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It’s not too late to invest in yourself with free webinars

There’s still time to register to catch the last four in a series of live webinars happening as part of NCRA’s Mental Health Awareness Week being observed Oct. 5-9. These webinars are filling up fast and are designed to help members learn more about how to take care of themselves through a series of free sessions that range from a discussion of the ramifications of working in the legal industry to strategies to create more resilience in your everyday life with better self-care.

Although no CEUs are being offered for these sessions, the National Court Reporters Foundation (NCRF), which is sponsoring these sessions, feels that these are important topics that should be made available to all NCRA members. All webinars are being offered on Zoom and will take place in Eastern time. All of the webinars are being recorded and will be made available for later viewing by members on the NCRA Mental Health Resources page.

Remaining sessions that will be offered live this week include:

Balance and Self-Care in a World of COVID-19, Deadlines, and Virtuality taking place Oct. 7 at 3 p.m., Eastern time is being led by Vicki Akenhead Ruiz, FAPR, RPR, CMRS (Ret.), a former court reporter and a past NCRA president. Ruiz will talk about approaches to dealing with the stress coming from working in the courtroom and how stress affects reporters. In addition, she will share tips for dealing with loss and how to strengthen your overall mental health.

*Special for students*

Self-Care: Managing Life with School, Family, Work – and a Pandemic, is being offered Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. Eastern time. The session is being led by Dr. Sherry Cooper, LMFT, who will address how to balance the responsibilities of being a student and taking care of yourself. Dr. Cooper will also introduce the topic of self-care, its importance to your overall well-being, ways to engage in self-care, and the repercussions of neglecting self-care.

Practicing Mindfulness is being presented on Oct. 8 at 1 p.m. Eastern time. This session is being led by Debi Galler, the general counsel of Green Street Power Partners, a developer, owner, and operator of solar projects throughout the United States based in Connecticut and a mindfulness practitioner and trainer. Galler will explain how mindfulness can play a meaningful role in the lives of legal professionals and how mindfulness can change the structure and function of the brain in the areas of attention, emotional regulation, and memory. Galler will also teach participants exercises that can help them reduce stress and work effectively in emotionally charged and challenging situations.

Self-Care 101, is taking place on Oct. 9 at 12 noon Eastern time. Aigner Fells, MS, is a psychotherapist who provides therapy for individuals, couples, groups, and families and takes a holistic approach to bring awareness to her clients and help them work to develop strategies and reach desired goals. She will discuss the issue of burnout syndrome and how self-care can set the stage to counter burnout, which, in turn, releases physical and emotional toxins. Throughout the webinar, participants will learn about the effects of burnout syndrome and how to be better equipped with tools and strategies for implementing self-care as part of their daily routine.

Previous webinars that will be available for viewing by members are located on the NCRA Mental Health Awareness page and include:

An Honest Discussion on Mental Health Issues in the Legal Field from All Stakeholders, which was an open town hall discussion conducted by Dori Foster-Morales, Esq.; NCRA President Christine Phipps, RPR; and the Hon. Beatrice Butchko of how our jobs in the legal field affect our mental health and how we can protect ourselves. The discussion also confronts some of the myths and fears about mental health and will provide insight and understanding into how we can help ourselves and others when it comes to mental health issues.

Back to Basics: Mental Health Essentials during the Pandemic, which was led by Raymond J. Kotwicki, MD, MPH, DFAPA, the Charles B. West chief medical officer at Skyland Trail, a nationally acclaimed treatment organization for adults with mental illnesses based in Atlanta, Ga., and a nationally recognized speaker on issues in psychiatry, mental health, professionalism, and wellness. The session focuses on the psychological impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on all of us, from social isolation to increased sleep disturbances and chronic worry and anxiety. Kotwicki also talks about how to differentiate when feelings are “normal” during such unprecedented times and when they suggest more serious problems, and more.