Site icon The Gingko Leaf: Psychotherapy and Counselling

Lawyers Seeking Therapy or Counselling

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I like the use of symbols, because they carry a wisdom of their own. I choose to use the symbol of the Gingko leaf not only because of its beauty but also because of its resilience - to reminds us just how strong people are in the face of adversity. Often we see the inner strength of people shine-through while they struggle to make meaning out of the setbacks in their life, their losses, or their grief. The Gingko leaf reminds me that regardless of the circumstances, we have no reason to lose hope.   

Becoming a lawyer took hard work – it is not for the faint of heart or mind. However those skills that enable you to become a lawyer often work heavily against you in creating a happy and healthy life. That single minded focus does not always provide for a full and enriching life.

I spent more than a decade working in London and Amsterdam in the investment banking and insurance world as a lawyer and experienced the effects of corporate life from the inside. These experiences led ultimately to me asking some profound questions around the work I was doing and the impact that work was having on myself and my environs. The work began to fundamentally shape me and I did not like what I was seeing. Let’s face it, legal practice asks of you often to suppress feelings and sometimes even your humanity. It was at this point in my career that I began seeing a therapist of my own. The questions and the answers I found led me ultimately to making the enormous decision to change my career.

As a psychotherapist, mediator and lawyer I am well placed to understand the everyday challenges and difficulties faced by members of the legal profession. Working as a member of the legal profession is a stressful and an often misunderstood vocation. Coping with stress is vitally important to maintaining a healthy and happy life. Unfortunately the work life balance remains a mystery to many lawyers. Lawyers have higher rates of depression, anxiety, stress and addiction issues than the general population. This page is created to assist those of you in the profession to understand why you might benefit from psychotherapy.

The very nature of the legal profession makes it difficult for the lawyer to step back and ask for help – when your everyday life involves creating a perception of togetherness, strength, having the ‘smarts’ and being successful. At law school we are not taught how to look after ourselves while we carry out this sometimes very demanding work. Talking with someone who knows what you are experiencing can help to rebalance that imbalance.

Lawyers tend to be distrustful – it is an unfortunate and misunderstood side-effect of our training. We also tend to be risk adverse, bracing ourselves for the next attack – after all it’s our head on the block when something goes wrong. We are supposed to pre-think everything, ensure that nothing has been left out and be constantly vigilant. Lawyers often work in intensely competitive environments. Law firms consume your life, long hours, unrealistic time frames and expectations. It is hard for others to understand the nature of this kind of environment.

Here are some of the reasons why a lawyer might use the services of a psychotherapist:

Therapy can:

Don’t wait until things get on top of you!

Call for a private and confidential consultation.

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