Wellness

The Dean of Students Office at GW Law is committed to promoting your wellness whether you are at your highest highs or lowest lows. Wellness can be understood as an ongoing, active process of promoting growth across several dimensions, including emotional, safety/physical, social, financial, spiritual, occupational, and intellectual well-being. Below you will find a list of resources and services available to you across these dimensions.

Tame The Shame: Why Self-Compassion Is A Law Student’s Secret Weapon

Passcode: ^z6Xeh2$

Presented by: Niki Irish, Senior Counselor for the D.C. Bar Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP)


The practice of law is a helping profession; people often entering it with a desire to help others and alleviate their pain. While this exemplifies compassion flowing outward to other people, the inward flowing compassion is often derided as antithetical to being a strong, competent, successful attorney. What if the opposite were true? There is a strong emerging body of research that focuses on the idea of self-compassion as a tool to increase emotional resilience, which can mitigate stress and burnout. Join us to learn strategies to protect yourself from the demands and stressors of law school, particularly during these trying times.

 

Faking It: Overcoming Imposter Syndrome in Law & Life

Presented by Kami Sidman, JD, MA Ed, and Licensed Professional Counselor

 

If you have ever caught yourself feeling that you aren’t as capable as others think or worrying that – at any time - somebody could figure out that you are a fraud, you are not alone. It’s called imposter syndrome, and you might be surprised to find out how many law students have felt the same way. This presentation will explore what imposter syndrome is, how it may be hindering your goals, and what you can do to interrupt the painful cycle of self-doubt, procrastination, and self-sabotage.

 

Not Just a Number - The Importance of Credit to Law Students

Presented by MAX @ Access Lex

(note: students must already be logged into the GW Law Portal in order to access the above link)

 

Your credit report provides more information than just what feeds your credit score. It creates a full picture of your financial health and behavior. Bar examiners may review your credit history and take into consideration your fiscal responsibility (or irresponsibility) when evaluating your Character and Fitness to practice law. And employers may do the same when considering a job offer. Learn to understand the credit system, review your reports, dispute errors, and maintain a positive image with creditors – regardless of where you are on the credit score spectrum.

 

The Psychology of Financial Decision Making

Presented by MAX @ Access Lex

(note: students must already be logged into the GW Law Portal in order to access the above link)

 

Everyone approaches money matters differently. Knowing not only how you handle your finances, but why, can hold the key to achieving your financial goals. This workshop focuses on identifying your individual strengths and weaknesses, and will prepare you to balance emotion and logic when making personal finance decisions.

 

Be Wise, Be Well

Presented by Niki L. Irish, LICSW, Senior Counselor for the D.C. Bar Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP)

 

A panel conversation addressing substance use, recovery, and coping skills.

Stressed? Learn How to Reimagine and Handle Your Stress So You Can Live Your Best Life 

Presented by Dr. Allison Aclufi

In this presentation, Dr. Aclufi explains how and why we stress-out and what
we can do to minimize its impact on our thoughts, feelings, and actions, while walking you through activities and exercises that can help relax and restore your sense of peace and calm. Please have pencil and paper handy and wear comfy clothes. Access to a chair, sofa, or yoga mat will be helpful.

 

The Power of Plant-Based Nutrition for Cognitive Performance & Preventing Chronic Disease

Presented by Larissa Vculek, a Certified
Holistic Nutritionist

 

The Science of Productivity, Performance, and Personal Satisfaction

Presented by Judith Gordon

How do we sustain our energy, motivation, focus and productivity? This short training offers tools and strategies for optimizing performance and overcoming procrastination, so that work gets done with energy to spare.

 

Get it Together: Organization and Personal Well-Being  

Presented by Rachel Rosenthal, organizing expert

 

Inclusion & Well-Being in BigLaw: A Discussion with Fred Nance

Presented by the GW Law Student Bar Association, the Dean of Students Office, and the Career Center

A moderated discussion with Fred Nance, Global Managing Partner for Squire Patton Boggs, about challenges and opportunities for people of color in Big Law, maintaining wellness in law practice, and his high-profile career
in sports & entertainment law representing luminaries such as LeBron James & Dave Chappelle.

The GW Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) provides confidential counseling to students related to a variety of issues. Among their many group counseling sessions, they offer a weekly group related to grief. In addition, below are other helpful resources for those dealing with grief:

  • American Foundation for Suicide Loss Prevention (AFSP) – provides resources to suicide loss survivors. 
  • DC Bar Lawyer’s Assistance Program – offers free and confidential assistance related to mental health to students currently enrolled at the six law schools in D.C.
  • Hope for Grieving Families – has a great professional resources page related to resources for those dealing with grief.
  • Modern Loss – describes itself “a place to share the unspeakably taboo, unbelievably hilarious, and unexpectedly beautiful terrain of navigating your life after a death. Beginners welcome.”
  • Option B - an organization dedicated to helping people build resilience in the face of adversity—and giving them the tools to help their family, friends, and community build resilience too. Here, you can read and share personal stories, join groups for solidarity and support, and find information from experts.
  • Refuge In Grief – resources on how to manage grief or support a grieving friend. 
  • Wendt Center for Loss & Healing – based in Washington, DC, the Center provides online resources as well as counseling recourses for those dealing with grief and trauma.

Articles:

Helping a Friend

What to look for:

  • Confused thinking
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs
  • Missing assignments
  • Increasing irritability
  • Dramatic changes to appearance, e.g., disheveled, significant weight loss or gain, poor hygiene
  • Short temper or frequently agitated
  • Excessive self-criticism
  • Suicidal thoughts or references to self-harm
  • Increased isolation

What you can do:

  • Reach out and offer to talk or spend time together
  • Listen and be supportive
  • Offer to accompany your friend to Counseling and Psychological Services or call their 24/7 phone line: 202-994-5300
  • Access the CARE Network: a cross-departmental support system which recognizes that student concerns are often multi-faceted. Students are connected to resources through inter-departmental collaboration to provide them with appropriate and personalized outreach. Reports can be made anonymously.

Mental and Emotional Wellness

GW Resources

Off-campus Resources

Helpful Apps, Podcasts, and Websites

Financial Wellness

Spiritual Wellness

Spirituality is the aspect of humanity that refers to the way individuals seek and express meaning and purpose, and the way they experience their connectedness to the moment, to self, to others, to nature, and to the significant or sacred.

GW Student Resources

Local Resources

National Resources

Intellectual/Academic Wellness

Occupational Wellness

  • AskJan - The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is the leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on workplace accommodations and disability employment issues.