Federation of Ontario Law Associations

Mental Health & Wellness Resources

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MEMBER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM - FOR ONTARIO LAWYERS

Did you know?  Ontario lawyers (and their families) have access to a Member Assistance Program (MAP).   It is a fully confidential service provided by Homewood Health.


MAP provides secure, single sign-on access to counselling, coaching, online resources and peer volunteers. Members can get professional help with issues related to addictions, mental or physical health, work-life balance, career, family and more..  Learn more on the Member Assistance Program website.


For questions about specific services covered by MAP call 1-855-403-8922.


BELL LET'S TALK DAY 2020!

FOLA will once again be running a #BellLetsTalk awareness campaign.  Learn how to get involved and engage your members! Learn more!


PEER VOLUNTEERS NEEDED

If you're an empathetic and caring lawyer who has struggled in the past with addiction, mental health, or other serious issues, consider helping colleagues facing similar struggles by volunteering for MAP's confidential Peer Support Program.


The Peer Support Program, an integral part of the Member Assistance Program, offers peer-to-peer support to lawyers.  No experience is necessary - Homewood Health provides all volunteers with on-going training on effective ways to support others in the profession.  The program is administrated by People Corporation to ensure the full confidentiality of all client information.


For more information about this volunteer opportunity, send an email to  peervolunteer@peoplecorporation.com or call  1.855.403.8922.

YOUR MENTAL HEALTH

Mental health means striking a balance in all aspects of your life: social, physical, spiritual, economic and mental. Reaching a balance is a learning process. At times, you may tip the balance too much in one direction and have to find your footing again. Your personal balance will be unique, and your challenge will be to stay mentally healthy by keeping that balance. 


Click here for information and suggestions from the Canadian Mental Health Association to help you keep your balance.   


Click here and enter your postal code to find your local Canadian Mental Health Association branch. 

ONTARIO AA LINKS

Alcoholics Anonymous is an international fellowship of men and women who think they have a drinking problem. It is nonprofessional, self-supporting, multiracial, apolitical, and available almost everywhere. There are no age or education requirements. Membership is open to anyone who wants to do something about his or her drinking problem.  Click here to find a meeting in your area (Ontario Only).

WORKPLACE MENTAL HEALTH

Medcan offers employee health solutions bridge the gap between your benefits plan and the health needs of your employees.  Plus, they have some amazing resources for you and your family.  


The Great-West Life Centre for Mental Health in the Workplace is a leading source of free, practical tools and resources designed to help Canadian employers with the prevention, intervention and management of workplace mental health issues. All tools and resources are available in English and French to anyone, anywhere, at no cost. 

MINDFULNESS

Mindfulness Without Borders (MWB) is a leading provider of best practices and evidenced-based programs on secular mindfulness and social-emotional intelligence to youth, educators, health and corporate professionals in communities around the world.  MWB offers in-person and on-line workshops, produce a fantastic blog, and have lots of resources on their website.  


MUSE, a Personal Meditation Assistant from Toronto's Interaxon, is wearable tech at its best!   It's a headband that, when paired with their app, gives you feedback about your meditation in real time by translating your brain signals into the sounds of weather.

MORE RESOURCES COMING SOON

Do you have something you'd like to share?  Please contact our Executive Director at katie.robinette@fola.ca.  Thanks

#BELLLETSTALK 2020 is on January 29!

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RAISING $$ FOR MENTAL HEALTH

On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell will donate 5¢ towards mental health initiatives in Canada for every text or call on the Bell network and 5¢ for every tweet, social media video view or use of Bell’s custom Facebook frame or Snapchat filter.  


And FOLA is here to help!  In addition to offering some great content related to mental health and lawyers for you to use on social media, FOLA will retweet each post we see that contains the hashtag #BellLetsTalk and our handle @Ont_Law_Assoc .


Let's raise $$ for mental health and show the world Lawyers care about this issue 

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WANT MORE INFO?

Leading up to, and during Jan 29, FOLA will once again be running a #BellLetsTalk Awareness campaign to help engage Ontario’s lawyers in this empowering online #mentalhealth campaign. 


Occurring mostly on Twitter, the annual #BellLetsTalk initiative is an amazing opportunity to participate in a massive dialogue about mental health and lawyers can, once again, play a big role!


Last year, throughout the month of January FOLA's #BellLetsTalk awareness campaign  increased our twitter traffic  -  far outperforming our usual engagement:  Our retweets were up 700% from December and our  Link Clicks were up 246%!  

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THIS IS WHY!

FOLA knows our community could use some help: too many lawyers are struggling - a high rate of lawyers experience some level of problem drinking, depression, and anxiety (according to a study of nearly 13,000 practicing lawyers commissioned by the American Bar Association and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation found).


READ A 2019 REPORT CALLED "CREATING A WELL-BEING MOVEMENT IN THE UTAH LEGAL COMMUNITY" BY THE  UTAH TASK FORCE ON LAWYER AND JUDGE WELL-BEING. 


If you are a lawyer and need help, please contact the Law Society's Member Assistance Program. 

THIS JANUARY, MAKE MENTAL HEALTH A PRIORITY!

WHY TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH?

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Many people living with a mental illness (including lawyers and/or their clients) report that negative stereotypes about mental illness, and the resulting potential for discrimination, cause them more suffering - and more often in silence -  than the illness itself. 


As a result, two thirds of those suffering from mental illness are too afraid to seek the help that they need.


FOLA knows our community could use some help: too many lawyers are struggling - a high rate of lawyers experience some level of problem drinking, depression, and anxiety (according to a study of nearly 13,000 practicing lawyers commissioned by the American Bar Association and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation).  Self-medicating is not the solution!


But there is help.  Talk to your doctor and seek professional help.  With medication, and/or and proper self care, most people with mental illnesses are fully treatable.  But no one gets better in isolation.  Shame and silence makes it worse.


Please join FOLA as we  as we work together to break the silence around mental illness.


READ THE 2019 REPORT "CREATING A WELL-BEING MOVEMENT IN THE UTAH LEGAL COMMUNITY" BY THE  UTAH TASK FORCE ON LAWYER AND JUDGE WELL-BEING. 


If you are a lawyer and need help, please contact: 

IMAGES THAT YOU CAN SHARE

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LET'S RAISE SOME MONEY FOR MENTAL HEALTH!!


On January 29, 2020 (Bell Let’s Talk Day),  Bell will contribute 5 cents more to Canadian mental health programs for every text, mobile and long distance call made on the Bell network.  Don't use Bell?  Want to amplify your voice?  Bell will also donate 5 cents or each and every Tweet using the hashtag #BellLetsTalk!


Don't have time to create your own tweets?  Don't know what to Tweet?  Want images to go with those tweets?  FOLA has you covered!

In the coming weeks, we'll be building out this page with suggested tweets including #mentalwellness tips, #mentalhealth and #mentalillness facts and myths, images, and more. 


All geared to lawyers.


Because we think Lawyers need to talk about #mentalhealth too.  





*****HAVE IMAGES AND/OR CONTECT TO SHARE?  WE MIGHT FEATURE IT HERE.  SEND CONTENT SUGGESTIONS TO KATIE AT:

katie.robinette@fola.ca and but BLT in the subject line.*****

TWITTER-FRIENDLY MENTAL HEALTH FACTS (& FICTION)

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Fast Fact about #MentalIllness #1: Mental illness indirectly affects all Canadians at some time through a family member, friend or colleague #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


Fast Fact about #MentalIllness #2: In any given year, 1 in 5 people in Canada will personally experience a #mentalhealth problem or illness #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


Fast Fact about #MentalIllness #3: Mental illness does not discriminate: It affects people of all ages, education, income levels, and cultures #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #1: #MentalHealth doesn’t affect me. FACT: We all need to take care of our mental health #HealthyMind, #HealthyBody #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #2: People w/ a #mentalillness never get better. FACT: Treatments are avail & full #recovery is attainable. It may involve more than just drugs; it also may include being socially & physically active #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #3: #Psychiatric disorders are not true illnesses. FACTS: Unlike a broken leg, #mentalillness can been invisible. They exist in our #brain chemistry and can be diagnosed #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #4: People w/ a mental illness lack intelligence. FACT: The level of intelligence among people w/ #mentalillness parallels healthy populations #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #5: People w/ a #mentalillness shouldn’t have jobs. FACT: People w/ mental illness can & do function well in the workplace. With a proper treatment plan, they can thrive as well as anyone else #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalHealth Myth #6. People w/ mental illnesses just can’t handle stress. Fact: #Stress impacts well-being, but this is true for everyone. Taking care of yourself & asking for help are signs of #strength not weakness #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


Looking for an image to add to your tweet? Check out our photo gallery below and then right click on any pic & save for easy sharing! 


Want to learn what you can do?  Here are some tips.

TWEETABLE WELLNESS TIPS FOR LAWYERS

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#MentalWellness Tip: Find Healthy Outlets: In this #video http://bit.ly/2V8I4oP by @OBAlawyers, Dr. Douglas & Dr. Horner by discuss healthy outlets to help you cope #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: Dealing w/ Chronic Stress: In this #video http://bit.ly/2SeAw1D by @OBAlawyers, Counsellor Rosana Zammit helps you understand what chronic #stress is, why u should care, & what u can do about it #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: Ask for Help: Talk 2 those close to u about what 2 look 4 at the beginning of a downward depression spiral. Watch this @OBAlawyers #Video: http://bit.ly/2ENDNSH #BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: Managing expectations: Ideas 2 help u w/ #timemanagement, relationships, demands, expectations & your own emotional needs by @OBAlawyers http://bit.ly/2AgOl91 

#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: #Depression: Modes of Coping “Different Modes of Coping Can Help Different People Manage Adversity” #Video by @OBAlawyers http://bit.ly/2BHFCwj#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: The Perfectionism Trap: Counsellor Rosana Zammit discusses the pros & cons of perfectionism: #Video by @OBAlawyers http://bit.ly/2Ag7cBc#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: Managing Demands: #Legal work requires exactitude & critical attention to detail. Self-care can help lawyers do an even better job at work. http://bit.ly/2EL5A5x @OBAlawyers

#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: Enjoy the Benefits of Exercise. Just five minutes of activity can boost your mood. #Video by @OBAlawyers http://bit.ly/2LyGWGx#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: #MentalHealth Strategies 4 #Lawyers: Dealing w/ personality factors in the #workplace – the sooner, the better! http://bit.ly/2SdAAPk@OBAlawyers

#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc


#MentalWellness Tip: At-Your-Desk Breathing Exercise: Counsellor Rosana Zammit demos a technique 2 help lower #stress levels. #Video by @OBAlawyers http://bit.ly/2SkfhvA 

#BellLetsTalk @Ont_Law_Assoc

WHAT YOU CAN DO!

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If you are a lawyer and need help, please contact the Law Society's Member Assistance Program.


Language matters

The words you use can make all the difference. Words can help, but they can also hurt.


Educate yourself

Stigma has been around for a long time. knowing the facts and myths about mental illness can be a great way to help end the stigma. Become a stigma buster!


Be Kind

Simple kindness can make a world of difference. Whether it be a smile, being a good listener or an invitation for coffee and a chat, these simple acts of kindness can help open up the conversation and let someone know you are there for them.


Expressions like “You’ll get over it” and “Just relax” can minimize how a person is feeling. Instead offer your support and say “I’m sorry you aren’t feeling well.” Ask what you can do to help.


Listen

Mental illness is a very common form of human pain and suffering. Being a good listener and asking how you can help, sometimes just even being there for people you care about, can be the first step in recovery.


Talk about it

Break the silence. Mental illness touches us all in some way directly or through a friend, family member or colleague. Stories of people who have experienced mental health issues and who are doing well can really challenge stereotypes. Most people with mental health issues can and do recover, some just by talking about it.


Other helpful tips

To help you be part of the conversation, the Bell Let’s Talk Conversation Guide was created. It provides information and resources on how you can facilitate a conversation in your community, as well as guidelines on how to have conversations with people you care about and may be concerned about.

 

Download Bell’s Conversation guide

SOME US & UK STATS

FLORIDA LAWYERS & MENTAL HEALTH

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MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AID UK

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CALIFORNIA LAWYERS AND ALCOHOL

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LEGAL STUDENTS & MENTAL HEALTH UK

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AMERICAN BAR ASSOCATION

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AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION MENTAL HEALTH PLEDGE

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