Trial battle and all battle includes a need to realize maximum potential, and transcending funks
My criminal defense clients come to me often feeling out of balance. I often am among the first people they tell about their predicament.
This situation is imperfectly akin to a seriously injured emergency room visitor hoping to be helped by a doctor with all the attributes of caring and competency, from intelligence, to street smarts, to a good bedside manner, and to true confidence and competence. Most of all, the emergency room visitor wants the doctor to fix his problem as best as can be fixed, and will be happy for some magic as well.
Clearly, I must engage with clients beginning right where they are, even if that is on a roller coaster, so long as I do not allow myself to get swept away by the roller coaster in the process. At my best, I am fully grounded and still while alongside my client feeling like s/he is on a rollercoaster that s/he can in fact depart at any time.
We are all related, so what works for me in reaching my full potential to effectively defend my clients can also work for clients to transcend their funks in order for me and each of my clients to work more powerfully and effectively as a team.
Persuasion being at the heart of successful litigation — with persuasion needing excellent and total preparation, devotion, focus, ability, and passion — I repeatedly write about persuasion.
Following are some of my further crystallized thoughts about achieving personal and professional success and successful persuasion:
-Imagine an unlimited powerful energy source always being at everyone’s disposal. This is a reality within the grasp of all, even if they falter and return to the energy source.
– Negative energy can be neutralized. Past mis-steps can be paved over by finding and returning to the right path. Multiple paths exist to reach the ultimate destination.
– When you care about each client, truly care, as if s/he were the world’s most important person, you will do great things for your client.
– The client will know when you truly care, and when your fee becomes secondary to serving your client.
– When your client is presenting rants and other challenges, take some time for just you and your thoughts to figure out your role in creating and perpetuating that imbalance, how to do better, and to wish and achieve the best footing for you both. Remember, there is no “out there” for the mind.
– We succeed better in all ways when stepping out of our roles and relating as souls, in the moment.
– Enter the wrestling ring absorbing all the good energy. When surprised by the opponent, acknowledge that s/he also has found and applied powerful energy. Rather than being debilitated by the opponent’s excellence, appreciate this opportunity to be required to reach new heights to overcome the opponent. Because we all are connected, a wrestling match at once is about neutralizing and besting the opponent, and bettering yourself.
– If knocked down, get right back up, even if you need to imagine doing so with an imaginary air pump. If you bleed from a cut, you work on the cut. Why would you not do the same when you stumble, rather than knocking yourself down further with curses at yourself?
– Do not pump out your chest with pride. Pride has no place in personal success.
– We don’t worry about our reputation when competing against ourselves. Worrying about reputation is debilitating. Apply yourself fully to achieving your best.
– When we dwell on/in the shadows, we miss the moment’s enchantment, magic, light and opportunities and let darkness win.
– When we dwell on slipping or being knocked down, we weaken ourselves and slip and get knocked down again.
– Achieving calmness is key to achieving success. How to achieve calm standing on a packed, bumpy bus or subway? Become one with the ride, in the moment, with the fascinating technology and precious souls here and far.
– An achieved colleague once questioned having a taijiquan article, by me, on our criminal defense newsletter. Practicing and following the principles of taijiquan makes one battle-ready. What good is brute force?
– Joe Frazier knocked Muhammad Ali down. Ali got back up, and eventually performed spectacularly again.
– The sky has no limit when you see every part of the universe as reachable and decline to see yourself as being at the center of the universe. I believe in being at one with limitless time and space. Jazz great Herbie Hancock worked incredibly hard and is at once incredibly modest and achieved in extraordinary ways. His modesty enabled him to be in awe of band member Buster Williams’s ability to reach quantum heights during a 1972 performance on no sleep, and Hancock’s insistence on personal excellence enabled him to ask Williams, and learn from him, on how Williams had reached such heights. Although Williams focused Hancock on the benefits of Williams’s Buddhist practice, the key lesson I take here is the readiness to keep on learning and the modesty to seek out others in learning how to find, create, and stay on the path of achievement.
– Take calculated risks. In his autobiography Possibilities, jazz great Herbie Hancock talks about the risk he took of leaving the security of his postal service job to focus his professional time on music. He then waited awhile for his phone to ring. Eventually it rang off the hook, starting with gigs that did not pay enough weekly, to following jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd’s advice about how to lock in the next steps of his great musical destiny by telling Miles Davis he was not working with any bands at the time when Hancock was, and by locking in a musical deal with Blue Note not only to transcend the recipe of including compositions by others, but also to keep the publication rights to Hancock’s compositions.
– Do not be debilitated by anything, but do not ignore others’ unjust actions either. Once again, Herbie Hancock’s autobiography provides a lesson here, highlighting his ability at once to recognize the rampant racism in the world, but learning to transcend it. When judges and prosecutors trespass on the Constitution, I do not benefit for my client to get debilitated by those trespasses. I can make my appellate record when there is one to make. I can call the judge or prosecutor on their trespass at the right time and in the right way. I can expose their trespasses to my colleagues and to the public, all while keeping my full strength for me, my clients, and justice.
Be here now. Be in the present at all times, with everyone, with yourself, and with everything. Give those you care about your full presence and caring. Treat all with powerful lovingkindness. Be here now. Deeply bowing to and thanking Ram Dass, Beop Jeong Seunim , Sharon Salzberg, and Dipa Ma for teaching me that.