In Episode 026 of The Former Lawyer Podcast, Sarah talks with Toya Gavin. Toya practiced law for over 10 years, eventually opening her own practice, before finding herself struggling with severe depression. After reexamining her life and her career goals, she started her company, Legally Bold, where she coaches and consults with women with J.D.s who are dissatisfied in their careers or who are trying to transform their side hustles into full-time careers.
In this conversation, Toya shares about:
- Why the transition from an undergrad engineering major to law school was so jarring;
- How most law students think they’re going to snag a highly paid job, but the numbers reveal otherwise;
- Why she expected to enjoy legal practice, even though she didn’t love the law school environment;
- What practice she turned to when she realized that she didn’t like patent law (the obvious choice for her as an engineer);
- What she loved about running her own practice (that had nothing to do with legal work);
- How her “whole life shifted” when she experienced what was eventually diagnosed as clinical depression;
- The extremely high rates of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse amongst lawyers;
- Why her best friend had to tell her that what she was experiencing was not normal before she realized she should get help;
- Why being high-functioning and a lawyer poses significant obstacles to people getting help for mental health issues;
- Why everyone should see a therapist;
- How Legally Bold grew from what she learned through her own experience of depression and the knowledge that many lawyers experience the same;
- and much more!