CBA Record February_March 2016


Accordingly, finding a mentor has been challenging because most experienced attorneys that I have encountered are men, or because the female attorneys I have met do not practice litigation like I do. This forced me to be as resourceful as possible. I learned a lot about self-development, motherhood and business. Whether you are a BigLawmom or a fresh graduate from law school, there is a lot of advice that I can give that I wish someone had shared with me when I first started this journey. This is cliché, I know, but children are time-suckers, so this cannot be emphasized enough. Consequently, you have to learn to be extremely efficient with your time. Although children are demanding, there are ways to work around their schedules. Maximize their naptimes and determine what tasks you can complete while they are present. For me, cooking and folding laun- dry are tasks that I can usually complete while my children are playing or eating. Accordingly, I complete those tasks so I can tackle things that must be done when they are sleeping or in childcare. Time allocation does take planning, but once in the habit, it becomes second nature. Another aspect of time-management is cutting out things that waste time. Ask yourself how efficient you are with your time. How much time do you aimlessly scroll on social media? Is watching a rerun of your favorite show really a good use of your time? Thats not to say that one should be constantly working, but rather, your time should be filled with purpose . Delegate Delegating comes in many forms. It can mean ordering pizza instead of cooking. It can mean getting a babysitter when you need to get work done or even take some time for yourself. Delegating can mean having someone come deep clean your house. Another form of delegating is to create your own “systems.” As much as we would The Advice Manage Your Time

love to assign most of our tasks to other people, it can be costly. In lieu of assign- ing tasks to others, I have created systems where I make basic, daily tasks as easy and smooth as possible. These systems allowme to close a few of the “tabs” in my mommy- brain. By making daily tasks easier and more streamlined, I can free up my brain cells to think about more important things, including my practice. One example is meal-planning. Previously, I found myself wasting time each day thinking about what I was going to cook, stopping at the grocery store to pick up one or two key ingredients that I forgot to pick up during my weekly grocery run, and often not having dinner ready until late. Now, I take 20 minutes once a week to plan all meals and write the grocery list accordingly. Another challenge is constantly thinking about all the deadlines and personal and pro- fessional to-dos. I had to-do lists everywhere and all my deadlines were in a calendar, but I still felt scattered and perpetually anxious that I would miss something. I cannot afford a secretary right now, so I made my own. I bought a dry erase board and hung it in my office next to my chair. I wrote down all my open cases’ deadlines, important dates and tasks. I also wrote down a general to-do list and broke it down by days. And there I have it, all my important tasks listed in a single place. Writing everything down not only makes my tasks look less daunting, but it also free up a few more tabs in my brain. Another benefit is that if I find myself using my time aimlessly, it is easy for me to take a quick glance at my dry erase board and tackle a task. The key to getting things done is facing the obstacles that stand between you and completion of the task, and addressing those challenges directly. Especially as mothers and household managers, our time is extremely limited. As long as we choose to be mindful about using our time, we can achieve our goals. Don’t Apologize One thing I struggled with when I first became a mother is how to manage being

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