Mild OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) can be a plus for lawyers. That's especially the situation since the work involves close attention to details and the soundness of arguments. You keep checking. However, OCD can become an incapacitating syndrome, as it did for lawyer Susan Richman.
Richman's ordeal began when she found a mouse in her apartment. Eventually she was investing daily about 8 hours "detoxing" the place. Here she is featured in Huffington Post.
In polite society most people won't tell you. They will just distance themselves. In professional life, clients and even vendors will simply flee, without the real explanation.
Several weeks ago, I bumped up against a case of OCD. The personal injury lawyer, much like Bill Marler at Marler Clark, wanted to "own" a category within a certain niche in the law. The Marler Clark firm might be said to "own" foodborne diseases. I agreed to assist this lawyer whose vision was to be the dominant national brandname in one kind of medical malpractive. The first focus was his website.
Sweet Jesus, save us from lawyers with OCD. Within about an hour of the agreement, there was a flood of emails. There were other digital communications via another kind of platform. There were several calls. There were continual changes in the direction of the strategy and the tactics. There was much intense feedback on the material I produced.
Thinking like a lawyer, within about 36 hours I figured out a way to exit the relationship. I contended a breach of contract, itemized the cost of tasks done, and offered to return what was left from the deposit on the assignment. I got away. Flashbacks from that experience still scare me.
Did I dare suggest to him that he had OCD? It would have served no useful purpose. He assumed he is taking care of business, with more attention to details than lesser lawyers. Should state bar associations be on the lookout for OCD, just as they do for substance abuse and bipolar conditions? That might be overdue.