I have regularly posted about the joys of being an independent practitioner and striking out on my own. An equally relevant question is the opposite one; what is the most difficult part about being an independent practitioner?
Without question, the most difficult part about being an independent practitioner is the stress and strain of running your own business. There is a tremendous amount of uncertainty in any business effort. The hardest part about being an independent practitioner is laying awake at night worrying about all those things you can’t control. I would be the first to admit that good old fashioned dumb luck certainly plays a part in success or failure. However, success is far more likely if you have the right mindset. You have to find a way to deal with all those issues you can’t control which crop up almost every day in your practice and set you back. Instead of worrying about those things you have to accept them and embrace them. Psychologically, you have to view them for what they are, problems. Then you have to set out to solve the problems as they arise.
Too often those problems seem bigger than they really are. The phone line goes down. The internet connection goes down. Email stops working. The file server disappears off the network. A disgruntled client calls and starts giving you grief. You're uncertain about whether or not new clients will walk in the door tomorrow, next week or next month. Bills arrive at your desk which you forgot about or didn’t anticipate. You end up with too much work and cant possibly get it done in a timely fashion. The problems which arise are endless. A successful lawyer views those problems for what they are and sets out to solve them in a rational way.
The hardest part about being an independent practitioner is finding the right mindset to deal with the issues which arise and laying in be awake at night trying to figure out how you are going to solve them.