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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Money As Motivation

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However, this is not true. In fact, the vast majority of lawyers and attorneys work incredibly hard to secure clients, forge relationships with other attorneys and often without every receiving a dime.

I can remember when my father was studying for the Bar exam. He spent hours upon hours each night after he would get home from work, studying at the dining room table. Books thicker than I would have ever imagined lay sprawled out all over the table printed in a typeface that I was convinced you would need a magnifying glass in order to read without getting a headache. In the end, he wound up successfully passing the bar exam and now has his own law practice. Sure, money may have been a motivating factor for him, but more importantly, he wanted a career change. He had been making an excellent six-figure salary with the previous corporation he worked for, but it wasn't enough. He wanted to be his own boss.

So often, it is the American dream to be able to work for ourselves. Especially in this day and age, with the economy in a recession, people are finding more creative ways to work from home and be their own supervisor. Granted, there are some of us who benefit greatly from going in to an actual work place with an office because we may lack the discipline to maintain a regular work schedule otherwise. And while money is always a motivating factor for all of us (because, face it-we need money to live), it does not have to define us. In a time where so many people are being laid off from their jobs- jobs and careers that they have held for years- instead of being disappointed or upset, they are happy for the opportunity to have some time to figure out what it is that they really want to be doing with their life.

Sometimes, if you focus too much on money, you tend to lose focus of everything else in your life- or at least the things that once were important (I.e. family, friends, extra curricular activities). While it is important to make sure that you are financially secure, is it so imporant that your entire life becomes centered around earning as much money as you can. Instead, we have to find a balance between work and play. Think of how much happier children are. They are constantly learning and experiencing new things. Then, as soon as they start to get older, they play less- they experience less. Sure, you may travel every now and then or go on vacation, but too often, we don't even enjoy ourselves as we should because we are worrying about how much money we have left or how much dinner is going to cost- or those snorkeling lessons that you signed up for. Re-think how much money it would take for you to be financially secure and then start focusing on how to enjoy life!

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