The legal profession is a stressful one. So it’s no wonder that lawyers suffer from depression at twice the rate of the general population, which means that of the 1.2 million lawyers in the United States, 240,000 of them are clinically depressed. Not surprisingly, given the high numbers of depressed lawyers, suicide rates for attorneys are nearly 4 times higher than those of many other professions.
Between the stress and the high levels of depression, it’s no wonder that 7 out of 10 lawyers surveyed by the California Lawyers magazine would change careers if the opportunity arose. But that’s not the only solution. There are plenty of ways to reduce stress and increase happiness without leaving the profession altogether. That’s why we’re devoting a series of blog posts to exploring ways that lawyers can take control of their professional lives and make changes for the better.
So, starting next week, I’ll examine different ways to improve your law practice and your outlook to help you discover how to practice law so that you can become the happy lawyer you were meant to be. Over the next few months in this series of blog posts you’ll learn about ways to increase your happiness and career satisfaction. We’ll explore a variety ways to improve your law practice, including:
- Making your work environment more ergonomic
- Creating a peaceful, calming work environment
- Creating a more cost-effective practice
- Streamlining your work processes
- Practicing law on your terms
- Tweaking your practice to make it more enjoyable
- Changing your career track
- Carefully choosing your clients
- Change your mindset
- Finding the right balance between work and the rest of your life
- Creating a mobile practice
- Taking control of your schedule
- Knowing when to hire help
- Taking advantage of technology
- Refraining from taking on too much.
Next week, in the first installment of this series, we’ll focus on practicing law on your own terms. You’ll discover how other lawyers are increasing their flexibility and mobility and practicing without boundaries, allowing them to deliver legal services to clients using new tools and technologies. So tune in next week and in the meantime, if you haven’t yet seen our “Happy Lawyer” infographic, take a look at it now and let us know if you have any other ideas about how lawyers can improve their lives.