2020 has been a doozy of a year. Pro bono and public-interest lawyers normally are stretched thin due to the challenging nature of the work they do and the limited resources they have to support their work. Many in the public-interest community experience secondary trauma when they are indirectly exposed to the traumas that their clients experience. This can be a complicated situation to navigate even under normal circumstances. This year, the challenges of pro bono and public-interest work are amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic.
To help, we have signed on to to the ABA Lawyer Well-Being Pledge and are offering opportunities for our members to connect and de-stress, as well as resources, tips, and informative articles for people who want to learn more about how to stay well while navigating a stressful profession.
Over the past year, we have held yoga events, alternative happy hours, fielded teams for 5K runs and walks, and held virtual networking events aimed at helping lawyers connect. In addition, we’ve shared useful information across our social media platforms and participated in the ABA’s Well-Being Pledge Member Virtual Workshop Day.
Recently, we took part in Lawyer Well-Being Week, a nationwide awareness campaign focusing on lawyer well-being. Throughout the week, we shared content related to many facets of well-being. While we often think of well-being in terms of only physical and mental health, last week encouraged followers to think beyond the black and white and explore the many other facets of wellness, such as spiritual well-being, intellectual well-being, social well-being, and emotional well-being.
If you missed our posts on social media from last week, we’ve summarized them below. And, because well-being is a 24/7/365 endeavor, check back on our social media channels throughout the year for more information and wellness tips. You can find us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
- Monday: Physical Well-Being. Participants were encouraged to do their virtual meetings while standing up and/or walking around.
- Tuesday: Spiritual Well-Being. Participants were encouraged to identify traits they value and how to honor those in their lives using this worksheet.
- Wednesday: Intellectual Well-Being. Participants were encouraged to use this worksheet to identify strengths within themselves and others and how to use these strengths to achieve their goals.
- Thursday: Social Well-Being. Participants were encouraged to write someone in their life a gratitude letter and either read it aloud to them or mail it to them. If you do this, share a photo of yourself on social media with your letter!
- Friday: Emotional Well-Being. Participants were encouraged to participate in a two-minute stress relief challenge using this worksheet.
If you are in need of mental health or wellness help for yourself or a colleague, visit the D.C. Bar’s Lawyer Assistance Program website here.