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Imposter Syndrome

Unless you’re a full bore egomaniac you’ve probably experienced self-doubt.

Perhaps you’ve even experienced that particular kind of self-doubt known as “imposter syndrome.”

That is, feeling like you don’t really know something important that people around you assume that you know.

So how is imposter syndrome relevant to building a smooth-running law practice?

Well, because I’ve noticed that it’s a pervasive root cause of trouble for many solo and small firm lawyers.

Particularly those who’ve been practicing law for a number of years.

Once you’ve been practicing law for 5 or 10 years people start to assume you know things that maybe you don’t quite know.

Especially if you’re running your own practice.

For example, your friends, family and colleagues will all assume you have a firm grasp of how to effectively manage the business side of things.

But maybe you don’t feel so confident about the business side.

Maybe you aren’t as organized as you feel like you should be.

Maybe you aren’t as profitable as you need to be.

So you feel that self-doubt that I mentioned above.

And when people around you talk about what a successful lawyer you are…

You feel like an imposter.

Believe me, I understand because I felt that way too.

Mostly about the business of getting clients. I felt like I lacked the talent to market my practice.

I didn’t even believe that one could learn to do marketing.

I thought some people had a knack for it, and some didn’t.

And when people would pat me on the back and say, “man you’re working at a prestigious firm, you must be doing great,” I’d think…

Well, yeah but I don’t have my own clients so I’m actually not all that successful.

In other words, I felt like an imposter. And that lack of confidence plagued me for years.

It kept me from starting my own firm to practice law on my own terms.

Eventually I managed to crawl out of the quicksand that is the essence of Imposter Syndrome.

I stumbled upon the power of technology (the internet in particular) as a way of reaching a lot of people easily.

And then I discovered that authenticity is the real fuel for getting people to easily know, like and trust you.

The power of internet-fueled authenticity and credibility should not be underestimated.

But, unfortunately it is.

I know for a fact that there are many good attorneys who truly care about helping clients but don’t have enough good clients to feel like their practices are successful.

And many times they feel like imposters.

But I know that they are just a few steps away from true success and massive confidence.

The key is learning how to effectively market their skills so the right kind of clients are drawn to them.

The internet has made this much easier. But you still have to communicate in the right way.

And that’s the thing I see people struggling with the most.

But communicating in the right way is a learnable skill. Just like everything else about running a business.

Once you admit to yourself that you need to learn a skill and are willing to try, then you will learn it.

P.S. If you're a practicing lawyer, check out this Law Practice Assessment . After answering a few questions, you'll get detailed recommendations for improving five key areas of your practice.
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