There are a lot of factors that will dictate the outcome of your case. The facts of the case and the applicable statutes are critical. The attorney’s performance and the judge’s competence are essential and will play an important role.
But there is something else that will have an impact on your case that few clients consider and even fewer discuss with their attorneys.
Your thoughts also matter a great deal.
They play a critical role, because if you are like most people you are convinced that everything you think is true. And because you believe what you think is true you behave and respond based on what you think as opposed to what is actually happening.
Let’s say you have blue eyes and the judge has brown eyes and you believe that people with blue eyes are smarter than people with brown eyes.
Although you may think that your thoughts are private, if you are not extremely careful, your thoughts will be revealed in how you behave.
And unconsciously you may respond to the judge in a way that appears to be disrespectful or condescending. You may be saying “yes sir” and “yes ma’am” but if you are thinking something to contrary, trust me: In court your thoughts will speak louder than your words.
I won’t insult your intelligence by explaining how appearing disrespectful or condescending to the judge could adversely impact your case.
If I could say one more thing, it would be this: It is not just what you are thinking about others that can get you into trouble, what you think about yourself can also create problems in your case.
You make think you don’t deserve to win your case because deep down you don’t think you are worthy. And because you think you are unworthy you will behave in a way that supports your thoughts.
Instead of doing everything you can to win your case, you will begin to sabotage yourself and undermine your case.
I can remember a case early on in my career when I represented a woman who was trying to get custody of her son. She worked as a secretary, and her ex-husband was a doctor. He took every chance he could to remind her that he was better educated and made more money than she did. This was true but it was also true that she had been the child’s primary caretaker since birth.
We went into court with a strong case, I had little doubt she would not be awarded primary custody. That was until she showed up two hours late for the hearing, with no explanation for her tardiness. The parties were awarded joint custody.
Did she have a legitimate reason for her behavior? Or did she allow her thoughts to become contaminated and then acted like she was going to lose?
Thoughts are like rain. You can’t control how long or hard it will fall. That’s why I’m not suggesting you should try to control your thoughts; just be aware of the potential they have to drown your case.
This is an excerpt from Letters to a New Divorce Client. Download a copy below:
Letters to a New Divorce Client
Photo Credit: Visual Hunt