Desi Lance

“...and we’ll leave the light on for you.”

“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.” – Tom Bodett I can’t believe it has already been a year since I started blogging for Ms. JD. I am beyond grateful for this opportunity to share my life and thoughts and interact with other writers and readers. I wanted this last month’s post to be truly special; however, I realized that sometimes the most special things are the most simple. I came across the above quote and I thought it was a…

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Desi Lance

The Election Through the Eyes of an Ex-Pat

“It is a bitter-sweet thing, knowing two cultures. Once you leave your birthplace nothing is ever the same.” – Sarah Turnbull, Almost French: Love and a New Life in Paris Living abroad during one of the most publicized presidential elections has been quite an experience. Although my friends and family stateside might think that us ex-pats are un-phased by the political bashing and heated arguments, it couldn’t be farther from the truth. Typically people can tell right away that I am not from the UK. As soon as I begin speaking I am identified as an American. Generally I am happy for others…

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Desi Lance

Don’t Worry

“Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles, it empties today of its strength.” – Corrie ten Boom I am what some people would call “a worrier.” I worry whether the email I just sent was overzealous. I worry whether I will get a seat on the tube during my commute. I even worry whether I am getting the recommended five servings of fruit and vegetable on a daily basis. Many times my worrying manifests itself at the office when I am juggling numerous client matters. As lawyers we are completely invested in providing the most comprehensive, accurate and relevant…

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Desi Lance

Those three little words: work, life, balance

“Don't confuse having a career with having a life.” ― Hillary Clinton Work/life balance… this is always a tricky subject to talk about, especially for women. Each of us has our own idea of what it means to be balanced, or whether balance is even attainable in the first place. Many of us go to law school because of our appetite for logic and the need we feel to exercise our minds. We love to brainstorm, strategize, brainstorm some more, build an argument and eventually come to a conclusion. Personally, this thought process is perpetual for me. I have a hard…

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Desi Lance

I am NOT an overnight success

“Timing, perseverance, and ten years of trying will eventually make you look like an overnight success.” – Biz Stone (Co-Founder of Twitter) These days it seems like so many people are becoming overnight successes. A college drop-out builds an app and gets "rich quick." A teenager posts how-to videos on YouTube and gets millions of hits. Someone starts a fashion blog and starts giving interviews on national television. I think to myself… “what am I doing wrong?” The truth behind all of these “success stories” is that we don’t see the time and hard work leading up to these career…

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Desi Lance

For the Dreamers

"Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning." –Gloria Steinem I'm a day dreamer. There I said it. I spend a lot of my time thinking about the future. Most of the time I feel guilty about it because I feel like I'm not "living in the present" as we are so often told to do. However, this quote has made me think very differently about my day dreaming tendencies. When some people think of lawyers, they think we are all logic and reason mixed with a side of serious. Our profession is not viewed as creative or innovative. Instead…

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Desi Lance

Character vs. Success

“Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.” – Albert Einstein Success is a loaded word. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines success as “the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame.” Many people define success as these things, but is there more to success than just that? I watched an interesting TED Talk recently with speaker Dr. Deborah Gilboa; it was about how children today are being raised to focus more on their achievements than their character. Nowadays, many parents are quick to invest in their children’s accomplishments in education and…

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Desi Lance

Rain or Shine?

"If a window of opportunity appears, don't pull down the shade." – Tom Peters Sometimes it’s hard to tell when the right opportunity comes along. I had been working as a US immigration lawyer for just shy of one year when I came across a position at a different company that intrigued me. My initial thoughts were nothing would come of it because the firm wanted an attorney with more experience than I had at that point. However, my approach to work (and life in general) is that you don’t know anything until you try. So, that’s what I did… …

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Desi Lance

Practicing law abroad… why so different?

A lot of people wonder what it’s like to practice law overseas, and what makes it different than practicing in the United States. Sometimes it is difficult for me to pinpoint the distinction because I started my career as an attorney abroad from the get-go. However, I did spend my law school years working in various legal capacities in Chicago before moving to London in 2014. So, I have noticed a couple of things that are different between the two. Global Perspective One of the biggest differences for me in practicing US law in a foreign country is the unavoidable…

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Desi Lance

Today… Then Tomorrow

“The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today.” – H. Jackson Brown, Jr. As a law student or new lawyer, it is easy to get tunnel vision towards the future. Questions like “where do I see myself in 5 years, 10 years or 20 years?” can cloud your professional perspective. It is important to develop the ability to not only look towards the future but also to focus on the present. It’s difficult to accomplish long-term professional goals tomorrow if you take your eye off the proverbial ball today. The inspirational author, H. Jackson Brown, Jr. said it…

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