“When I was Head of Chambers I had a breakdown of sorts due to excessive stress. I was grossly over-stretched with my busy practice and running chambers at a time when we were acquiring and moving into new chambers. To make matters worse, my marriage of some 23 years was not functioning.
As a result I began to get seriously depressed which remained un-diagnosed for about 12 months. I began a course of group therapy supervised by a psychiatrist. After about a year I felt relatively normal again. During this time I took anti-depressants which were very helpful.
In all the whole episode lasted about two and a half years. Although my marriage sadly ended in divorce I have recovered and have since re-married. Life is very good again.
Since my treatment I have discovered the benefit which can be derived from meditation. If it is practised properly and regularly (every day is best) meditation can do a lot to stop stress developing and to keep inner peace – no matter what chaos may be going on around you.
There are many different types of meditation practice, most of which appear to be effective. I think it is simply a question of “suck it and see” which method works best for you. I have practiced mindfulness for over 8 years now and swear by it. Recently it has become very popular and I find it very effective in keeping me calm and in control of my mind no matter what I am having to deal with.
I believe the problems I encountered are quite normal for busy barristers, and they can be dealt with quickly and effectively. My breakdown occurred more than 18 years ago now and there has been no re-occurrence”.
The information and resource packs on this website are designed to help you and your colleagues to work as a community for better wellbeing and professional resilience. If you want to provide feedback on these resources, or to get involved in promoting wellbeing please get in touch.
It can be difficult to make a living from law and it can be pressurised and demanding. Competition and an adversarial approach to everything can make collegiate relationships difficult. This website aims to provide you with the knowledge to manage these stressors, make emotionally informed, wise professional decisions and thrive in your chosen profession.
A simple expression that sums up wellbeing is ‘travelling well’
59% of barristers demonstrate unhealthy levels of perfectionism