I'm off for a five day(Wed-Fri, then Thur-Fri next week) mediation course. It's priced for people who want to become paid mediators, which sucks, because I'm doing it to volunteer for a mediation organization that provides free services to indigent clients who need help resolving everything from Landlord/tenant to commercial disputes to domestic cases, but what the heck, pay up with a smile.
But after all that money and time, I may find that I'm unsuited to be a mediator. The course material suggests that lawyers are the hardest to train, because we are by nature advocates, and many of us came into law because of a personal need to right injustices and protect others. That's not a mediator's job, and a rethinking is necessary.
So we'll see. But I'm a huge fan of mediation: my skill set/experience is mostly in negotiation, where, ultimately, it's just about money, but Pal Nancy and I engaged in a true mediation of our own lamentable divorce and lo, 20-something years later, we're best friends (or she's mine; her results may differ). If I can offer that opportunity to others, it sounds like something I'd enjoy doing.
And who knows? It might make me a better real estate salesman. In any event, I intend to deduct the program's cost as a business expense, and if the IRS doesn't like it we'll talk.