Success without passion?

(Please Ask Questions and Answer Questions)

I decided on law school because...

I love it! Law is my passion.
53
36%
My passion is actually ___, but Law was more practical.
34
23%
I don't have passions- Law was just a pragmatic choice.
49
33%
Other
12
8%
 
Total votes: 148

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Lyndon
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Success without passion?

Postby Lyndon » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:56 pm

Is it possible to be successful in law school and, subsequently, as an attorney without being passionate about the field? ("success" as defined by personal fulfillment, be it competency at the job, financial success, or true enjoyment).

I'm a sophomore in college right now and still haven't discovered my passion, the field that I want to work in for the rest of my life. I interned at a boutique law firm last summer for a month - working closely with the attorneys there, I found their day-to-day job interesting and I wouldn't mind doing it myself.

But there was no *wow* factor, no epiphany or certainty that this was my passion.


The question that I'd like to pose to the forum is about your motivation for choosing law as your career (a decision that's as important as whom to marry). Is it because it's your passion? Or did you just settle on it as the most pragmatic path to take? And to those of you who did just "settle", do you regret not searching further for a passion?
Last edited by Lyndon on Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

viking138
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby viking138 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:29 pm

In my opinion, unless you're very very lucky, you're not going to have both a career and marriage you're passionate about because the balance will be close to impossible. Personally, my relationships have always been my passion. I care about my friends and family much more than I do my activities and work. I am going to law school and viewing it as a professional school that will prepare me for a career. Basically, I will be working to live, not living to work. I will work to help support my family and enable me to do the things I love but I will never sacrifice my family or relationship for my job (which is why I plan to work in corporate law for a few years then get out to start a family).

Not everyone is like that, some people want their whole lives to be about their career. That's totally fine but if that is you, I think you're going to want to find a career that you feel strongly about or you will be pretty unhappy. Good luck, and chill back a bit...you're only a sophomore!


Edit: As for "settling," I've been lucky enough to be accepted to T6 law schools so barring a major mess up on my part, a law career should provide me with a really good quality of life. So no, I don't feel I'm settling. I feel I'm entering a field that will provide me with the support for the life I hope to have.
Last edited by viking138 on Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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JazzOne
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:32 pm

When I first decided to apply to law school, I thought of it as a practical choice. Once I began my first semester, I realized that I really love studying law.

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kn6542
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby kn6542 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:34 pm

Lyndon wrote:Is it possible to be successful in law school and, subsequently, as an attorney without being passionate about the field?

You might want to consider your definition of success. Success isn't money and prestige, unless you're not really a full person. It's not clear why you are asking this question.

Lady Croft
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Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:32 pm

Re: Success without passion?

Postby Lady Croft » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:38 pm

:roll:
Last edited by Lady Croft on Tue Dec 07, 2010 6:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

heyguys
Posts: 285
Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 8:57 pm

Re: Success without passion?

Postby heyguys » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:38 pm

JazzOne wrote:When I first decided to apply to law school, I thought of it as a practical choice. Once I began my first semester, I realized that I really love studying law.


Yeah, well, the next hurdle will be seeing whether you like practicing law :D

Oh, and as for me, it was definitely a utility decision.

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Lyndon
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Joined: Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:31 pm

Re: Success without passion?

Postby Lyndon » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:43 pm

kn6542 wrote:
Lyndon wrote:Is it possible to be successful in law school and, subsequently, as an attorney without being passionate about the field?

You might want to consider your definition of success. Success isn't money and prestige, unless you're not really a full person. It's not clear why you are asking this question.


Definitely not purely the money/prestige version, but rather in the sense that the job is fulfilling and brings happiness (in the Aristotelian sense). I won't deny that, for most people, money and prestige does factor into that happiness aspect. Both there are other factors, such as competency, enjoyment, etc.

I'll edit the opening post to make that more clear.

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Doritos
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Doritos » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:13 pm

I have never been an attorney so I can't say whether or not I'm "passionate" about a job I've never had. I've made a pragmatic choice about a career based on a variety of factors none of them including my "passion". Passion seems to me to be too much like feeling. I can feel passionate one day about something and then not a week later. Cold, unfeeling rationality is how I made my choice.

flcath
Posts: 1502
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:39 pm

Re: Success without passion?

Postby flcath » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:20 pm

I think it's a mix, and I bet this applies to most people here.

What I'd really love to do is be a mountain-climbing instructor for NOLS in Wyoming, but from what I've heard that's barely a five-figure salary. I grew up with physician parents (far more prestige and job-security than law, but the hours, academic rigor, academic debt, and academic duration make law's laughable by comparison), and thus acquired a taste for the upper-middle class lifestyle. On the other hand, there are more lucrative--and certainly more respected--careers out there than law, but law seems relatively interesting, gives you an out if you don't like it (I'm not saying the JD is "great for going into non-legal fields", but it's not like an MD where you're truly stuck), and still provides a good QoL.

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kn6542
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby kn6542 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:23 pm

Doritos wrote:I have never been an attorney so I can't say whether or not I'm "passionate" about a job I've never had. I've made a pragmatic choice about a career based on a variety of factors none of them including my "passion". Passion seems to me to be too much like feeling. I can feel passionate one day about something and then not a week later. Cold, unfeeling rationality is how I made my choice.

"Passion" usually refers to something you're really into. If you feel into it one day and not that next, you aren't really into it.

Before you start pretending to be wholly "rational", you might consider that a rational decision that doesn't factor in your desires and interests is not a fully rational decision.

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Doritos
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Doritos » Fri Jan 01, 2010 9:09 pm

kn6542 wrote:
Doritos wrote:I have never been an attorney so I can't say whether or not I'm "passionate" about a job I've never had. I've made a pragmatic choice about a career based on a variety of factors none of them including my "passion". Passion seems to me to be too much like feeling. I can feel passionate one day about something and then not a week later. Cold, unfeeling rationality is how I made my choice.

"Passion" usually refers to something you're really into. If you feel into it one day and not that next, you aren't really into it.

Before you start pretending to be wholly "rational", you might consider that a rational decision that doesn't factor in your desires and interests is not a fully rational decision.



Where did I say I did not factor in my desires and interests? I said I made the decision based on a variety of factors w/ none including "passion". I do not think that me being interested in something or desiring something equals being passionate about it. Dictionary.com defines passion as "boundless enthusiasm" and I do not have that for anything I am interested in or desire. and I know I am not wholly "rational" but I try very hard to be when it comes to decisions that involve 6 figures of debt and strong career implications. I apologize for coming across as otherwise

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biggamejames
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby biggamejames » Fri Jan 01, 2010 9:10 pm

One of the most pernicious lies we tell our children is that everyone has a calling or passion in life; the truth is that most people just don't. Don't feel bad about not "discovering" yours.

And yes, you can be successful in law school even if it's not your "passion."

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Borhas
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Borhas » Sat Jan 02, 2010 10:18 pm

At some point you have to a purpose in life... some idealized version of yourself that you work towards approaching. If you don't have passion in your work, then you have to have it in your family, friends or hobby... something. You can't live life without the desire to fulfill your ideal and be a happy/successful person.

Renzo
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Renzo » Sat Jan 02, 2010 10:47 pm

Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."

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MC Southstar
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby MC Southstar » Sat Jan 02, 2010 10:48 pm

Everyone should just go into porn, then produce porn that no one watches.

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby OperaSoprano » Sun Jan 03, 2010 12:24 am

Renzo wrote:Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."


Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

WhyBother?
Posts: 137
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:54 pm

Re: Success without passion?

Postby WhyBother? » Sun Jan 03, 2010 12:41 am

viking138 wrote:In my opinion, unless you're very very lucky, you're not going to have both a career and marriage you're passionate about because the balance will be close to impossible. Personally, my relationships have always been my passion. I care about my friends and family much more than I do my activities and work. I am going to law school and viewing it as a professional school that will prepare me for a career. Basically, I will be working to live, not living to work. I will work to help support my family and enable me to do the things I love but I will never sacrifice my family or relationship for my job (which is why I plan to work in corporate law for a few years then get out to start a family).

Not everyone is like that, some people want their whole lives to be about their career. That's totally fine but if that is you, I think you're going to want to find a career that you feel strongly about or you will be pretty unhappy. Good luck, and chill back a bit...you're only a sophomore!


Edit: As for "settling," I've been lucky enough to be accepted to T6 law schools so barring a major mess up on my part, a law career should provide me with a really good quality of life. So no, I don't feel I'm settling. I feel I'm entering a field that will provide me with the support for the life I hope to have.


Congrats on your acceptances! Do you mind if I ask how you plan to finance school? I used to want to do what you're talking about (not corporate law but take time off for a family) but it seems like taking loans for a T6 school make that all but impossible. It also disqualifies you for many loan repayment programs, which really bothers me. In a perfect world, men and women would share family responsibilities, but since it's not that way, it's hard for me to figure out how these policies (about uninterrupted work time verses total work time for loan repayment) are not blatantly sexist.

Renzo
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Renzo » Sun Jan 03, 2010 12:44 am

OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."


Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

I have interests and concerns and beliefs and values, but not so much with the passion. What can I say, I'm an emotionless void.

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Doritos
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Doritos » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:02 am

Renzo wrote:
OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."


Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

I have interests and concerns and beliefs and values, but not so much with the passion. What can I say, I'm an emotionless void.



+1

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OperaSoprano
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Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 1:54 am

Re: Success without passion?

Postby OperaSoprano » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:11 am

Renzo wrote:
OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."


Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

I have interests and concerns and beliefs and values, but not so much with the passion. What can I say, I'm an emotionless void.


Renzo, I don't believe it for a second. :D

I do wish I could be an emotionless void on occasion. No way to make them go away, so best live with them. Are you an I/ENTJ?

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vanwinkle
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:21 am

Sometimes I wonder if I can be successful with passion. You can always have too much of something, and I definitely have too much. It definitely gets in the way sometimes, enough that I worry.

ToTransferOrNot
Posts: 1928
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:40 am

The vast majority of people don't work jobs they're "passionate" about.

Even for those lucky few who get their "dream job," eventually, most of those people come to regard those positions as "just a job." I know quite a few people who work in the music field--major symphony orchestras, chamber artists, etc., and most of them don't have the same "passion" for it as they used to.

Renzo
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Renzo » Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:00 am

OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:
OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:Passion is for 12 year old girls. Adults don't have "passion," they have "jobs."


Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

I have interests and concerns and beliefs and values, but not so much with the passion. What can I say, I'm an emotionless void.


Renzo, I don't believe it for a second. :D

I do wish I could be an emotionless void on occasion. No way to make them go away, so best live with them. Are you an I/ENTJ?

Yes, as a matter of fact (had to take the Meyer-Briggs twice, the I/E went different ways both times).

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby OperaSoprano » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:34 am

Renzo wrote:
OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo wrote:
OperaSoprano wrote:
Renzo, I'm disappointed. I have passion.

Honestly, this thread is a perfect personality study. Clearly we're all interested in law, and for those of us prone to passions, law can certainly ignite them.

I'm passionate about working with people, and fascinated by law. I hope it will help me do the former.

I have interests and concerns and beliefs and values, but not so much with the passion. What can I say, I'm an emotionless void.


Renzo, I don't believe it for a second. :D

I do wish I could be an emotionless void on occasion. No way to make them go away, so best live with them. Are you an I/ENTJ?

Yes, as a matter of fact (had to take the Meyer-Briggs twice, the I/E went different ways both times).


Haha, I called it! I seriously believe there is something to that test. I read the description of ENFP and was spooked. Feeling types are more likely to get carried away by passion, and I don't have to tell you such is true of me.

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Panther7
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Re: Success without passion?

Postby Panther7 » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:55 am

INTP here

Rodin's Thinker is introverted. Here these thinkers ponder the apparent chaos of the world in order to extract from it the universal truths and principles that can be counted on. These principles, once extracted, will provide the logical structure on which to build strategies.

They have a finely nuanced ability to analyse situations, find root causes and foresee consequences. They distrust action taken too quickly without the necessary investigation. They are usually levelheaded, objective, impersonal yet intensely involved in problem solving. They are fiercely independent, seeking input and comments from a chosen few. When reporting to others, they need to establish credibility first: their own and that of the person they are reporting to. If the gap in knowledge and expertise is too great and their own proficiency dismissed, belittled or ignored, they will lose interest and motivation.

They are less interested in running the world as they are in understanding it. They are curious and capable of explaining complex political, economic or technological problems, taking great pleasure in explaining all the factors and intricacies. They are rigorous with their thoughts and analysis, choosing the exact words that convey precisely what is meant. They may spend a lot of time defining words, concepts and systems in order to define a problematic solution.

They are armchair detectives, scientists and philosophers, spending most of their time in quiet reflection to ponder truth, and solve mysteries. They may tend to neglect social requirements and responsibilities, finding many relationships to be too superficial to be of much interest.



Surprisingly, that is pretty damn good. Although I tend to think this is a rarer personality.

edit: anyone have a list of what the percentages for each personality are?

edit2: nm, found it, it's located on wikipedia. only 1%, rarest type. not surprised really, never really ran into someone who thinks like me. always found it a little odd.




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