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Top 3 Lessons from Michelle Obama

Anna Bezuglova, Marketing Coordinator

For 8 years Michelle Obama graced the world’s stage with her charm, poise and gentle strength as the wife of the first black president of the United States. What many don’t know is that Mrs Obama is a qualified lawyer and social justice advocate. 
Obama, is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School. Her career included working at Sidley Austin before holding positions in the public sector, first as an Assistant to the Mayor in Chicago, then an Executive Director for the Chicago Office of Public Allies, an NGO encouraging young people to work on social issues.

With her book ‘Becoming’ recently being stocked in bookstores. Here are some of Michelle Obama’s top 3 lessons every lawyer should know:

1. Becoming your best self means taking care of yourself.

Lawyers are known for their stoicism which helps them be incredibly good at their jobs. However, Obama believes that we do our best work when we take care of ourselves. For her it was taking herself and her husband for counselling and ultimately she discovered that ‘I’m responsible for my happiness. I’m responsible for how I prioritize my life.’

 

2. Be authentic.

During her commencement speech at The City College of New York, Obama shared how during her career she chose to stay authentic by working on projects that were personal to her. She added though that just because she did what was authentic did not mean she ignored the need to be ‘substantive, strategic and fun’.

 

3. When they go low, we go high. 

In one of Michelle Obama’s most shared speeches discussing how she has chosen to raise her daughters in the eye of the public and the negative influences that come with it. Michelle told the audience that she wanted her children to know the importance of rising above negative influences. It is this poise and grace which separates mediocre lawyers from great lawyers that those aiming to be the best should aim to exude.

“It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.”
– Edmund Hilary
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