10 Happy Tips for Lawyers
"Being a happiness guru, as The Careerist calls me, is hard work. My years as a labor lawyer battling Teamsters was easy in comparison. So was fighting my way up the corporate ladder at Coca-Cola Enterprises. But since I started working with Martin Seligman of the University of Pennsylvania, the world famous expert on the science of well-being, things have gotten really tough. All people want from me now is the secret to happiness.
My lawyer friends sometimes ridicule me about my new vocation ("Hey, are we playing golf today or searching for truth and meaning?"). But they also want to learn about well-being. So do a growing number of law schools, law firms, and legal departments. The demand for answers (I would say cries for help, but everybody knows there’s no crying in law) is enormous. Everyone wants to know if happiness and law can coexist.
They have good reason for asking. Lawyers, as a group, are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, alcoholism and drug abuse, and a host of other psychological and emotional disorders than any other occupational group. These facts seems unfathomable, given the relatively high social standing, affluence, and educational attainment of lawyers — factors that correlate with well-being in most careers. But the facts, as we like to say, are the facts.
So, at the risk of sounding trite while compressing centuries of thought and research into a list, here are ten ideas for greater well-being in law."
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