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Shoshanna N. Silverberg
Elon University School of Law
Leadership Capstone
Fall 2014
to inform and inspire law students
about what it can mean to have an
holistic perspective, on learning and on
life http://...
Why I Thought A Blog Like This Was
Needed
There is a crisis in our profession concerning
wellness. Students in Elon Law’s ...
Quick Definition – What is Wellness?
• Wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a
heal...
Additional Dimensions
• Sense of spirituality or interconnection with all
that exists – wellness is from the inside out
• ...
More On Why
Wellness Matters
• The higher the level of wellness, the higher
one’s productivity in decision-making and
impl...
So What Is This Crisis?
• According to many sources, including the
American Bar Association, those entering the
field of l...
This finding first gained public notice in 1990, when
a study out of Johns Hopkins University entitled
“Occupations and th...
For Lawyers in the Field --
• Estimates from around the country indicate that the incidence of
substance abuse among lawye...
And For Law Students --
• Depression among law students approximates that of the general population
before law school (abo...
What Can Be Done?
De-Stigmatize…
Clarke’s goals for raising the issue of
mental health with his students are:
(1) to help destroy – via openness, honesty, ...
Value Mindfulness
How Exactly Does All of This About Learning
and Living Play Into Leadership?
Authenticity…
If one googles "authenticity and law," results
about reliability in the context of litigation will
come up.
However, if on...
Example search results for
“authenticity and leadership” –
• http://hbr.org/2007/02/discovering-your-authentic-
leadership...
A New Paradigm
All of these takes on leadership stem from a paradigm
that has became increasingly popular since businessma...
Re-Framing Our Stories
George goes on to say:
Reframing our stories enables us to recognize
that we are not victims at all...
Total Leadership
In his book Total Leadership: Be a Better Leader,
Have a Richer Life, professor at the Wharton
School’s S...
Conclusion
My theory is that there is a lack of this perspective
in law school, and in the field of law as a whole.
Who we...
Planting Seeds
As the business sector has started to learn
already, this sort of progress requires
paradigmatic change tha...
Lessons Learned
• Important to find affinity groups
• Important to build directly off of what
colleagues are doing, so a n...
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Htk capstone presentation

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The PowerPoint I delivered to explain HolisticToolKit.com for my Leadership Capstone at Elon University School of Law.

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Htk capstone presentation

  1. 1. Shoshanna N. Silverberg Elon University School of Law Leadership Capstone Fall 2014
  2. 2. to inform and inspire law students about what it can mean to have an holistic perspective, on learning and on life http://holistictoolkit.com
  3. 3. Why I Thought A Blog Like This Was Needed There is a crisis in our profession concerning wellness. Students in Elon Law’s Leadership Program have been documenting this crisis. • Babak Zarin, Wellness Capstone (2013) • Ernest Lewis, Student Note (Elon’s Journal of Law & Leadership 2013 Issue)
  4. 4. Quick Definition – What is Wellness? • Wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life. • "...a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." - The World Health Organization. • "a conscious, self-directed and evolving process of achieving full potential." - The National Wellness Institute • Wellness is more than being free from illness, it is a dynamic process of change and growth. Why Wellness Matters Maintaining an optimal level of wellness is absolutely crucial to live a higher quality life. Wellness matters. Wellness matters because everything we do and every emotion we feel relates to our well-being. In turn, our well-being directly affects our actions and emotions. It’s an ongoing circle. Therefore, it is important for everyone to achieve optimal wellness in order to subdue stress, reduce the risk of illness and ensure positive interactions. (Adapted from University of California Davis’ Student Affairs website)
  5. 5. Additional Dimensions • Sense of spirituality or interconnection with all that exists – wellness is from the inside out • Not about religion or doctrine – IS about AUTHENTICITY (awareness of self & attendant feeling of freedom to express oneself) • About subjective reality; learning to observe, accept and through this, shape our realities • Hinges on experiencing kindness, love`& compassion on a regular basis (spirit is nurtured)
  6. 6. More On Why Wellness Matters • The higher the level of wellness, the higher one’s productivity in decision-making and implementation of ideas aimed at improving the circumstances of one’s life, business or society overall • The lower the level of wellness, the lower our capacity to function productively and lead others and society in a positive direction
  7. 7. So What Is This Crisis? • According to many sources, including the American Bar Association, those entering the field of law are more vulnerable to becoming depressed, dependent on substances or even suicidal than workers in almost any other field.
  8. 8. This finding first gained public notice in 1990, when a study out of Johns Hopkins University entitled “Occupations and the Prevalence of Major Depressive Disorder” was published in the Journal of Occupational Medicine. This article pronounced that lawyers were “the most likely to suffer from depression and were 3.6 times more likely than average to do so.” Since then, a number of more detailed findings have come to light.
  9. 9. For Lawyers in the Field -- • Estimates from around the country indicate that the incidence of substance abuse among lawyers is as much as double the national average • A quality of life survey by the North Carolina Bar Association (1991) found that almost 26% of respondents exhibited symptoms of clinical depression. • This same survey showed almost 12% of respondents contemplate suicide at least once a month. • This North Carolina study was prompted in part by ‘the tragic suicides of eight Mecklenburg County lawyers in a seven year period.
  10. 10. And For Law Students -- • Depression among law students approximates that of the general population before law school (about 9 – 10%). However, it rises to 32% by the end of the first year of law school, and rockets to … 40% by the third year, never to return to pre- law school levels. • Represented graphically, either the pre-law students were uncharacteristically ‘happy’ and scored as less often depressed than they really were, or law school has a significant, permanent deleterious affect on them. • Larry Krieger, a professor at Florida State University College of Law, has conducted research showing that those entering the field of law exhibit clinical anxiety, hostility and depression at rates that range from 8 to 15 times of the general population. • Krieger’s research also indicates that the loss of intrinsic values may be responsible for at least a lowered sense of well-being among first-year law students.
  11. 11. What Can Be Done?
  12. 12. De-Stigmatize…
  13. 13. Clarke’s goals for raising the issue of mental health with his students are: (1) to help destroy – via openness, honesty, and shamelessness — the very real stigma associated with mental illness in general and depression and anxiety in particular; (2) to make sure his students know that if they are struggling with depression or anxiety, that they are not alone (even if they feel that way) (3) to offer himself as a resource for any among them that are struggling; (4) to educate them about the challenges of practicing law; (5) to get them thinking about why they are in law school and what they want their lives in the law to be like (or if they even want a life in the law); and (6) to get them thinking critically and proactively about the different career paths available to those with law degrees, which can have a significant impact on their personal well-being.
  14. 14. Value Mindfulness
  15. 15. How Exactly Does All of This About Learning and Living Play Into Leadership?
  16. 16. Authenticity…
  17. 17. If one googles "authenticity and law," results about reliability in the context of litigation will come up. However, if one googles "authenticity and leadership," very different results come up.
  18. 18. Example search results for “authenticity and leadership” – • http://hbr.org/2007/02/discovering-your-authentic- leadership/ar/1 • http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cutting-edge- leadership/201401/what-is-authentic-leadership-do-you- have-it • http://smallbusiness.chron.com/authentic-leadership-style- 10866.html
  19. 19. A New Paradigm All of these takes on leadership stem from a paradigm that has became increasingly popular since businessman and academic, Bill George, published Authentic Leadership: Rediscovering the Secrets to Creating Lasting Value in 2003 and True North: Discovering Your Authentic Leadership in 2007. In True North, George points out that “[t]he difference with authentic leaders lies in the way they frame their stories. Their life stories provide the context for their lives, and through them they find their passion and inspiration to make an impact in the world.”
  20. 20. Re-Framing Our Stories George goes on to say: Reframing our stories enables us to recognize that we are not victims at all but people shaped by experiences that provide the impetus for us to become leaders. Our life stories evolve constantly as we shape the meaning of our past, present, and future.
  21. 21. Total Leadership In his book Total Leadership: Be a Better Leader, Have a Richer Life, professor at the Wharton School’s Stewart D. Friedman states that “[a]cting with authenticity gives you the strength that comes from doing what you love, drawing on the resources of your whole life, knowing that you’re creating value for your self, your family, your business, your world. Effective leaders articulate a vision—a compelling image of an achievable future—that inspires them and the people around them.”
  22. 22. Conclusion My theory is that there is a lack of this perspective in law school, and in the field of law as a whole. Who we are as individuals is not viewed as pertinent to a given task that is at hand. It is the external analysis of issues that we are concerned with, not the internal analysis that provides a basis for people to make conscious decisions. But in order to be successful – to live in some form of authenticity and to lead that way – we must be in touch with who we are.
  23. 23. Planting Seeds As the business sector has started to learn already, this sort of progress requires paradigmatic change that begins with the transformation of culture. Leadership enters the conversation here, as someone must start planting seeds in order for change to grow within people, within organizations, and within systems. This blog is a movement towards that type of change in the field of law.
  24. 24. Lessons Learned • Important to find affinity groups • Important to build directly off of what colleagues are doing, so a network of information and support around various topics can emerge • Do not worry if where your heart leads feels at odds with the larger culture you are a part of • Never stop using your voice.

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