Anxiety is the theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW) and LawCare, the legal mental health and wellbeing charity, are highlighting the prevalence of anxiety in the legal community.
Anxiety is one of the top three reasons people working in the law reached out to LawCare for support in 2022. LawCare’s Life in the law study (2021) also showed that 69% of participants said they had experienced mental ill-health over the preceding 12 months, and of those 60.7% said they had experienced anxiety either often, very often, or all of the time.
This Mental Health Awareness Week, LawCare wants to get the legal community talking about the common experience of anxiety, so that legal professionals can recognize the signs and know where to turn to for support. During the week, LawCare is hosting a free webinar about anxiety and releasing new guidance for managers and leaders on how to support a colleague experiencing anxiety.
Free anxiety webinar
Join LawCare for their ‘Let’s talk about anxiety’ webinar on Thursday 18 May, starting at 12.30pm. This hour-long event features a panel of legal professionals who will share their personal experiences of living with anxiety and their strategies for managing it. Book here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/lets-talk-about-anxiety-tickets-619743338007
New guidance for leaders and people managers on anxiety in the workplace
There are steps individuals can take to reduce their feelings of anxiety, but it’s important for leaders and employers to be proactive in helping staff manage anxiety. By doing so staff are less likely to experience work related mental ill health.
LawCare’s new guidance for leaders and people managers on anxiety in the workplace includes ways to support a colleague experiencing anxiety: Guidance for leaders and people managers on workplace anxiety.
Elizabeth Rimmer, CEO of LawCare said: “Many legal professionals experience anxiety. They may worry that they are not cut out for the law, have sleepless nights about a mistake they have made, or be fearful of not meeting targets. The perfectionist personality of legal professionals, the high-performance culture in law, and a lack of effective management support can make legal professionals prone to anxiety. Having anxiety at work can have a huge impact on you and your career, and it is important that managers recognize and do not ignore when colleagues may be experiencing anxiety. Managers need to be equipped to recognize the signs of anxiety, this could be a significant drop in performance or reduced productivity, and then respond with empathy and compassion. A supportive workplace where information about anxiety is visible and talked about will enable colleagues with anxiety to feel psychologically safe to seek support.”
Finding support for anxiety
Anyone who is worried about anxiety should make an appointment with their GP.
Legal professionals can also call LawCare’s confidential helpline on 0800 279 6888 or visit www.lawcare.org.uk for information and emotional support.
Read more about Anxiety in the legal profession and have a look at all LawCare’s resources about anxiety here.