I am the founding attorney of Bell Legal & Consulting Firm. I opened my corporate and IP law firm during the pandemic 5 years after graduating from Emory Law school and it has been the best decision I could have made. I knew in law school that I didn't want to waste years of my life working at a job where I wasn't happy. and I wasn't growing. I also knew I wanted to build something of my own where I could use my legal and business knowledge to help entrepreneurs, small businesses and startups. After working for other companies and firms and never really feeling valued for the time and work I put in, I decided I could be putting in that same effort into my own business and I made the leap.
What were the biggest initial hurdles and how did you overcome them?
The biggest initial hurdle for myself was fear. I had to get comfortable with uncertainty. Fear of failing is one of the biggest obstacles stopping us from living the life of our dreams. I wasn't sure if I would be successful running my own law firm, but I knew I had to try or I would always wonder "what if". Building a solid plan and sticking to it and always keeping in my mind how far I want to go helped me to build the faith I needed to make the leap.
What books are you currently reading?
I'm currently reading "Becoming" by Michelle Obama, and "Lean In" by Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook.
Did you ever deal with contention from your family and friends concerning your pursuits?
How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight?
I'm fortunate to have friends and family that have been supportive and encouraging since the beginning and who know me so well that they knew I wouldn't fail. For those who expressed doubt about my desire to open my own legal practice based on their own fears, I learned to tune it out and remember that I'm not like anyone else and everyone has their own unique journey. But I'm always willing to learn from someone else's experiences.
What would you say was the single most influential factor in your success?
Before work ethic, ingenuity, and even learning business skills, you have to have faith in yourself and your ability to accomplish whatever you want to accomplish. The single most influential factor in my success has been my belief in myself and that there is a greater purpose for my life.
What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started?
I initially started my law firm back in 2018 but decided to join another law firm as an associate out of fear. I wish I would have known back then that it would work out and that I would enjoy a flexible life working from home doing what I love-helping entrepreneurs and businesses. I only regret not starting sooner.
What advice would you give to an upcoming youth or talents locally and internationally?
I would advise upcoming youth to learn as much as they can about as much as they can, although college may not be for everybody, education is still the key to success. Be willing and able to learn. I would advise them to explore different opportunities and to not be afraid to reach out to people they admire to learn about what they do and how they got to where they are. I would advise them to ask questions, to develop skills in business and finance, and to always be willing to grow and evolve.
Arlaysia (Lacy) Bell, Esq.
Bell Legal & Consulting Firm
3550 Peachtree Road NE 21st floor #16 Atlanta, GA, 30326
Office Phone: (678) 824-4239