Why do lawyers need mindfulness & meditation?

My law practice can get pretty hectic sometimes, what with the demands of the job, demands of clients and demands from my working peers. Mindfulness and meditation help me create a little distance from all the demands that come at me during the workday, and enable me to respond with clarity and focus.
-- Karen M., attorney
Because we lawyers make a living by using our minds, and affording clients access to our minds.A lawyer’s mind is his/her greatest asset and should be treated with care—both by ourselves and by the institutions that otherwise comprise the legal profession. According to multiple academic and scientific studies, lawyers are at a statistically higher risk to suffer from excessive stress, debilitating anxiety, chronic depression, and drug or alcohol dependency.As individuals, both mental and emotional fitness are of tantamount importance to our personal lives and our professional careers. On an institutional level, the costs associated with recruiting, training and retaining the brightest minds are astronomical. The traditional metric of I.Q. is rapidly being matched or exceeded by E.Q., as the legal world becomes even more competitive and relationship-based than was the case in the past.

Making time for one’s self in the midst of the daily maelstrom that the practice of law has become, is of critical importance for us, individually. Institutionally, the recognition of individual needs and creation of programs and policies to address those needs, can be the difference between success and failure.

The normalization of mindfulness and meditation in Western business has already taken root in many segments of the broader corporate world—it’s time for the legal world to catch up and/or take the lead.

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