‘It’s great to know The Solicitors’ Charity will be there for me in my future career’ Solicitor Apprentice, Hannah Iddon
As a solicitor apprentice at international law firm Pinsent Masons, Hannah Iddon is relishing the opportunities she has been given to work with highly experienced solicitors and enjoys the challenge of working under pressure when deadlines are set. She does, however, recognise that stress is part and parcel of working in the legal profession and can see the strain that big matters and strict deadlines could ensue.
“There certainly appears to be an abundance of responsibility on the shoulders of solicitors which could plausibly begin to impede one’s personal life and mental health,” she says.
She was pleased to discover that The Solicitors’ Charity was there to work with qualified solicitors in times of need with a holistic package taking into account emotional, vocational, financial and physical need. They got in touch with Hannah via LinkedIn to make her aware of the charity and to remind her they would be there to support her, if needed, as she progresses in her career as a solicitor.
“It was really reassuring to know that this organisation exists, offering a great range of support and wellbeing services. I anticipate that it will be very helpful for many, possibly myself included (when I have finished my apprenticeship)!”
Hannah has her mum to thank for sewing the seed that blossomed into her ambition to become a lawyer. She explains: “I come from a state school and felt that ambitious careers that required difficult qualifications were out of bounds for me. I wanted to prove everyone, myself included, wrong! “I’m sure that when my mum told me I should become a lawyer because I was ‘good at arguing’ she didn’t expect me to take it so seriously, but the more I learn about the profession, the more I discover why I am actually well-suited to it!
“I love communicating, both with colleagues and clients. I love the opportunity to strive, and I love working within a team. My experience as a solicitor apprentice has really affirmed these passions; I find a great sense of achievement in the work that I do and am incredibly proud to be involved in my team member’s work!”
Hannah is very aware of the importance of self-care when working in such a high-pressure environment. She has advice for other solicitor apprentices about managing their workload and making their wellbeing a priority.
“I would definitely recommend setting boundaries,” she says. “It is extremely tempting to remain logged on late into the night when there is a busy spell, but it is important to recognise the danger of burnout and respect personal commitments – sleeping, eating, and socialising being mandatory!
“I find it helpful to make a ‘To Do’ list, which not only untangles all the messy ‘what else have I got to do?’ thoughts, but also means you get a little dopamine rush whenever you tick off a task.” She believes it is important that solicitors have a dedicated support network throughout their careers: “I think that the very existence of The Solicitors’ Charity is a reassurance to those facing hardship.”