I have been a solicitor for nearly 25 years and throughout that time I have specialised in family law so I understand the demands of the job.
For thirteen years I ran my own law practice offering clients specialist family law advice and family mediation. I have a had a career-long interest in mental health issues and the long term impact that working with clients who are in distress can have on family lawyers. It was that interest that led me to train to be a therapeutic counsellor and I now work as a Consultant Solicitor, Family Mediator and Therapist and Professional Supervisor for members of the legal profession.
I set up Just Talk Supervision because I am passionate about providing professional supervision to those who provide professional support to others. Outside the legal profession little is known or understood about the demands placed on lawyers and within the legal profession there is very little pastoral support available. I provide supervision to lawyers who practice in family, criminal and private client work.
Being a lawyer can be a lonely experience; often smaller firms have only one family or criminal lawyer working on their own and within larger firms the family and criminal law department is often treated differently to other departments.
Every day we are working with clients who are going through an emotionally stressful time. Often our clients have been rejected, alienated or abused by someone they loved or are charged with crimes that involve violence. The support we provide our clients is rarely limited to filling in forms, writing letters or going to court. We become their ally in a time of crisis and they often depend on us for emotional support. The provision of that support however can come at the expense of our own mental health and wellbeing unless we look after ourselves professionally – that is where professional supervision comes in.
It is also important to recognise that there is often a lot more going on in client files than just a legal process. I for one have noticed that some clients or lawyers are easier to work with than others and some cases affect me more than others and it is rarely the complexity of the law that causes these difficulties or challenges. It often the relationships we foster with our clients or the opposite side that cause stress or anxiety. Professional Legal Supervision gives you the opportunity to discuss your thoughts and experiences and examine what is really going on for you when working with your client or the other side of a case. It also gives you some much needed ‘me time’ whereby you are the person doing the talking and someone else is doing the listening.
As your supervisor I will work with you to explore the aspects of your work that you find challenging. I may invite you to challenge your own thinking and perspectives, and I will offer you the opportunity to dig deep into what might be happening for you when you sit at your desk to prepare a complicated document, or meet with a client who is emotionally challenging throughout the meeting. We will explore why you find some clients easier to work with than others and why you may experience having a ‘block’ on a particular file. I offer a confidential, non-judgemental space where you can talk about the challenges you face knowing that you are talking to someone who has faced her own too.
Professional Legal Supervision is designed to help support you whilst you help support others . It is designed to support you work towards achieving the success you deserve without the work you do costing you your personal wellbeing or mental health. .
If you are interested in exploring the benefits of supervision and want to know more please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 01274 581100. All enquiries will be treated in the strictest confidence. Appointments are available either face to face or via Zoom or MS Teams.