Jul 11, 2022

Written By Robert Greene

Can a shy person be a lawyer?

Jul 11, 2022

Written By Robert Greene

If your perception of life as a lawyer has been shaped by popular Netflix series or Hollywood movies, you would be forgiven for thinking that you must be larger-than-life to pursue a career as a lawyer. And whilst many lawyers are bold (and sometimes brash), not all lawyers are.

What does it take to be a lawyer?

Being a lawyer is not about being overly self-confident; in fact, being too self-assertive can be off-putting. Of course, for certain lines of work, such as courtroom advocacy, having the confidence to speak in front of people is important. But not all areas of law require lawyers to command the room, and many other skills and traits are required to become a lawyer.

There are many skills that lawyers require, from excellent written and oral communication skills through to strong attention to detail and good teamwork skills, to name but a few. There is nothing stopping a shy person from developing these skills.

In addition, a lawyer should be a good listener, have empathy for their clients, and be a problem-solver. Again, there is nothing that precludes shy people from possessing or developing these traits.

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What do lawyers do?

The range of work that lawyers do is vast. Not all lawyers are involved in contentious work, many are involved in transactional and advisory work. These may be areas of work that are more suited to a shy person.

But, if litigation is an area of law that you are interested in, there is nothing stopping you from gaining the confidence to speak in public (if you want to become a barrister or solicitor-advocate, for example). In fact, most people find the prospect of public speaking daunting, so even the most confident aspiring lawyers are likely to have to develop the confidence to speak in public.

If you want to become a lawyer, then do not let your shyness hold you back. There is no one type of lawyer, and you may have many skills and traits required to become a successful lawyer that your less shy peers do not.

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