Our Spiritual Dimension
The National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being included spiritual well-being as a dimension for us to examine. Personally, growing up as a minister’s daughter, I’ve wrestled with what “spirituality” means to me, while trying to carve out a personal identity separate from my parents’ beliefs and expectations. The Task Force defines “spirituality”—in the well-being context—as “developing a sense of meaningfulness and purpose in all aspects of life.”
Positive psychologist, Dr. Isaac Prilleltensky, defines “meaning” as “making a difference in the world through passion, devotion, dedication, achievement, and commitment to a set of values and beliefs.”
Emily Esfahani Smith wrote a great book called The Power of Meaning: Finding Fulfillment in a World Obsessed with Happiness in which she describes four pillars of meaning:
Belonging: feeling connected to others
Purpose: contributing to the world
Storytelling: placing past experiences in context through crafting a life narrative
Transcendence: stepping into a world beyond ourselves
Spiritual Dimension Resources:
- For a deeper dive into cultivating our spiritual well-being dimension, consider exploring Chapter 10 of The Flourishing Lawyer.
- Also consider checking out:
- Benjamin Sells, The Soul of the Law
- Emily Esfahani Smith, The Power of Meaning: Finding Fulfillment in a World Obsessed with Happiness
Reflection Exercise: What does “spirituality” mean to you? Can you write down ten words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs) that describe what gives your personal life meaning and purpose? Can you write down ten words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs) that describe what gives your professional life meaning and purpose? Any overlaps?