Advantage Denton

December 13, 2009

Who Are You, Really?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Melissa Denton @ 6:47 pm

Melissa DentonThis is a time of year that adds a lot of stress to our lives. We have many opportunities for fun and we have lots of commitments and expectations. Mischief abounds. At this time am I: mom, a lawyer, a wife, a colleague, a social friend, a daughter/sister/aunt or just someone who gets tired sometimes?

When litigation in your own life gets piled onto this set of roles and you feel like you are under scrutiny for how you conduct the rest of your life from an outside, judging perspective, the stress multiplies. At times like that, we all just want to huddle back inside our turtle shells.  How in the world are you supposed to reconcile the different kinds of you that are demanded at every different turn?

The only way I know to keep it together when too many stresses come from too many directions is to create a consistent you that can make decisions in any of your roles with integrity to who you are at the core. You have to forgive yourself if you fail to be perfect at this, but continue to get up, dust yourself off, and try again to keep true to values you can believe in. When the mom role conflicts with the lawyer or daughter role, I have to prioritize how I am going to be me and how I can most gracefully keep myself and others happy with my choices. If I am not consistent with my core values, it does not matter if others are happy. I’m not.

People who come to Advantage Denton to have us find the right lawyer for them are, by definition, those who have more stress than normal in life. Even if your reason for needing a lawyer is to close a big and wonderful deal, that is stress-inducing. I propose that a time when litigation or major transactions are looming is the very time when you need to hold on to who you are and what you value. Don’t let controversy or temptation make you sorry later for a decision that stems from abnormal circumstances and failure to be true to your core.

Who are you, really? If you don’t have that figured out before you enter a time of extra stress, please take the time to evaluate and make consistent the different roles and responsibilities. I don’t mean that you should do the best you can. I mean that you should have absolute lines you do not cross and that you correct any mistakes you make immediately. That is how you figure out and maintain who you really are.

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