14 Books for Healthy and Successful Lawyers

Throughout your entire legal career, it's essential to keep learning. Whether it's tools of argument, making your case, or living a more balanced lifestyle, there is a book that can help guide you.

Lawyers, especially those in their first year of practice, often struggle with finding time to read. Reviewing books before they enter the practice can help them avoid pitfalls and stay on track. Whether it's learning to manage stress, fight cases more effectively, or build up a solo practice, there is much to be learned from books.

But it's not only important to read at the start of a lawyer's career. It's necessary throughout the entirety of your career to continue education and stay on top of legal trends. As we've seen in the past decade, the whole legal landscape has pivoted to embracing digital marketing. Even experienced lawyers have had to brush up on their business knowledge.

This list of 14 books below is worth the read whether you're in your first or 30th year of practicing law.

Books Every Lawyer Should Read

The Happy Lawyer

The Happy Lawyer explores the reasons behind high discontentment among attorneys. Many law students dream of becoming successful lawyers, yet their joy falls short once reality of working at a law firm hits. This book encourages getting to know yourself and customizing your career accordingly. It provides actionable and realistic advice to create a life you love.

The Game Changing Attorney

The Game Changing Attorney teaches you how to stand out as a leader in the legal profession. How do you attract quality clients in a fiercely competitive field? There are over 1.3 million lawyers in America alone. The Game Changing Attorney provides expert marketing advice and provides you the power to transform your law practice.

The Small Firm Roadmap

The team from Lawyerist collaborated on The Small Law Firm Roadmap to support lawyers in transitioning to the new digital landscape. In order to stand out among the competition, attorneys need to understand marketing or hire an expert. The Small Law Firm Roadmap helps clarify your goals and learn how to start, manage, and grow a successful law firm.

Stories from Trailblazing Women Lawyers

Stories from Trailblazing Women Lawyers is a captivating read that highlights how women broke the glass ceiling in law. In the 1950s only a few women were admitted into law schools each year.

Even in the 70s women were being discriminated against in higher education. Award-winning legal historian Jill Norgren tells the oral histories of multiple women and illustrates how they fought for access to education and career equality.

The Anxious Lawyer

There are not many books for lawyers on mental health, but The Anxious Lawyer is a great one. It is an introduction into meditation and mindfulness for attorneys. It provides eight-weeks of guided mindfulness and meditation practices.

It is full of science backed strategies to help lawyers alleviate anxiety and focus. The goal after finishing the eight weeks is to achieve a healthy work life balance. You'll also gain a better understanding of everyday stressors.

Stop Putting Out Fires: Building a More Efficient and Profitable Law Practice

Stop Putting Out Fires is written by Jeremy Richter, host of Lawyerpreneur. The book is meant to help lawyers streamline their practices and get organized. The outcome being happier clients, better results, and more money.

How to Win Friends and Influence People

This book covers how to go after whatever you want and achieve it. Some examples of what you'll learn include:

  • Never criticize and always be polite
  • Offer sincere appreciation
  • Remember names
  • Make the other person feel important
  • Let others do most of the talking

These are just a few talking points, and there is much more to learn by reading the book. It teaches how to make people like you and persuade them to your thinking, which can undoubtedly be helpful for attorneys.

Atomic Habits

Atomic Habits provides practical advice on making tiny changes to your daily routine that add significant results. It’s not about becoming perfect, but 1% better every day which adds up to exponential results. This book focuses both on forming new healthy habits and breaking bad ones to become the best version of yourself.

The Attorneys Guide to Personal and Financial Freedom

Legal Systems Expect, Richard James, wrote the Attorney's Guide to Personal and Financial Freedom. He is also the founder of Partner's Club, a private mastermind group for legal professionals. His book teaches attorneys how to put systems in place to streamline, scale, and save.

The Introverted Lawyer

As a lawyer, being extroverted can certainly have its perks. Law school is full of debates and rewards students who speak up. This book discusses the differences between introversion, shyness, and social anxiety. It provides tangible steps for lawyers to play on their strengths and amplify their voice.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a time tested book that was first written in 1989. One of the key principles is identifying your "true north" or guiding principles that inform your decision making process. The phrase "abundance mindset" has become widely popular, and many people don't realize Covey coined that phrase.

The seven habits of highly effective people include:

  • Being proactive
  • Focusing on results
  • Prioritize most important tasks first
  • Pursuing solutions
  • Understanding others
  • Seeking synergy
  • Increasing personal motivation

The book dives into each of these bullet points in much more detail. If you're ambitious and ready to make an impact in the legal industry, read this book.

Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges

Bryan A Garner and Antonin Scalia co-authored this book in 2008. It presents essential information about judicial persuasions that are useful for litigators no matter what phase of their careers they are in. It explains the art of brief writing, particularly what to include and omit. It also highlights strategies to win arguments.

The Tools of Argument: How the Best Lawyers Think, Argue, and Win

This book makes you think critically and increases your foundational legal knowledge. It presents powerful tools of argument to win cases. After reading it, you'll feel more confident and empowered in the courtroom with plenty of new strategies in your tool belt.

Shoe Dog

Shoe Dog is written by Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, a global company that sells athletic gear. While at first glance, this might not seem like a book for lawyers there is a clear correlation. Starting a law firm is similar to any bootstrap business in many ways.

Shoe Dog provides valuable insight and strategy into building a successful business. While you likely are not trying to be known on such a large scale, understanding Knights business practice can only help.

Making reading fun: Audible & book clubs

We know you already have a million items on your plate. If you don't have time to read, try listening to Audibles when driving to work, doing the dishes, or going for a walk.

If you're going to try and read the traditional way, perhaps set a timer for thirty minutes every day. While this might seem like a lot of time, most people spend well over that scrolling social media. It always feels good to take your eyes off the screen and gain some knowledge.

An even better solution could be to start an optional office book club. It would be a great way to educate staff, boost company morale, and spark interesting conversation amongst coworkers. A reasonable goal might be one book per month. At the end of the month you have a meeting where everyone can discuss the takeaways.