After Leaving Firm, Many Interview, No Job

About four years ago, I was laid off from a large financial services firm as general counsel (the Boston division was liquidated). Fortunately, I was picked up by another firm within a few weeks. However, because their whole management team was corrupt and my conscience couldn’t take it, I left within six months. I’ve been seeking work ever since (both on my own and through a consulting company) but nothing is panning out. I have gone on a lot of interviews but I never get the job. Before I throw in the towel on the profession, I thought I would ask for your comments.

Losing a job (and the resulting loss of income) generally triggers uncertainty and anxiety, among many other feelings, and in the midst of all this it is natural to start “scrambling” for a job. It is often more useful, however, to take the opportunity to step back, look at where your career has been and where you hope it will go, and to consider what kinds of work best fit your current needs, strengths, and personality. A more organized, thought-through approach might be more effective, and there are career counselors/coaches who specialize in assisting with this process. It is not clear whether the consulting company through which you’ve sought work is providing this function.

In addition, your comment about throwing in the towel implies that your feelings are about more than just the difficulties of getting a new job; perhaps you are still feeling jaded about the job you left, or disenchanted with the legal profession in general.

It would be useful to get a handle on this issue, because your job seeking actions may be speaking louder than your words. For example, you may be sending out mixed messages during interviews, or sabotaging your efforts in other ways. Suffice it to say that, while you are seemingly doing all the “right” things to secure a new position, something appears to be going wrong somewhere in your process. Perhaps it’s time to consult a mental health professional to examine these matters before you leave lawyering altogether. If you don’t already have a therapist (or for help in finding a career coach or counselor), please feel free to confer with LCL. At times LCL also offers presentations related to career and life goals.

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