It's Super Bowl week, and as you can imagine, the energy in the Mile High City is infectious. Community is brewing, and the birthplace of “America the Beautiful” is a giant love fest. The grocery stores, offices, banks and bus stops are all buzzing with “We got this!! Right?” For the past17 Sundays we’ve devoted our sacred recipes, handcrafted microbrews and family days, which took on a whole new religious zeal. All anybody can talk about the past few weeks is spreads, odds and luck. I have to say, as a born and raised Buffalo Bills gal, it warms my heart to be “part of” a Super Bowl team (hold the Norwide jokes please).
It’s been said that fear is the flip side of excitement. I am seeing evidence of this; the verve of January 1st is slowly fading as we approach flipping the calendar past the first month of the New Year. Weekly football stakes, new budgets, revenue goals, and health goals are all officially moving from “game on” and resolutions to tenacity and inevitability. Something about February brings a purposeless calm to the calendar as a whole. The buzz is stripped harshly from the air once the Monday after Super Bowl hits. It really doesn’t matter if you follow football or not, it’s the reality of too many days ahead to count until the next excitement (socially acceptable distraction). There’s a melancholy stillness.
Just like the excitement/anxiety coin tossing around in Colorado right now, I see so many law firms experiencing the same emotions of “This has to work out.” The circumstance might be that you just hired your very first employee, or set a revenue goal that you have never set before, or committed to new office space that you are not certain you can afford. When the hype and excitement is stripped away, we find ourselves in the quiet of “this has to work out,” and that is honestly never a feeling we want to have, especially when it's not “just a game.” So when you find yourself with that feeling, ask yourself, is the “have to” feeling truth? WHY does what we are doing right now have to work? Am I putting the intentional time and intention in (training that new employee), or is the “have to” because I don’t want to go back to the locker room, huddle, engineer Plan B and then recourse.
It is just like the two-minute warning: If you are willing to declare that something just isn’t working, to confront the brutal facts of your current reality, in the face of absolute fear, you can find the courage to stop, recourse and commit to ending the insanity. That’s the beauty. At the end of the game, nothing has to work other than your willingness to let go of “this has to work” and call another play when “Omaha” is no longer going in the right direction.
Molly L. Hall, Co-Founder, Lawyers With Purpose, LLC, and author of Don’t Be a Yes Chick: How to Stop Babysitting Your Boss, Transform Your Job and Work with a Dream Team Without Losing Your Sanity or Your Spirit in the Process.