So many people don’t actually think that the emotional toll of the legal matter or the stress that they’re going through, will impact the outcome.
While your emotional state has a personal toll, it also plays out throughout the whole legal matter and the outcome.
There’s a little saying that I’ve sort of adopted for myself; high emotion = low intelligence. When you have high emotions, like stress and anger, you have a reduced ability to think and make good decisions.
So much of dealing with your legal matter can be about your emotional regulation. We don’t want you to be feeding a drama, or feeding a conflict, and getting into a highly emotional state.
There’s more and more brain science coming out which supports this, that when you’re in a stress response (fight, flight or freeze) your brain and your decision-making capacity actually doesn’t work well.
Also, when you’re triggered, it can take 20 minutes to half an hour to even get the brain to come back down, to start being able to work again.
This is why quite often I’m saying that a single day of mediating may not be the best thing for parties, particularly women. A full day of mediation or court will put you under such stress, with everyone saying you’ve got to resolve it that day. Yet your brain doesn’t have the time to actually go through all the information, and weigh your options, and make a decision that’s actually from a less emotive place.
We don’t want to be making decisions from stress and fear. We actually want to be making decisions that are best for us, and that are in line with all our values and what we actually want.
How can we actually keep in mind what we truly want when we’re stressed and angry?
When you’re stressed and angry, you’re just defensive and wanting to hurt others, and hide, and protect yourself, which is not the best outcome. Hence, high emotion = low intelligence.
The way your emotions play out do impact your legal matter. Being able to understand this, being able to regulate yourself, and being able to manage the strategy of the legal matter is key. Having a solicitor that actually supports the management of your emotional state, to make sure that strategically you can make your best decisions, will have significant impact on the overall outcome.
I help women within Legally Wise Women, firstly, to have the resources and understanding of good decision-making, good negotiation skills, and being able to find and hire the right lawyer. But then how to also communicate with the lawyer to make sure that these strategies come into play and that the lawyer also understands what your emotional state is and what is best for you.
Let’s make 2021 a better year for legal outcomes for women, because it’s really about time that women start getting good outcomes for themselves.