Personality and Fit

I think it takes a certain personality to become a great trial lawyer.  I don’t have that personality, but no one at my firm realizes it yet.  I’ve repeatedly taken the Briggs-Myers personality test, and I consistently score as an INTJ, a personality type known for Introversion, iNtuition, Thinking, and Judgment.  It’s a relatively rare personality type among the general population, but exceedingly common among people interested and disciplined enough to pursue early retirement.

As an INTJ, I am not extroverted, and often I feel anxious in social situations.  This does not make for a good trial lawyer, who must persuade and charm jurors and judges, and butt heads with opposing counsel.  Sure, I can force it, but that takes an immense amount of energy, and makes me anxious thinking about being put such situations (like taking a deposition I know is being defended by a royal b*tch/jerk).

In addition to how hard lawyers are expected to work, the mismatch between my job and personality type makes me want to retire even earlier.  On the other hand, being a good trial lawyer also requires strategy and execution — two things INTJs happen to be good at.  We’ll see which side wins out.

One thought on “Personality and Fit

  1. Being great isn’t the issue though is it.

    It is enjoying your life while doing the work.

    There is no point being great, but wasting your life, or dying early.

    Studies show that ‘A’ types (ie your peers) die earlier and and are more stressed.

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