Amber Kornreich’s article “Kindness & Professionalism” was published in the August edition of The Florida Bar Family Law Section’s monthly newsletter, the “FAMSEG.”
Amber’s article is re-printed below and the FAMSEG is accessible here: FAMSEG August 2021 News From The Family Law Section Of The Florida Bar (constantcontact.com)
Amber also serves as Secretary for The Florida Bar Family Law Section Publications Committee and assists with editing articles for the Section’s statewide Family Law publications. She served as a co-editor for the August FAMSEG.
| “Kindness & Professionalism”
August is Kindness Month and a valuable opportunity to reflect on our professional conduct as Family Lawyers. A recent study from the University of California at Berkeley has shown that kind people report higher self-esteem, less depression and anxiety, and better overall physical health . Being kind can make us happier, more fulfilled individuals and also better, more in-tune, counselors, advocates, and colleagues.
Intrinsic to our responsibility to practice professionally is a duty to be kind. Encouragement of kind and respectful behavior is a main theme of the Bounds of Advocacy Goals of Family Lawyers in Florida, published by The Florida Bar Family Law Section. The Bounds of Advocacy include goals such as: “An Attorney should strive to lower the emotional level of family disputes by treating counsel and the Parties with respect”; (1.1) “An Attorney should refuse to participate in vindictive conduct and should strive to lower the emotional level of a family dispute by treating all other participants with respect”; (2.2) and “An attorney should accord clients respect” (3.1) .
Kindness can open new possibilities of happiness and success for Family Lawyers and clients. Taking steps to be kinder leads to greater personal satisfaction and increased professionalism. The American Bar Association suggests that building an “empathetic mindset,” by slowing down and taking the time to appreciate other points of view, even when those views are not obvious or compatible with our own, can increase lawyers’ productivity and performance, drive client satisfaction, and ultimately lead to greater success .
Being kinder to ourselves, our colleagues, and our clients is a privilege and responsibility of a professional Family Lawyer.
 How Kindness Fits Into a Happy Life (berkeley.edu) Bounds of Advocacy Goals for Family Lawyers in Florida (familylawfla.org) What Is Empathy? Why Does It Matter in the Practice of Law? (americanbar.org)