On Thursday mornings last fall, janitors cleared marble tables out of the conference room at Hale and Dorr L.L.P. and arranged the plush chairs in a circle. Thirty to 40 lawyers, from the managing partner on down, gathered in their stocking feet to focus on their little toes. They were attending a “mindfulness” seminar, based on the teachings of New Age guru Jon Kabat-Zinn.

“It’s not that Hale and Dorr believes in meditation,” says Brenda Fingold, the partner in charge of professional development. “It’s that we care deeply about managing stress. Some people manage stress by running, and that’s why we have a fitness center. There are other people whom this will help.”

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