded the Space Between Center to help entrepreneurs reach their full potential through creative business plans and to help attorneys work more effectively with entrepreneurs.
Houchin entered his legal career with the intent to help creative entrepreneurs launch their own small businesses. While attempting to help his clients break free of the restraints of corporate America, Houchin experienced firsthand some of the restraints of traditional law practice business and billing models.
Within five years of his graduation from law school, Houchin learned that the hourly billing method did not work well for his clientele, made up mostly of creative professionals, nor did it work for Houchin and his practice.
As a result, Houchin filed for bankruptcy, but he did not give up. After his bankruptcy was discharged, Houchin drastically changed his billing model and found ways to be both a successful and happy attorney.
On our show last week, he shared a few tips for success in law and life. Here are some of the ideas that I pulled from our conversation, but visit our Blog Talk Radio show page to listen to the full show and learn more:
- Do not accept someone else’s standard of success. Set your own standards of success.
- Become conscious of what you bought into when you became a lawyer, but understand that you do not have to live with everything you do not like.
- The biggest decision people face in life is to accept things as they exist or to accept personal responsibility for changing those things.
- While the practice of law is a stressful profession, attorneys are some of the most empowered people on the planet because they tend to have a higher education level and income than other professionals. Attorneys should use power to effect positive changes.
- Show up in the right places and make the most of your time. Be present in the places where you will meet clients, not just other attorneys.
- Make a national name for yourself, define your niche and communicate your knowledge to others by participating in online groups and blogs.
- Try to pay 100 percent attention during conversations, activities and tasks. This will take conscious effort, but paying attention to the present moment will help you recognize the things that you are willing to accept and the things you want to change both in your work and life.
- Visualize balance in the right way. Balance does not mean that all of the different parts of life should play against one another. For example, work is not the opposite of family; if you want to increase your productivity, you do not have to sacrifice your health.
- Make changes that benefit all areas of your life, and look for the types of actions that will help all areas of your life move in unison toward a positive direction.