Like most people, I would imagine, I really hate going to the doctor. I wait until the pain is so bad or the problem is so disruptive that I simply have no choice than to make an appointment (and inevitably be annoyed by the fact that I have to wait a day or two: “I’m sick! Can’t you tell?!?!”), sit in a waiting room for who knows how long, have a nurse poke at me and ask personal questions, and then have a doctor do the exact same thing. That’s not even the end! Then I have to mosey down to the pharmacy in the middle of my day and wait for what has been prescribed to me to fix that pain/illness/whatever that I’ve let get too bad.
The irony is that I have a slew of doctors that work to keep me functioning, and this leads me to my point:
We are better at our jobs when we take care of ourselves.
Why don’t I like taking a half day off to go to the doctor for that weird pain in my chest? Because I don’t want to lose that half day of working. How much time do I lose when I end up in the emergency room? How much time do I lose when I’m so sick I can’t actually come into the office?
Taking care of ourselves seems to take up a lot of our time when we’re busy making our billables or dealing with our clients, but it’s important to our overall well-being and for the quality of our work.
Firms, managing partners, attorney directors of staff, head paralegals, HR, etc., need to be aware and accepting of preventative care. Letting your staff, associate attorneys, etc. take care of themselves, allows them to be better employees and increases the quality of their work product.
It’s hard to concentrate on a brief when your wisdom teeth are killing you. Believe me, I’ve been there.
(On a side note: I would also like to cue the Robert Earl Keen song “Feels so Good Feelin’ Good Again” because I love it.)