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Positive Psychology for Lawyers Posts

National Task Force Report - The Path to Lawyer Well-Being



Creating a Movement To Improve Well-Being in the Legal Profession

August 14, 2017

Enclosed is a copy of The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Change from the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being. The Task Force was conceptualized and initiated by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP), the National Organization of Bar Counsel (NOBC), and the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers (APRL). It is a collection of entities within and outside the ABA that was created in August 2016. Its participating entities currently include the following: ABA CoLAP; ABA Standing Committee on Professionalism; ABA Center for Professional Responsibility; ABA Young Lawyers Division; ABA Law Practice Division Attorney Wellbeing Committee; The National Organization of Bar Counsel; Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers; National Conference of Chief Justices; and National Conference of Bar Examiners. Additionally, CoLAP was a co-sponsor of the 2016 ABA CoLAP and Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation’s study of mental health and substance use disorders among lawyers and of the 2016 Survey of Law Student Well-Being.

To be a good lawyer, one has to be a healthy lawyer. Sadly, our profession is falling short when it comes to well-being. The two studies referenced above reveal that too many lawyers and law students experience chronic stress and high rates of depression and substance use. These ndings are incompatible with a sustainable legal profession, and they raise troubling implications for many lawyers’ basic competence. This research suggests that the current state of lawyers’ health cannot support a profession dedicated to client service and dependent on the public trust.  

Read the Full Article (PDF)

The Prevalence of Substance Use and Other Mental Health Concerns Among American Attorneys

Original Research by
by Patrick R. Krill, JD, LLM, Ryan Johnson, MA, and Linda Albert, MSSW 

Objectives: Rates of substance use and other mental health concerns among attorneys are relatively unknown, despite the potential for harm that attorney impairment poses to the struggling individuals themselves, and to our communities, government, economy, and society. This study measured the prevalence of these concerns among licensed attorneys, their utilization of treatment services, and what barriers existed between them and the services they may need. Methods: A sample of 12,825 licensed, employed attorneys com- pleted surveys, assessing alcohol use, drug use, and symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress.

Read the full article at The Journal of Addiction Medicine

Yoga for Lawyers - the Book, Published

My new book is out!

"Yoga for Lawyers: Mind-Body Techniques to Feel Better All the Time" is a book written by lawyers for lawyers. With more than 20 million people practicing yoga in the United States, the authors suggest that yoga is the perfect exercise to help lawyers de-stress every day, throughout the day, in very little time.

Read the full press release.