23 | Michael Higer, Immediate Past President of the Florida Bar, on the Importance of Mental Health and Wellness in the legal profession

Welcoming Mr. Michael Higer to the MNBP!

 Source: The Florida Bar,  International Law Section  

Source: The Florida Bar, International Law Section 

As a practicing attorney for over thirty years and Immediate Past President of the Florida Bar (2017-2018), Mr. Higer brought his experience, perspective, and kind heart to our conversation. 

This episode is a special one and came together in a serendipitous way, thank you G.C.! We recorded live in Key West, FL just as he concluded his term. The primary topic of this episode is the most important initiative during his time as President of the Florida Bar:


the mental health and wellness of Florida lawyers

 

Despite my limited and inexperienced perspective as a young lawyer, I feel the stress, anxiety, and the pressure that accompanies working as a lawyer. Fortunately, due to experiences in my life, I am aware of it, how I deal with it, and on a daily basis, take steps to cope in healthy ways as well as continue in the direction of being of service to others who need support.  

Mr. Higer shared with us the ways in which The Florida Bar is supporting their members. What is important to remember is that the conversation now exists! Whereas in years past for attorneys struggling, there was no conversation.

I hope that Michael's words hit a cord in you so that you can recognize in yourself, if you are a practicing attorney or not, when you need to take a stand. If you work as an attorney in Florida or in any other state and you are struggling with stress, anxiety, and taking care of yourself, I encourage you to speak up, reach out, ask for help. It is worth it - you are not alone.

 

Memorable quotes: 

“Engage the conversation, elevate the conversation, maintain the conversation, and continue the conversation if you are going to address the core issue which is the stigma.” - on the conversation about the Mental Health and Wellness of Florida Attorneys

“We have started the conversation so people can feel a little bit more comfortable about the conversation.”

“How are you going to make yourself stronger, how are you going to make yourself more equipped.” - on coping with stress in the legal profession 

 “Whatever you do, do it because you love doing it, because you are passionate and you really care.” - advice to a young lawyer or anyone in 2018

“There is always time in every single day to take a little time for yourself.” - on self-care 

 

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Where you can learn more about Mr. Higer
Florida Bar website



 

 

A huge shout out to Na'an Stop the jammin' band from Boulder, Colorado for the accompanying podcast music. Their music makes you feel good and want to get up and dance! 

Visit them on social media:

Na'an Stop website
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 Photo credit: https://twitter.com/naanstopmusic & http://www.boulderweekly.com/entertainment/music/green-light-for-boulder-band-naan-stop/edit: 

Photo credit: https://twitter.com/naanstopmusic & http://www.boulderweekly.com/entertainment/music/green-light-for-boulder-band-naan-stop/edit: 

 Photo credit: https://twitter.com/naanstopmusic & http://www.boulderweekly.com/entertainment/music/green-light-for-boulder-band-naan-stop/edit: 

Photo credit: https://twitter.com/naanstopmusic & http://www.boulderweekly.com/entertainment/music/green-light-for-boulder-band-naan-stop/edit: 

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