The Mindfulness Blog

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If It Ain't Broke, Don't Fix It

It is broke-- the legal profession, that is.

If not entirely broken, then it certainly is sick. Sick, as in, ailing. That's because the legal profession is comprised of men and women-- human beings-- and we can all use a little TLC, every once in a while. Even us lawyers.

And exactly where is that TLC supposed to come from? Well, it's not likely to come from our clients, who are caught up with their own issues or are too busy telling lawyer jokes, at our expense. So if not them, then maybe, ourselves.

More specifically, our institutions-- the law schools, the law firms, the bar associations, the court system-- all of which exist by virtue of us and our hard work. Why should our institutions bear that responsibility? Because that's where all the knowledge, and the money, and the prestige, and the power, resides.

If the institutions we created don't take care of us-- the men and women who created them-- who will? And how, exactly, can that happen? It can happen as a result of something that our political system has figured out, and uses to great effect: Normalization-- making something that is out of the ordinary, well, ordinary.

Mindfulness and meditation are important pieces of the well-being pie, and our institutions would do us all a great service-- they would to themselves a great service-- if they could find a way to normalize those practices and bring them into the everyday realm of our profession.

Neither mindfulness nor meditation are a panacea for everything that ails us, but they can both provide us with precious time-- time to sharpen our awareness, time to reflect-- time for ourselves, which in turn can benefit our institutions (See, prior post re: The Dual Bottom Line).

Maybe the legal profession ain't broke, and maybe it doesn't need to be fixed altogether, but it sure could benefit from a little TLC, and focusing on lawyer well-being would be a great place to start!


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