Nora Riva Bergman and Chelsy Castro | Research-Based Strategies To Boost Wellness and Build Resilience

Nora Bergman

Nora Riva Bergman is a business coach, Certified Practice Advisor at Atticus, and the Founder of Real Life Practice, where she helps attorneys balance their life and law practice. Nora has practiced as an employment law attorney and certified mediator and has served as a Professor at both Stetson University College of Law and the University of South Florida, teaching courses in alternative dispute resolution and negotiation. As a licensed attorney for more than 25 years, she understands the frustrations attorneys face every day and is committed to helping them change their lives for the better.

Chelsy CastroChelsy Castro is the CEO and Founder of Castro Jacobs Psychotherapy and Consulting (CJPC). As a lawyer-turned-psychotherapist, she’s an expert in lawyer well-being who teaches individuals and organizations how to build the skills they need to achieve their goals in a healthy, productive way. Chelsy’s publications and trainings focus on science-based skills and strategies for improving performance and increasing well-being in high-profit, high-pressure professions.

Nora and Chelsy are Co-authors of the book 50 Lessons for Happy Lawyers: Boost Wellness. Build Resilience. Yes, You Can!, which is the most recent book in Nora’s 50 Lessons for Lawyers series. This book raises awareness on mental health and well-being challenges in the legal profession and equips individual lawyers with the skills needed to take action and live a happier life.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Nora Riva Bergman shares why she wrote a book for lawyers on the topic of happiness and wellness
  • How did Chelsy Castro transition from a lawyer to a psychotherapist, consultant, and performance coach?
  • The story of how Nora and Chelsy began collaborating
  • Chelsy and Nora talk about an organization’s responsibility for its people
  • What’s the difference between wellness and well-being?
  • Chelsy’s favorite lesson from the book: identifying your invisible Saber-toothed tigers
  • Nora discusses how the lesson on resilience has appeared in her coaching work
  • Why lawyers should question the status quo and recognize their ability to respond rather than react
  • The importance of identifying your “why” and taking small steps toward change

In this episode…

A 2016 study from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation shows that 28% of lawyers struggle with some level of depression, and 19% demonstrate symptoms of anxiety. On top of that, a Legal Trends Report from 2018 tells us that 75% of lawyers frequently work outside of business hours, and 39% said that working long hours has affected their personal lives. Since the emergence of the pandemic, these numbers are likely higher. So what can we do, whether on an individual or institutional level, to support lawyers’ mental health and well-being?

Nora Riva Bergman and Chelsy Castro believe lawyers deserve to lead happy, healthy, and resilient lives. That’s why they co-authored the book 50 Lessons for Happy Lawyers, where they share tools and strategies to help lawyers support their health and well-being. Traditionally, the idea of lawyers’ physical and mental health has been swept under the rug, but now, Nora and Chelsy believe that the legal profession is at an inflection point — and they’re helping create change one small step at a time.

In this episode of The Lawyer’s Edge Podcast, Elise Holtzman is joined by Nora Riva Bergman, Certified Practice Advisor at Atticus and Founder of Real Life Practice, and Chelsy Castro, Founder of Castro Jacobs Psychotherapy and Consulting (CJPC). Nora and Chelsy share why they wrote 50 Lessons for Happy Lawyers, their favorite lessons from the book, and strategies lawyers can use to invest in their well-being and create lasting change.

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