I’ve been hiding out the last couple of days. Though it’s only been a day and half since I’ve been very productive, I feel guilty about taking the time to recoup from a very busy week and an extremely stressful gig this past weekend.
Let me tell you about my gig this weekend.
Previously, I have discussed my work with medical students on communication skills. But, I also work with law students and young law associates. I am an actor with a company called PowerPlays Coaching. We work at law schools and firms in the NYC metro area on a variety of projects, from deposition skills to cross examination technique to mock trial.
Most of the work is very challenging. For example this past weekend I played a high powered attorney suing her ex-firm for sexual discrimination. She was passed over for partner after ending an affair with a partner. The case file is at least 200 pages…the book is purposefully un-numbered!
All weekend, law students deposed my character. On top of the challenge of having over 200 pages of dates and details memorized, I had the added challenge of conducting myself like a “shark”, tossing around legalize and giving the lawyers as hard of a time as possible! It was extremely difficult work. Each night I came home and was in bed by 9 PM.
It can be hard, in some cases, to remember that this work is also “acting for good…”. Helping medical student become better communicators is a service to mankind, right?
But helping lawyers become better lawyers…blurry. I know it shouldn’t be. I know there are great people, who are lawyers, who are doing great things. I do!
But weekend’s like this past are often marred with a handful of aggressors who, during formative feedback sessions, say things like “I don’t want to give her a chance to talk.” or “I don’t care what the details are.” or “I just want to get to the fun part!” or “I just want to prove I’m right!”
Perhaps something said during feedback will click and come back to these lawyers someday. Perhaps not. My challenge is to focus my energies on those eager to learn and improve.
Then my good work will help others do good work. Leading…acting…changing the world for good.