The Martian is a great film on all levels and well worth watching if you haven’t already. You can actually apply these lessons to your legal career.

In a nutshell it is the story of Mark Watney, an astronaut who is left behind on Mars when his crew need to evacuate the planet and believe him to be dead.

He has nowhere near enough food to survive until a rescue mission could reach him and no way of contacting Earth to let them know he is alive.

So what does he do?

He makes a decision.

He doesn’t think very hard about it. He doesn’t deliberate on it. He has a binary choice and he makes a decision.

His decision is “I am not going to die here”.

This is not a hope, it is not an ambition, it is totally powerful and once made he is determined to survive “no matter what”.

He has no idea how he is going to survive or what he needs to do, but when you make the decision you don’t need to know the “how” or the “what”. To quote from the film they are just “maths problems” and you work through them one at a time.

All you, need is a strong enough reason, a big enough “why” to take your legal career wherever you want to take it.

Now ask yourself what decisions have you made in your life or your legal career? What is your “why”, the driving force that is so strong that it will compel you to make a decision and then to achieve it no matter what.

Most people never decide and end up as a result, living a life or having a legal career that is smaller than they know they are capable of. So make the decision and go for it “no matter what”.

The good news is that however young or old you are it is never too late.

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