Love, and the Practice of Law
your life scale is tipping heavily toward work and stress and away from play
and relaxation, the Colorado Lawyer Assistance Program may be able to help.
By BARBARA EZYK, Esq.
Finding balance in our personal and professional
lives is a challenge for busy professionals, but it is particularly difficult
in the high-stress, fast-paced and, at times, isolating, practice of law. Competition,
long hours, and high expectations meet us on a daily basis. The demands of
work, family, and friends can slip out of balance before we know it.
We know what we are “suppose” to be doing: taking care of ourselves and setting aside
time for our important personal relationships. However, demanding schedules,
deadlines, preparation for trial, and the relentless interruption of phones and
email can become overwhelming, leaving little time and energy for friends,
family, and the leisure parts of life. When work infringes on these important activities,
it can result in stress, insomnia, anxiety, anger, depression, or
overindulgence in alcohol and inappropriate use of drugs.
The truth is that scheduling time to relax and
play will not only increase your health and overall well-being, it will also make
you a better lawyer.
How balanced is your life? Create the time for
relaxation and play. For example: Schedule daily exercise into your calendar;
schedule and take vacation and mental health days; join a monthly peer group;
allow your family to schedule regular family activities and be there! The
improvement in your work life may surprise you.
Do you need help in making a positive change? Your
Colorado Lawyer Assistance Program provides free and confidential services for
judges, lawyers, and law students. If you need resources for ANY issue that is compromising
your ability to be a productive member of the legal community, or if there is
someone you are concerned about, contact COLAP at (303) 986-3345 or toll free
at 1-855-208-1168. For more information about COLAP, please visit www.coloradolap.org.
Ezyk, Esq. is the Executive Director of the Colorado Lawyer Assistance Program.