The Stages Of a Lawyer’s Vacation

Is there any day more relaxing than the Wednesday of vacation week? What if every day of vacation could be like that?

By Marc E. Gustafson

As we enter the post-Fourth of July dog days of summer, many of us are either just returning from vacation, leaving soon for a vacation or daydreaming about an upcoming vacation.  After recently returning from an annual “vacation” at the beach with my family and some friends (and I say “vacation” because we have 4- and 6-year-old boys), I spent some time thinking about the various stages of my time away.

Stage 1: Preparing to Leave Work Behind

The first stage begins even before vacation starts.  Undoubtedly, there is the mad rush of deadlines, scrambling to get projects to the stage where they can safely lie dormant for at least a week and trying to avoid calls/emails/incoming work that could completely upend your vacation plans.

If you can safely navigate away from the office without any major events, you can start to relax.  Well, maybe start to start to relax.  As most vacations begin on a Saturday or Sunday, there’s the rush of travel involving luggage, cars, airplanes, shuttles, boats and maybe all the above.

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I learned one thing last week: Wellness is about balance.

During wellness expert Laura Mahr’s NCBA Annual Meeting CLE session, attendees physically embraced wellness techniques.

By Josh McIntyre

It’s hard to avoid the topic of wellness in the legal world these days. Whether it’s a new ABA initiative, an article in last month’s N.C. State Bar Journal, or our own North Carolina Bar Association Annual Meeting, the good news is that the legal community locally and at large seems to be embracing the reality that the stress of our profession is high and we have to take intentional, mindful steps to promote a healthy workplace and lifestyle.

This topic was front and center for me last week, when nearly 700 NCBA members and guests came to Biltmore for our 2019 Annual Meeting. My department is responsible for this event, and our staff spent countless hours over the past year finding speakers, booking activities and setting up dinners and luncheons, nearly all of which included some aspect of our overarching theme of Wellness: Work, Mind, Body, Life.

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Demystifying Paralegal Credentials for Lawyers and Paralegals

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By Alicia Mitchell-Mercer

Recently, I overheard a discussion regarding whether attorneys understand the content of paralegal programs and the meaning of the post-nominal certification credentials you increasingly see behind paralegals’ names. One person responded that many fledgling paralegals don’t understand the difference between being certified and having a certificate, so how can attorneys be expected to understand these distinctions. While these issues may not seem pressing, they are important.

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