How to Proactively Encourage Attorney Well-Being (Before It’s a Problem)

The month of May falls under Mental Health Awareness Month. To commemorate the fact, you can find a myriad of posts about the importance of lawyer health available on the internet. The fact that law firms should prioritize mental health isn’t an entirely new concept. It’s been established for a long time that the pressures of the law profession could take a heavy toll on lawyers through stress and depression, as well as burnout and addiction disorders.

It’s good to know that legal firms are beginning to offer resources for dealing issues with mental health. It’s not an easy task to transform the way things are done in an industry that’s inherently tradition and where working incredibly lengthy hours was a symbol of respect for a long time. That means the majority of the tools for managing health issues for attorneys are only that are only used when an attorney feels that managing their anxiety has become too difficult.

It’s perhaps the most significant obstacle lawyers face when it comes to focusing on their psychological health. mental health isn’t a topic to be addressed when it’s essential for their professional careers. However, mental health, just like physical wellness, is concerned with preventative care. Here are some suggestions for increasing participation in wellness as well as mental health-related initiatives to every lawyer in the firm.

Changes in Firm The Culture

Everyone should be aware of the progress made in recent times by law firms and the legal sector. More resources are available than ever before to help attorneys keep their health in check. Many firms have also done impressive work in decreasing the stigma of seeking treatments for anxiety, depression as well as substance abuse.

However, lots of work needs to be done. A lot of this has nothing to do with the availability of sources in place that attorneys might or may not utilize and more to do the creation of a culture where attorneys are comfortable asking for help when they need it (or ideal, when it’s not required).

Three ideas comprise:

  • Reducing the importance of the billable hourYou likely expected this. However, putting less emphasis on the billable hour does not necessarily mean “don’t think about profit.” Instead, make it a point to encourage employees to seek counseling and help even if that takes a couple of hours otherwise billable. While it’s an ethical decision your business will gain in retaining talented employees instead of losing the top employees to transfers or burnout. The company could also promote volunteer work that will benefit the company in its own right and offers attorneys the pleasure that they can help someone in need. It could reduce the effects of burning out.
  • Promote wellness programs:If you offer mental health assistance for attorneys in your firm, you should thank them. Consider actively encouraging their the participation of your employees. Make it clear that health and wellness aren’t just something reserved for “struggling” lawyers. Similar to your physical health, preventing is the initial step towards being mentally fit and healthy. You can consider a corporate-wide “mental wellness day” or gathering that concentrates on the mental well-being. Create a culture of non-judgment that is open to discussion about the mental health.
  • Determine participation levels and the results:Are attorneys using the services for mental health that the company is using? If nobody is taking advantage of the resources, there’s not a reason to have it. Take note of reminders that ensuring that the pressures of work is valued and seen positively and not as a thing that attorneys can’t handle. it. If you find that it’s not effective modify the method. But don’t eliminate the system completely. Talk openly with colleagues. What are their goals and want to do to remain fit? It’s not always that simple. For instance, an expectation that everybody will take an hour of lunch, could be a big help to raising morale and improving mental wellbeing.

Do you need more information?

If you’re new to the topic of mental health and wellbeing in the legal industry, FindLaw has resources for businesses looking to adopt the drug and mental health policy. Attorneys who are solely themselves have resources to help you to handle depression, anxiety as well as burnout. with self-assessments anonymously you can complete to begin considering your own mental well-being.

The law firm’s American Bar Association has an initiative plan for addressing mental health issues in the workplace.

Be careful of your health.

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