Editor’s Note: In this blog series, we are getting to know the members of the Texas Young Lawyers Association Board of Directors. TYLA, commonly called the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas, works to facilitate the administration of justice, foster respect for the law, and advance the role of the legal profession in serving the public. All TYLA programs are accomplished through the volunteer efforts of its board and committee members, with the cooperation of local affiliate young lawyers associations. Learn more at tyla.org.
Name: Taylor S. Joeckel
Firm: KoonsFuller, P.C.
Area of Law You Practice: Family Law
Position Held in TYLA: District 5, Place 1 Director
How did you get involved in bar service? One of my mentors, Sally Pretorius, encouraged me to get involved in bar service as a young attorney. Additionally, I think it is important to be involved and serve our community by providing legal services to the public.
What is your favorite TYLA project and why?
Attorney Wellness is my favorite TYLA project because I think it is incredibly relevant to the profession today. It’s no secret that many people in the legal profession suffer from a high level of stress, anxiety, depression, addiction, and many other mental health issues. No one is immune to mental health challenges, and it is important to emphasize wellness in the workplace and encourage our colleagues to seek help when they need it.
The Attorney Wellness hub on the TYLA website (see http://texaslawyercare.tyla.org/) is an incredible tool for anyone suffering from mental health issues. The site encourages healing and provides assurance to people that they are not alone in their struggles and there are resources to help.
What tips can you give to other attorneys to manage stress? Step away and take time for yourself when you need it. At the end of the day, being an attorney is very stressful and it is important to separate the stress from your personal life. Allowing the two to intertwine too deeply can cause an elevated amount of constant stress and pressure.
I also believe that taking care of your physical health can incredibly benefit your mental health. When work gets too stressful, take a run or go on a long walk. Again, it is important to take time and care for yourself.
What is a piece of advice you would give new lawyers or law students?
For law students, keep pushing through and work hard! But, also, enjoy the process and get to know your classmates. You will end up practicing with some of them in the future so it is important to maintain those relationships.
For new lawyers, learn what you can now and jump at any learning opportunity that is offered to you—it will pay off in the near future.
What do you do in your spare time?
In my spare time, I enjoy being with my husband and our family and friends! We have also taken up biking (thank you, quarantine) so that has been a fun new activity for us!