The one piece of advice lawyers give prospective law students

Dan CulhaneBlog

Man running with briefcase through hallway


They say it with a wry smile. And then after a bit of contemplation, they suggest that if they do decide to go to law school, they could use their law degree to do something other than practice law.

Of course, practicing law doesn’t have to be awful. Especially if you’re willing to ask the question, “What would make this better?”

  1. Prioritize. The practice of law can be all-consuming, which means you need to prioritize other areas of your life. Health is a big one, along with family, friends and meaningful activities outside of work. In a profession that is more than happy to have you grinding out 70+ hours a week, you have to put workouts, date nights, play dates and hobbies on your calendar and commit fully to these important (but not urgent) activities.
  2. Manage your stress. Practicing law is stressful. And it is made even more so if your only outlet is ranting and raving about the practice of law. Getting enough sleep, eating right and exercise all help us manage stress. Attitude also matters, so learning to focus on the positive aspects of practicing law may help. And of course, there are always relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation and listening to music.
  3. Cut down on the boring and repetitive work. The legal profession isn’t known to be the most tech savvy, but for those willing to adopt legal tech, there are powerful tools to cut down on the boring and repetitive tasks while also increasing effectiveness, efficiency, and profitability. Many lawyers find the complexity of these tools intimidating, so they avoid powerful tech that could actually make a huge difference in their practice—and their outlook.

Asking myself, “What would make this better?” led to the development of Discovery Genie. I needed a simple and powerful way to automate and expedite the time-devouring (and soul-crushing) job of preparing and reviewing documents for disclosure and production. I knew that if I could make this task faster and easier, I could improve my practice and my mental health. When I couldn’t find a solution that was inexpensive and easy to learn and use, I created one myself—one that I use in every case I handle, and one that you can use right now to improve your practice.