Lawyer Wellness: Shifts That Can Help Combat Depression

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Lawyer Wellness: Shifts That Can Help Combat Depression

The legal profession has one of the highest rates of depression with an estimated 28 percent of lawyers suffering. Add to that the season and generally cooler weather (in some areas, frigid) and down feelings can prove to be too much.  For many, the strategies noted below for attorneys can seem easier said than done, but here are some things to do to combat depression symptoms.

  • Avoid rumination. Excessively ruminating on negative events or worries can increase stress and melancholy about things that haven’t happened yet or that are in the past. If you want to Depressiondecrease your symptoms of depression, try to limit the amount of time you spend ruminating on the negative to help counteract depression.
  • Practice self-empathy. Since so many lawyers are Type-A personalities obsessed with being perfect, it is easy to be a little too hard on yourself. Show yourself some self-empathy by understanding that you’re only human so you will eventually make mistakes.
  • Recognize common humanity. When things go wrong, it’s easy to ask “Why is this happening to me?” But it’s important to remember that you’re not the only one having this experience. Experiencing setbacks and disappointments are a common human problem. Take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone in your troubles and consider reaching out to others for mutual support.
  • Look for the bright side. Oftentimes depressive symptoms come from focusing on only the negative aspects of a situation. To combat depression, you should search for the silver lining or the bright side of things. Ask yourself, how can this negative situation eventually benefit me?

If you’re an attorney suffering from depression, it’s important to reach out for professional help but there are also some attitude shifts that can help you combat the blues. Subscribe to the Leopard Blog for discussions on wellness, diversity, law firm insights, and other relevant topics.

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