This Q&A clip discusses why many lawyers push themselves to an early grave. Harrison attributes this to the atmosphere of law firms, which encourages billing hours and striving for success.
Lawyers are also motivated by the desire to be seen as successful by their peers and competition. The pressure to perform well in school and land a job at a prestigious firm also contributes to this phenomenon.
Ultimately, the nature of the legal profession and the drive to successfully contribute to the high-stress levels of many lawyers.
Well, I think it has to do with the atmosphere.
The atmosphere of a law firm is a sort of behavior because it's in the law firm's best interest to have you bill hours and do all these things. That's a lot of it that lawyers are taught to succeed and be the best in whatever group they go into, so this is just another way that kind of plays itself out.
So I think that's one of the things that drives a lot of lawyers to do that. The desire to see how their peers see them. Often, people care very much about looking like a big deal in front of their peers and what their peers think of them. When they get beyond the point where they care about what people think of them, they care about what they think of themselves, and they're motivated by competition.
Certain people are just very motivated that way, and you almost have to become an attorney in many firms because you need to get good grades and get into the big firm and stay there and do good work. I think that's what drives a lot of people to do that. It's just the nature of it and then how it works.