Illness versus Personal Responsibility - What are The Lines to Cross?
April 27, 2021
Listen to this episode for Jahan Kalantar's insight on the intricacies of the legal landscape when it comes to mental health.
LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
In this episode of the High Functioning Hotspot, we have with us Jahan Kalantar. He shares with us the beginnings of his legal practice and how he began considering himself as the "little guy lawyer."
We also walk through the different scenarios where legal action and mental health are deeply intertwined and how, as a legal representative, you have to deal with a lot of more than just your own viewpoint.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:00:00] Hi everyone and welcome to the Highest Functioning Hotspot with me, Dr. Chloe Carmichael, a clinical psychologist in New York city and author of the book, Nervous Energy Harness, the Power of your Anxiety. So here on my podcast, I like to talk to high functioning people and just learn a little bit about who they are and how they got speed that way. Today's guest is really interesting. His name is Jahan Kalantar . He is in Australia where he has lived most of his life, but he's actually from Persia and he has connected in some way, his Persian heritage. He says to a desire to stand up to bullies and he has become a very successful lawyer. I actually know Jahan through the Entrepreneurs Organization for business owners, whose business makes at least a minimum revenue of a million.
[00:00:53] I'm pretty sure that Jahan has actually gone way above that. So in my interview with him, I'm going to get to ask him really about. What it's like to be a lawyer to build up that incredible practice. I know so many lawyers that, you know, work for other firms and would love to know how to build up their own practice.
[00:01:11] But also his practice has a really interesting slant, which is serious crimes and mental health. So I'm definitely going to be asking him some interesting questions about what it's like to, you know, be defending someone on mental health grounds. When in fact maybe that person actually did a really serious crime.
[00:01:32] So I'm really excited for this conversation and I hope that you enjoy it too.
[00:01:38] Hey Jahan, thank you so much for joining with me today.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:01:42] Privileged to be here. How are you, Chloe?
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:01:45] I'm great. Thank you. And I especially want to thank you for joining me. Is it four in the morning in Australia, right now?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:01:53] Eight in the morning. But you know, I did wake up at four with excitement to be here, so.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:01:59] I woke up at four excited to have you here too Jahan. So anyway, I just have to ask, so Jahan, I feel like you and I got connected through the entrepreneurs organization. Are you a member at EO?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:02:13] I am. Yeah. So I'm a member of the Sydney chapter. I run a business so I have a litigation practice here in Sydney and through EO I kind of had the opportunity to meet a lot of entrepreneurs such as yourself. And it was really cool to connect with someone all the way in the States in an era where we can't even fly and see one another. It's pretty cool. What EO has done to bring everyone together?
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:02:35] Yeah, I totally agree. So you're kind of an unusual situation because you're a lawyer. And then you opened up like a one man shop, and then you ended up clearing over a million dollars a year in revenue, which is the cutoff for EO of minimums.
[00:02:54] And I'll share with you. I have a fair amount of lawyers in my practice, and a lot of them have a fantasy about going out on their own and just getting away from big law. You know, but they're always like, how do I get clients? How do I make it happen? So what's the inside track, Jahan, how would you do it?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:03:14] That's a really good question. And it's, it's so funny that you say that because. The the higher you move up in the hierarchy, the less real law that you do. It's just one of those weird things where you, you develop a really tight skill set of being able to provide these pretty cool legal techniques and skills, and you just don't get to provide them anymore.
[00:03:34] You got to oversee junior staff and kind of build up the practice around you. I think that's the tip that I would give to anyone. You've got to be authentic and you've got to speak with your voice, and that will resonate very well with a certain percentage of the population. So I'm not everyone's lawyer for everything.
[00:03:54] I've got a very specific niche that I am pretty, pretty good at. And through that and sort of the community rallying around that niche. I've managed to build that practice.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:04:04] Now, your niece was kind of interesting too. Okay. So I checked this out on your website and it says that your niche is serious crimes and mental health. So is that like an overlap or those two distinct areas? What does that mean?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:04:19] Yeah, it was a fantastic question. So , I've got the moniker or the sobriquet of being the little guy, lawyer, which is sort of what I specialize in. So I made a decision when I went out on my own that I would pretty much, I found it very difficult to act.
[00:04:33] On behalf of parties that have more power. So I don't think that an insurance company per se needs yet another lawyer on their payroll, but I think there's a lot of people in you know, pretty dire situations who could use someone who knows the law and is prepared to go to bat for them. And it started out sort of with you know, little petty sort of when I first started in law, I never thought I would be practicing in crime.
[00:04:57] Never thought I'd be practicing in mental health but you don't pick your practice. Your practice picks you. And I got a few cases. I did fairly well in them. And recently we've represented some really high profile cases, including people accused of acts of terrorism you know, really serious sort of stuff.
[00:05:13] And I'd be really keen to hear your thoughts on this because obviously, you know, much more about the mind than I do, but I have found in my practice, there is a huge overlap and enormous overlap between mental health issues. Be those psychosocial in nature. And the, and the committing of crimes you know, crimes are generally something that comes from someone that has some kind of pathology behind it. And if not a pathology, then some really tough, so psychosocial circumstances.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:05:43] Well, that's a really interesting question, Jahan from the mental health standpoint. So, you know, my upcoming book, Nervous Energy Harness, the Power of your Anxiety focuses on. I say that every chance I get aNervous Energy Harness, the Power of your Anxiety.
[00:05:59] Super excited by the way, too. I just got a very positive review from Pub, from Publishers Weekly. So that's awesome. But the reason I'm bringing it up now is because, you know, you were talking about what I, as a psychologist referred to basically as a person's level of functioning and you were linking that, you know, to their mental health.
[00:06:18] So when we talk about mental health, we can talk about someone who's very high functioning. Like my show that high functioning hotspot mostly geared towards high functioning people you know, or lower functioning, meaning people that are really unable to function in society, according to their society's norms.
[00:06:36] And part of that does include being able to understand and abide by the law. But, but it's an interesting question and sometimes a controversy, because for example, suppose a person likes marijuana. Well, if marijuana happens to be illegal, where you live, then your functioning could be evaluated differently as a illegal drug user.
[00:07:04] Versus if you live in the seam, you know, you're using the same drug, but you're just living in a different place. So, you know, you're, you're raising a really interesting question about the way that psychologists and mental health figure in, when it comes to the law. You know, personally, I, I do think that a willingness to recognize and abide by the law for the most part, you know, is important.
[00:07:28] I mean, we've all. You know, gone a few miles over the speed limit here and there. Right. But when it comes to, as you said, serious crimes, you know, crimes that are putting other people in danger, you know, that's when psychologists tend to, you know, raise the red flag. So, but, but your practice, you know, again, I just think it's so interesting.
[00:07:49] Serious crime and mental health. So does that mean I'm going to give you the gears a little bit here. I'm going to give you a hard time, but it's all in good fun. Does that mean that you. Like help people to get out of the consequences of crimes because you help them to claim an insanity defense or what exactly is the overlap.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:08:08] Sure. Sure. Look our legal systems a little bit different to, to yours. And essentially there's what you've said is one potential modality to get out of consequence. I think first things first 80% of matters resolve in some sort of. Guilty plea. And if you've done the wrong thing, your lawyer's job is not to get you out of trouble for doing the wrong thing.
[00:08:31] It's to tell your story and make sure that you're charged for the things that you did, rather, the things that they said that you did. And how much they can groove. When, when we talk about serious crime, generally speaking, the matters that I do are things that are done on indictment, which means that they're in the district court and above.
[00:08:47] So I generally run a bit of a trial practice and that I'll take matters. That will be going to trial usually before a judge or jury rather than stuff that's done in the local court. And, and that's what I mean when I say serious crimes it's matters that carry. Fairly long prison sentence if they, if they do the wrong thing in terms of mental health we do do some, there is an overlap in terms of you know, yes, running an insanity defense is absolutely a thing we've done it or fitness to plead.
[00:09:15] We do a lot of that sort of stuff as well. But when I talk about mental health, the primary kind of mental health work that I do is I advocate on behalf of people who are kept or who are The correct word is assessable person. So it's someone who's kept in a mental health facility and may not believe that they need to be there.
[00:09:33] And It's, it's a really interesting area of the law because they may be receiving it. You know, they've got all this information from, you know, doctors and their families and all this collateral history that says that they're unwell and they believe they're not unwell. And they have a right to have a lawyer who believes that they're not unwell.
[00:09:51] And so I do a fair bit of that type of mental health advocacy where I appear in, you know, hospital type settings or petition a various government agencies saying, look, this person's actually got this issue or this problem and that they need to be treated in this way.
[00:10:09] And it's, it's one of my favorite areas of the law because there are people there who've done really, nothing wrong and nothing to deserve it. They've got an illness. And when you put an illness you're entitled to be treated with dignity, compassion, and respect a little bit more than if you've done the wrong thing.
[00:10:25] If you've done the wrong thing and you're trying to wiggle out of it and your lawyers should not play favorites and we never do openly, but inside you maybe it's maybe it's a little bit easier to be nicer to this group of people.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:10:35] Well, just to push back a little bit though, I mean, I think personally that if someone has a mental illness, That would say, cause them to be prone to, you know, irrational violence or something like that.
[00:10:52] And then they choose not to take their medication and then they end up having a violent episode. I personally and I'm not really speaking as a psychologist here. It's more just my opinion, because I don't testify as an expert witness and I only work with high functioning people. So I'm kind of out of the area of people that would be having, you know, violent outbursts in the first place.
[00:11:16] But I mean, I do understand that I have compassion that if someone has an illness that caused them, you know, to maybe. Have a, have a, have a delusion that someone was coming after them and that they had to act out violently that we wouldn't treat that person the same as we would someone that just went out and maliciously bad or just someone.
[00:11:35] But on the other hand, if you know that you have this mental problem that causes you to act out violently it's happened before, and then you choose not to take your medication and then you have a violent outburst. Don't you think that at a certain level, a person has to become responsible for their choices?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:11:56] There is absolutely a very and what you've said is absolutely valid. There's absolutely this important dichotomy between illness and personal responsibility. The flip side of it is if you don't think you're sick and you think these pills are poisoning you, you've got paranoia or some illusions, you've got a serious disturbance of mood.
[00:12:16] You've got a belief system that's incorrect. For whatever reason. I mean, when you sit with someone and you ask them this, I mean, I've asked this question, why would you self cease your medication? You know that you get sick. And he goes, actually I don't know that I get sick. I'm not sick. People are poisoning me by giving me this stuff.
[00:12:36] You start to really kind of. Sit back and go, well, what would I do if I was in this situation? If I, if I really believed everyone around me was, you know, out to get me and there's, they're giving me this stuff, would I behave in the same way now? It's not rational and objectively. And I mean, we live in an objective and a subjective reality and often the subjective reality.
[00:12:58] You can be as bizarre as you want. It's the objective reality that we need to deal with. And it's very, very hard. Sometimes when you've got these people, who've done these, you know, fairly awful things and you have to stand before a court and say, they're not a bad person. They've, they've done a bad thing.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:13:15] I guess. I just, maybe it's the American in me. But I tend to link rights and responsibilities. So I personally feel like if someone can't be responsible for their behavior, then they have to surrender a certain amount of their rights to be independent and perform whatever behaviors they judge is, you know, appropriate or okay.
[00:13:35] If they can't ultimately be responsible for those behaviors. But again, I, you know, just. You know, the American in me, but, or maybe just different perspectives, but I'm curious if you've ever had a situation Jahan, where you were in or Johanna were where you were in like an ethical conflict yourself, like where you said to yourself, like, geez, like this person just, you know, committed this terribly violent crime and I feel like I could say the right words to the judge and jury and give him the right to go free, that he gets to now go out again. And he may decide again that his meds are bad for him. And he may again, violently assault people. does, is that ever a quandary for you?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:14:22] Yeah. I mean, I wish that we lived in a Grisham novel and I wish I was as persuasive as a character on a TV show.
[00:14:30] But the reality of the situation is that people are not stupid, particularly judges and juries, and there is no amount of court , that's going to convince them that if they believe someone is a person who's done the wrong thing, that they shouldn't be punished for it. When I was younger, I definitely wrestled more with the ethical aspects of it.
[00:14:51]And I can tell you a little story if you like kind of like illustrate that. But when I was, when I was a fairly young lawyer I was retained to appear in a matter] where there was an assault that took place between these two families. And the families in question were from an ethnic background that believed in witchcraft and sorcery.
[00:15:12] And I know nothing about that sort of stuff, but essentially what my client said is I acted in self-defense. This person was about to cast this spell on me. And if I didn't hit her and stop her from casting that spell, there'd be these awful consequences for me. And you're a lawyer you're bound by your instructions.
[00:15:29] So if your client tells you, that's what you've got to ask and talk about, then that's what you're going to ask and talk about. Even though in my mind, I thought it was the most ludicrous nonsense that has ever been said, but it's my job to put forward my client's case. And so we've got the victim in cross examination.
[00:15:44] This is a woman who's been punched in the side of the head you know, and in a fairly severe, in my opinion, quite a severe attack, none of the, by another woman. So by another woman and in a fairly severe attack if unprovoked, so I'm, cross-examining her nd I asked her, listen you know you have intimate knowledge of witchcraft, don't you?
[00:16:04] And I expect the answer to be like, no, what are you talking about? And she goes, yes, I do. Okay. All right. Didn't expect that. And and in your knowledge of witchcraft, you, you have an arsenal of offensive type spells
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:16:16] Good word arsenal because you're setting up nice.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:16:20] Okay. And then I, and then I asked you know is this.
[00:16:25] You were about to cast the spell on my client. And I was very impressed with the, and she goes, yes, I was. And I go, and the consequences of that spill would be serious. Yes, they were. So essentially my client truly believed, and this other person truly believed they had the power to cast the spell and make her infertile and, and she didn't want to be in fertile.
[00:16:47] So she punched the other person in the head and the court was looked at all the circumstances and said, well, if you genuinely believe you're going to be made in fertile, and this person has this power, you are allowed to act in self-defense. And we didn't win the case per se, but we weren't punished anywhere to the extent that I thought we'd be, because that was a genuine belief system that existed within this community.
[00:17:09] And it really made me question the narrow perspective that I have as to what is right and what is wrong and what is that my viewpoint is the only viewpoint that exists. You know, I come at things from this perspective of, you know I'm Johanna, I'm a educated lawyer who's, you know, comes from this background and has these opportunities, but not the whole world sees it that way.
[00:17:31] And I think that that case really opened my eyes to the ethics of you, , you've got to judge actions. In the context that they happen much, much more than in the context that you happened?
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:17:43] Well, that's interesting. Yeah, because in that particular scenario, the two women were both in the same cultural belief system that they both believed, you know, that the woman was essentially wielding a weapon herself.
[00:17:56]But like for example, what have I encountered. You know that very same woman who threw a punch and what if she believed that five foot, eight blonde women will make you infertile? And that was her belief system. And so she thought she could just walk up to me and clock me. Like, I don't know, I'd have a hard time just accepting that as being part of her belief system, you know.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:18:18] But I think you're right. And I, and I think that if God forbid she did that, she'd be in a world of trouble. You know, as she shouldn't be, I think that we are dealing with people at their lowest and at a really bad moment. And that's something that I see a lot off. And the stories that I hear, every single client I've had, and I've had a few that I think are probably truly evil.
[00:18:41] And I think that there's something to be said for that that there are people who will never inform them.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:18:45] What do you do in those situations? Have you ever had a client where it's like, you just feel like, as you said, like this person's evil, like, what do you do then?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:18:54] I'm grateful that they're few and far between, I can count in about almost a decade of practice, maybe three.
[00:19:00] And you do your job. You do your job ethically and according to the rules and regulations that are before you and you do what you can to help them. But it's very rare. It's actually very rare. I would say I've done thousands of cases and there's only been really two or three where I thought this person this is, this person is almost irredeemably bad.
[00:19:22] Almost. I think everyone can be redeemed, but these people come as close to the edge as you'll ever hear.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:19:26] Do you have the right to refuse to represent someone?
[00:19:31] Jahan Kalantar: [00:19:31] Great question in new South s there's, we have solicitors and barristers, solicitors are people like myself we do all of the running around outside of court, preparing of cases, interviewing the witnesses, and we do have a right to refuse.
[00:19:44]A lot of these cases happen back when I used to be a barrister. So you don't have a right to refuse as a barista if they will prepare to pay your fee. And they are you have the skillset to help them at the time. You have an obligation to take it on, which is good. It's called the cab-rank rule.
[00:19:58] And it's designed to make sure that people get a defense no matter what they're accused of.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:20:03] Hm, wow. I would struggle with that. I would really struggle with that. If I were asked to try to represent and defend someone. That, you know, I actually didn't believe, you know, she'd be defended that I thought that they should be prosecuted.
[00:20:22] You know, I guess, I mean, I guess everyone deserves a defense though. So I, to be honest, I've never really, I'm not a lawyer, so I've never thought about this one super deeply. But, but yeah, I mean, it sounds like you wrestle with some deep questions, Jahan.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:20:35] I try. And I think that the way that I see it is that, and the way the system is designed, it's better than guilty people go free than innocent people, languish in prison. And if God forbid you were falsely accused of a crime and the evidence was hearsay, conjecture and Jewish, you would want a tireless defense lawyer to protect your reputation and keep you out of it. You know, keep you out of harm's way that there are innocent people that are accused Bailey of things that they didn't do.
[00:21:01] There are overzealous prosecutors and police as there are Brazilians defense attorneys. I mean, it's when you treat the system like a game, which we shouldn't do, but a a lot of people do. You are inevitably going to get these pretty bad outcomes, but I see my response. I see my job as keeping the system accountable and making sure that people have their side of the story told with all the skills and expertise I can bring to bear.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:21:25] Yeah, I actually do have a blog. It's actually called wrongly accused. And it's about the dark side of me too. Because I have had situations that I've become aware of through my practice, where I've spoken to both men and women, right. Behind closed doors, you know, that have either perpetrated or been the victim of a false accusation of sexual harassment.
[00:21:50]And it's really sad, but I think that some women these days are actually now aware that like the believer women thing kind of gives them almost like a black male tool that they can actually threaten men with sometimes. And I've seen that happen before. So to your point, it's true that like, we can all be on the wrong side of a false accusation and we would definitely want a big strong defender in our corner. So that makes sense.
[00:22:22] Jahan Kalantar: I would love to read that blog and absolutely. I think the pendulum, I mean, the way that society runs, it's a pendulum and it always over swings. It never corrects, you know, appropriately. So for the longest time, I think really men were able to get away with pretty horrendous stuff.
[00:22:38] And women were pretty badly treated and not really given a fair shake and the pendulum has now swung. And every single time someone makes a false accusation. Every single time someone lies or uses it as a blackmail to what they are doing is that they are cheapening the accusations for everyone who really brings it forward.
[00:23:00] And this whole belief of all women, the believable, everyone thing is absolutely nonsense. In my opinion, you judge the facts as you see them in front of you and you, you test the evidence. Rigidly because once an hour, once an allegation like that is made, it's the juniors out of the bottle and you can destroy someone's reputation entirely before they even have a chance to put forward that this person is lying and this person is, you know, wrongly accusing me.
[00:23:28] So I think it's, I think it's a really interesting area. I'd love to read that blog post.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:23:32] Yeah, I'll definitely put a link to it in the show notes. Yeah. So I'm curious. Jahan, I know I just have a few more minutes left with you. So, you know, from the high functioning aspect, right. Again, I mean, you, you kind of skirted away from it.
[00:23:48] When I asked you the question before, maybe you're very modest. Sorry, I'm just going to put it back at you again. When I asked you, how is it, like, how does a person do it? You know, people ask me this about my business all the time, too. Like how did you just one day say to yourself, I want to have my own business and then you decided to open it.
[00:24:08] And the next thing you knew, you obviously had so much business that you were eligible to join EO. Now I asked you that question a moment ago, and you said, well, you know, when, when you're passionate, people can feel it. There's lots of passionate people out there that are not attracting clients to the level that you obviously are.
[00:24:27] So do you mind just sharing, like how you did it, or like maybe what a time was that you were down in the dumps and ask yourself, like, can I do this, like tell us a story about how you built this?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:24:39] No problem at all. Look, the reality was the dissatisfaction of the situation I was in working for other people was.
[00:24:48] More scary than the fear of going out and working for myself. And I took a leap of faith believing that I you know, I believed in myself and my skillset and it was to be honest, probably misplaced early on. I mean, my first month of business, I made $16 after I paid everyone and that I didn't make, and that's not including myself.
[00:25:10] So I made no money. And I remember sitting in my office going, yeah, I've really, I've really, I've really screwed the pooch. I've messed this up badly. Why did I do this? What am I doing? And it was, it was, and I used to be in banking and I did a lot of sort of banking stuff. So I thought, well, I'm going to open my own practice.
[00:25:27] And surely a lot of banking clients will come over and we'll spend time together. The reality is banks have. Functionally unlimited money to spend on the resources. They're not going to hire a brand new law firm. That's, you know, completely untested just because they, like one of the associates who's worked on their file.
[00:25:44] And so through that, I basically reached out to everyone. I could, I hustled as hard as I could. I drank so much coffee. Pretty much 98% coffee meeting after meeting, after meeting. And I started getting assigned some really, you know, low end criminal law stuff. And because I had time, I worked on those cases.
[00:26:04] As tirelessly I would have if they were, for example, the biggest bank in Australia. And when you put in effort into your work, people notice that they notice when you care. And it was really quite slow going at first. I did a lot of those types of cases then I found a niche in which a lot of kids were getting caught at music festivals with small amounts of drugs.
[00:26:27] And I found a niche to advertise to them. I was able to give them really high quality service at a really affordable price.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:26:33] Good. How did you do it? How did you advertise to them?
Jahan Kalantar: [00:26:37] I think what I did was if I'm not mistaken, this is pre-Facebook or it was right when Facebook advertising was starting.
[00:26:43] So I used to put up free legal advice. You know, if you get stopped by a police officer, you can do five things. These are your rights at a music festival. AndI caught one. I mean, I helped one. I, you know, I wonder case and that she turned out to be a chatty Cathy, and she told a bunch of her friends.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:27:00] And where did you put those things? Cause you said it was pre-Facebook. So did you just like have flyers.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:27:07] So it was, was one we would go and I would literally go and stand outside of a festival. And I think we, I think it was just when Facebook was starting to, so I think it was on Facebook, but I helped one really, really lovely young lady.
[00:27:20] And she was like I said, a chatty Cathy. She told her friends and there is only when you sell time and that's essentially what a professional sells and I'm in professional services. You don't need to, you don't need to get every hour of every day, but you need to do enough to meet your minimum worth standards.
[00:27:36] And then you need to sort of progress upwards. And in terms of. Has it been smooth sailing? Absolutely not. There have been times I've regretted my decision immensely, particularly when times are not good, like when COVID hit it was a really challenging time for our practice. The courts were closed.
[00:27:53] What good is a trial lawyer without a courtroom. It's, you know.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:27:56] That sounds like a saying or something. It's like a [00:28:00] trial lawyer without a courtroom, like a model without a runway.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:28:05] Absolutely creep without a paddle. So yeah. You know, and you, and you, you ask yourself, am I doing the right thing? You know, I've got a payroll of staff that I need to take care of I'm offices and other commitments.
[00:28:17] But I think that I think that it's always having, I have very, I, I believe in my skillset and my ability to adapt. And I think that in terms of, if there has been one attribute that has really helped me, it's adaptability, it's that you've got to roll with the punches and in my line of work, that's what happens.
[00:28:34] You'll rock your show up to court with a plan. And then it be like, okay, well now you've drawn drudge, judge bastard, and judge bastard hates you. Okay. Well, got to change my plan or, Oh, there's going to be a witness that I didn't know it was going to be their great new plan or my client is late or won't show up or is drunk or sky or something, new plant.
[00:28:51] And. You just get good at dealing with problems. You get more confident in your own ability to deal with reality, rather than reality. Getting easier. Reality never gets easier. I was misled as a child. I thought that once you finish university you get a job. It's almost like downhill and easy. And I'm sure in your practice, you must meet many people who have this false assumption.
[00:29:12] And I'm in my mid thirties down and realizing how wrong that is. You get better at handling stuff, but the stuff that you have to handle gets harder.
Dr. Chloe Carmichael: [00:29:20] Well, if you're a high functioning person, yes. That's what happens is that you end up, you know, climbing the ladder and getting more and more sophisticated assignments and things thrown your way.
[00:29:31] And that is one of the things actually that I work with. High-functioning people sometimes they'll show up to my office and. You know, for the first time in their life, they feel like they're in over their head and they don't know how to feel that way because everybody else has been feeling that way.
[00:29:44] Even like during tough exams in high school, but maybe some high functioning people could sort of get through that without too much of a, you know too much of a hustle and then suddenly they make it to say a good law firm where everybody went to Harvard and everybody's really smart. And then Ben, it's kind of a new game in town and it's, it's a fun thing for them to learn how to rise to the occasion.
[00:30:09] But you're right. Sometimes it is blood, sweat, and tears, and then a lot of satisfaction, hopefully at the end.
[00:30:15] So Jahan, it's been so much fun speaking with you. I've had the chance to ask you a lot of questions, but is there anything that I have not asked you or that you want people to know, or a website where people could find you.
Jahan Kalantar: [00:30:30] Sure. So if you want to know more about our firm the websites, executivelegal.com that I use we have offices in Australia and we just work internationally. If you want to know more about me personally And sort of the stuff that I talk about I was really lucky enough to be on TEDx in 2018.
[00:30:46] And give a talk about saying, sorry, it's kind of my expertise and that's it. www.jahankalantar.com so that's J A H A N K A L A N T A R.com. And throw me a line, always happy to discuss anything like that. In terms of if there's like a lesson or something valuable that my practice has taught me, it's that every single person you meet, no matter how awful they are on the outside or how nice they are on the outside is going through some battle. And they're going through something inside that really. If you knew it, you would give them a lot of kindness, love and care. And generally my advice to be kind to people, you never know what they're going through. No matter how put together they seem on the outside.
[00:31:21] Dr. Chloe Carmichael: Thanks, Jahan
[00:31:22] Jahan Kalantar: Pleasure.
[00:31:23]Dr. Chloe Carmichael: Well, that was so great to be able to sit with Jahan and just really ask him anything. I love that he made me feel so comfortable that I could just ask him some of the hard questions. And of course, for me as a psychologist, I have . Thoughts about the mental health defenses and you know, where mental health and personal responsibility.
[00:31:44] And in the beginning, I think it's such an interesting topic and of course every situation is different. So thank you so much for enjoying that conversation with me. And I hope that we can connect all over social media. If you go and see in the link section below, you'll see all links, say I do YouTube video logs and they write blogs for Psychology Today.
[00:32:05] I love Instagram. Facebook everywhere. And of course, made the book nervousenergybook.com. If you're looking for more of my specific tips on how to turn your anxiety into a superpower. So thank you so much for watching and I hope to see you next time.
[00:32:21]I'm excited to tell you guys about another mental health podcast that can help you to live your best life. It's called savvy psychologists and is hosted by clinical psychologist and sleep specialist Dr. Jade Woo. Every Friday she shares evidence-based research to help you get through life. Challenges she covers topics like how to say no without feeling guilty, what you can do to avoid common thinking traps and how you can settle your mind for better quality sleep.
[00:32:50] I had the pleasure of joining Savvy Psychologist recently to share my insights on nervous energy and the role that emotions play in our success. With a sympathetic ear and zero judgment savvy psychologist will help you to thrive in every area of your life. The short episodes are full of practical advice to help you be happier, healthier, and most importantly, be yourself. Find email@example.com or wherever you get your podcasts.