Posts Tagged ‘power’

Melissa’s Magic Paralegal Wand

Friday, April 9th, 2010

I do hope you have been following Melissa at Paralegalese as she goes through her (somewhat painful) transition from an one-attorney firm in a small Alabama town to a larger firm in Memphis. Her most recent post, The Calm After the Storm,  records some of her efforts to adjust. I am sure her adventure will end well. Here’s the part of her post that most supports my confidence:

Back to my original point in the above paragraph: I have realized that I have the power to make my job mean more. After all, it is what it is, and perception is subjective. If the task doesn’t have inherent meaning beyond completing step 42 of steps 1,894, then I will grab my magic paralegal wand, wave it in the air, and remind myself that every step in the long litigation process is one move toward the end game. 

The Empowered Paralegal concludes with this thought: “Empowerment does not come from the outside. It comes from within. It is not granted, it is earned. The empowered paralegal gains that power and the conficence that comes with being a professional, competent, effective and efficient member of the legal.” Melissa realizes this (realized it before reading the book) and, as a result, will do fine whether she stays in Memphis or moves on at some point.

In any case, we’re rooting for you, Melissa. Hang in there!

Controlling The Scream

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

Being an empowered, professional paralegal is all about taking control of that which you can take control. In many circumstances all  you can control is yourself. Realizing that and managing the consequences is, however, far better than any alternative. So, I was interested in the responses to a question posted on the Paralegal Today listserv:

What do you do to relieve your stress level when all you want to do is scream, set your desk on fire and run away??
Naturally, I have my own answer to this question, but for this post  I am handing the keyboard over to a guest, Kelly K. Corbin, TBLS, ACP,  of  CORBIN LEGAL SERVICES in Seabrook, Texas. Here is her response, posted in full with her permission:

My approach is similar to Nancy’s. [I walk around the block. Usually after I fire off a really gripe-y email (via my personal account) to a good friend.]  Then I take it a step beyond that.  I consciously choose to take my power back.  I choose not to let some outside influence (my attorney, co-worker, opposing counsel, my computer, busted copier, whatever) take my power away.  I make a conscious decision not to let it have power over me.  I realized a few years ago that there was no situation that was worth the rise in my blood pressure.  I LOVE my job and I am a workaholic by nature.  I admit that I thrive on the stress, but I have found that there is a big difference in the adrenaline rush of the stress of trying to get it all done and done well and letting outside influences (typically completely out of my control) exert a power hold on me.  You can’t control a situation, but you can control how you react to a situation!!!  Cliche?  Yes!  True?  Absolutely!    I have worked for some pretty unreasonable attorneys in my many years in this practice, but even the most unreasonable has never fired someone for taking a deep breath, taking a quick 5 minute walk or standing up for themselves.  Everything we do in life is a choice.  I CHOOSE to retain my power! Thanks for your contribution, Kelly.

PS – if all of this zen stuff isn’t working for you, maybe it’s time to scream (literally), set fire to your desk (figuratively) and RUN AWAY!!!!!!   Life is too short not to spend your day doing something you love with people you love (or at least can stand to be around [smile!])!!!!!!!!
HANG IN THERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!