In honor of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, Legal Innovators focused on increasing mental and physical well-being for our attorneys and staff. In a profession where levels of anxiety and stress are prevalent, bringing attention and sensitivity to mental health issues can make all the difference in one’s career path and overall well-being. That is why during the month of May, we encouraged action and innovation to promote overall wellness, through participating in #WellbeingWeekinLaw, challenging our team to try new methods of self-care, and making an extra effort to connect with one another in a social atmosphere. As May has wrapped up, we want to reflect on the ways in which we fostered connection and self-growth and how we will continue to promote mental health as a company.
May Mental Health Challenge
As a part of our effort to encourage new methods of self-care, we introduced the May Mental Health Challenge. This challenge consisted of twenty-five tasks, all of which were centered around advancing our team’s mental well-being. In the spirit of friendly competition, the winner was determined based on the number of activities completed. With all our attorneys and staff taking part in this month-long event, we were eager to see how our team would approach each task and make it their own. The ingenuity our teammates brought to the challenge was a pleasant surprise, from new cooking recipes such as herb crusted lamb shanks to planning a west coast trip. Aside from this team activity encouraging the adoption of new and sustainable habits, this shared experience helped each of us learn more about one another and bolstered team bonding.
We also adopted “Espresso Chats,” short 15-minute weekly check ins, based on the idea that connection and friendship offer several mental health benefits, including increased feelings of belonging, happiness, and improved self-worth and confidence. To foster these connections and a sense of belonging with one another, as well as provide an outlet for mental breaks, we hosted afternoon Espresso Chats once a week on Zoom. Especially in a virtual world, where there are no “watercooler breaks,” Espresso Chats provided a designated time for the team to socialize with their colleagues and decompress from a morning’s work. Each chat was themed, with topics selected to encourage discussion. For example, one week we discussed our pets, whereas another we played a game of ‘this or that,’ having the team face “controversial” questions like do you prefer chocolate or vanilla? The only rule was that we were not to discuss work.
Legal Innovators’ dedication to maintaining a work environment that places an emphasis on mental and physical well-being does not begin nor end with the month of May, it is engrained in our culture. Activities, such as the May Mental Health Challenge, provide us with the opportunity to learn and become inspired by the approaches our fellow colleagues take to further improve their mental health and well-being. Similarly, scheduling a brief break from bustling workdays to attend an “Espresso Chat”, to have light-hearted conversations with colleagues reminds us how a few minutes can have a meaningful impact not only on our own well-being but our fellow teammates’ well-being as well.