Wired: Anxiety Strikes When I Talk at Harvard Law School

Freud was of the opinion that in fear a person is responding to a specific and immediate threat to physical safety while in anxiety a person is responding to a threat that is objectless, directionless, and located somewhere far off in the future—ruination, for example, or humiliation, or decay. Daniel Smith, Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety

I spoke at Harvard Law about the challenges of living with depression and the epidemic of poor mental health in the legal profession. It was a memorable event.

Days before I am scheduled to talk, my sleep goes cuckoo. I become incredibly anxious about my speech. What if I fall flat on my face? I graduated from some third-tier law school, after all. I don’t belong lecturing at Harvard.  My churning night time ruminations now seep into my days as the event gets closer.

Lawyer Burnout and the Finish Line Problem

This blog by attorney turned therapist Will Meyerhofer discusses how a constant stream of fresh, time-consuming challenges, what he terms the “finish line” problem, contributes to burn out in the legal profession.  As Mr. Meyerhofer explains, it is very difficult to, upon successfully completing a marathon (and giving it everything you to do so in the process), be told that you must be ready to run a new one almost immediately.  Read it here.

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