Law school is a sunk cost. However long you've been practicing is a sunk cost.
You can't get that time back. You can't get that money back.
It is gone.
It's also not a reason to keep practicing law.
Look at everything you've done.
What you've done in the past is irrelevant. If law school was a mistake, you're only making that mistake worse by staying in law.
nly prospective (future) costs are relevant to a rational decision. At any moment in time, the best thing to do depends only on current alternatives. The only things that matter are the future consequences. Past mistakes are irreleva
They say that there are a bunch of psychological factors associated with sunk cost thinking. And guess what. They're pretty much the key personality traits of a lawyer.
Loss aversion. You paid for law school. You spent 3 years there. Then you studied for the bar. Then you practiced for a few years. That is a lot of time and money. If you left the law, would you be throwing all of that away?
Personal responsibility. Law stresses ethics, which creates a higher degree of personal responsibility. You
- Framing effects, a cognitive bias where people decide on options based on whether the options are presented with positive or negative connotations; e.g. as a loss or as a gain. People tend to avoid risk when a positive frame is presented but seek risks when a negative frame is presented.
- An overoptimistic probability bias, whereby after an investment the evaluation of one's investment-reaping dividends is increased.
- The requisite of personal responsibility. Sunk cost appears to operate chiefly in those who feel a personal responsibility for the investments that are to be viewed as a sunk cost.
- The desire not to appear wasteful—"One reason why people may wish to throw good money after bad is that to stop investing would constitute an admission that the prior money was wasted."