Managing Frustration When Facing An Impossible Contract Workload

May 01, 2024

The reality is that in-house lawyers and professionals have far more work than they can do. The stack of contracts we need to review, negotiate, and approve is overwhelming.

When I was in-house, I'd find myself feeling sad, angry, and frustrated because of my inability to tackle all the work on my plate.

I'd think,"There is no way I can do all this. Don't they know I'm only one person?!" That dialogue in my head would get me more upset, which made it even harder to get the work done.

What I learned is that surviving my stressful job depended less on how much work I had and more on my mindset.

I found more balance and peace about my impossible workload after I reached these two realizations.

First, I accepted that the company's staffing decisions created my workload imbalance.

The company could hire others to make my job more manageable, but it didn't. It wasn't my fault that I could never catch up. My role was designed that way. All I could do was my best within the staffing constraints set by my employer.

Second, I realized what an important resource I was for the company.

The company takes care of its other resources - maintenance on equipment, upgrades on software - so why did I think I should just work until I break?

Seeing it that way helped me feel more comfortable taking time out for myself when I needed it, even when things were crazy. It was just as important for the company as it was for me.

These mindset tweaks helped me find a lot more serenity amid the chaos of my in-house life.

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