For all the 38 years I practiced law, I got up in the morning and went to an office. I rarely brought work home. I was focused on work at the office and focused on family at home.

Many of you have likely found that COVID-19  has changed how you work, perhaps forever.

Are you still working from home? If so, are you in the zone when you are working or are you easily distracted?  I, for one, would be challenged to stay focused.

Being in the zone is when you are so involved in what you are doing and the experience is so enjoyable that nothing else seems to matter. You love doing it for the sheer joy of doing it.

Sounds a lot easier than it is in these trying times. I’m not sure I can help you get focused, especially if you have young kids that aren’t attending virtual classes all day.

Think back when you were a child. When you were playing, you were likely in the zone because you were absorbed in what you were doing at the time. You were intrinsically motivated. As you grew up you likely began to focus on extrinsic motivation, including rewards from doing something and the approval of parents, teachers and others.

As a young lawyer, you may still be driven by extrinsic motivations, salary, bonus, promotion and approval of senior lawyers. If so, think about how you can get back in the zone.

Set some goals that challenge you and keep track of how you are doing. Focus on what you are working on and try to eliminate distractions. Identify 1-3 things you can do to gain control of your career, your life and your future, even in these difficult times.