Anne Marie Seibel, a litigation partner in the Birmingham office, serves as cochair of the Woman Advocate Committee. She is published in the "Words of Wisdom" section of the Woman Advocate, a publication of the American Bar Association's Section of Litigation.
How Do You "Make It Work" When Your Life Is Filled with Competing Obligations?
Learn to Delegate
To me, making it all work means letting go in ways that are not necessarily easy for a successful litigator. It means delegating—both at home and at work. This requires prioritizing work and home responsibilities and determining which of each can be successfully handled by someone else. Of course, it also requires taking the time to find and train able assistants and to be sure they know how much they are appreciated. Making it work also means accepting that there are many things that are out of your control. As a litigator, you know that your time may be dictated by the court. And, as a parent, you quickly learn that the world can stop unexpectedly for a child's illness. It takes patience and discipline to be ready for such uncertainty on a daily basis and to learn to roll with the punches. Finally, making it work means building up a support network. I wouldn't be able to get by without friends and family near and far who are willing to stop everything to help out and to offer words of encouragement. That network can help make it work even when it seems that it cannot possibly all come together.