3 Lifehacks for Surviving Law School
If you finally made it into law school, take a short moment to pat yourself on the back. You should congratulate yourself -- or console yourself. Law school can be a life-changing experience, but it can also seem life-threatening -- at least in terms of your sanity.
Below is a list of tips and lifehacks to help you excel throughout your legal education.
1. Develop a Routine to Avoid Slacking Off
Inevitably, you'll find a study pace that works for you ... and then you'll get lazy. But resist this temptation to slack off. If you do, this negative momentum will stick with you for your remaining years and your grades will fall.
Instead of slacking off, develop a study routine. For example, plan on spending set hours of the day in the library. By developing stable habits, you'll avoid living in constant crisis mode when exams approach.
2. Use Hornbooks and Study Guides
Don't feel ashamed about using study guides. Practicing attorneys have the practice guides (the real world equivalents) and use them quite frequently. If they're good enough for actual lawyers, they're good enough for you.
Hornbooks and study guides Distill the law into condensed versions of what you need to know. Also, consider purchasing bar preparation books ahead of time. You'll find that bar materials are basically distilled versions of your core classes. If nothing else, bar prep books present comprehensive outlines of all basic legal subjects.
By now, you're already sinking under the cost of your law school books. Fortunately, first year law school topics hardly ever change in material (with the exception of Constitutional Law). So you won't miss much by acquiring an older edition of a study guide.
3. Find a Mentor and Network With Influential People
Let's face it. You know almost nothing. But the good news is that plenty of people have been where you are. Do yourself a solid and find a mentor. A quasi-mentor figure once offered a piece of advice I'll never forget: "Life is too short to learn by your own mistakes."
When you find a mentor, its unlikely she will tell you anything that has real application to your law school studies. But your mentor is an investment for when you step into real practice. The best mentors will even be able to open doors to great paying jobs.
- How to Find a Mentor: 6 Steps to Finding a Professional Mentor (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
- 6 Tricks & Tips to Surviving 1L (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
- Outlines 101: How to Write the Best Legal Study Outlines Ever (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
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