By: Kayla Richmond, Esq. LCBA – YLD Secretary, Anitra Raiford, Esq. LCBA – YLD Recruitment Chair, & Blaze Douglas, Esq.
The Lee County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division (“YLD”) recently accepted the state-wide challenge to focus on health and wellness for the month of May. Following the lead of the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division, who designated May 2015 as “The Florida Bar YLD Health & Wellness Month,” the Lee County YLD hopes to encourage those in Lee County to also “#livewell.”
Young Lawyers are coached throughout law school to practice a work-life balance. But many soon realize as they begin their careers, it’s not as easy as it sounds. Whether working for a large firm, a non-profit organization, a government entity, or hanging one’s own shingle, the stresses of impressing a boss, learning the law, assisting clients, and making a living, begin to trump any focus on health and wellness.
To us in the Young Lawyers Division, practicing health and wellness can be done in a variety of ways. It’s choosing to avoid caffeinated beverages, including sodas and coffees. It’s making sure to exercise at least three times a week. It’s catching our favorite TV show or having a few minutes of peace and quiet. It’s gathering as a family to have dinner together. It’s catching some rays under the Florida sun!
Spending time in the sun is a great way to boost endorphins and get your essential dose of Vitamin D. Recent studies have shown that increased Vitamin D levels in employees lead to healthier and more productive work-places. Some researchers have even gone so far as to recommend work-place programs to encourage employees to increase their intake of Vitamin D. Fortunately for us Floridians, a quick break outside can provide the nutrients and boost we need to combat depression, stress, and a variety of other health issues.
To promote health and wellness the Young Lawyers Division participated in a paddle boarding social on May 16th with the Collier County Young Lawyers Division. After applying for, and receiving the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division health and wellness grant, we successfully hosted a paddle boarding event for over 25 young lawyers. Thanks to the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division’s grant, we were able to provide an opportunity for members to focus on health and wellness by exercising, spending time with friends, making some new friends, soaking up that Vitamin D, and #livingwell.
 See Plotnikoff GA, Finch MD, Dusek JA, Impact of Vitamin D deficiency on the productivity of a health care workforce, Journal of Occupational Environmental Medicine, Feb. 2012.