Avoid LSAT Burnout Using These Tips
Law schools love to advertise the fact that they consider all of an applicant’s qualities in making admissions decisions. While this may be true, the fact remains that almost all law schools care most about your LSAT score and your undergraduate GPA. It is called the “Law School Admissions Test” after all. That means you’ll need to put significant time into studying for the LSAT to get the best score possible. Studying for the LSAT doesn’t mean giving up all semblance of a balanced life. It should actually be quite the opposite!
Check out these tips to avoid LSAT burnout and maintaining a balanced and healthy life while studying.
Avoid LSAT Burnout Using These Tips
1. Take care of your physical health.
Maintaining your physical health should be your paramount concern while studying for the LSAT, during law school, while studying for the bar, and while practicing law. No schoolwork or job is ever going to be more important than your health! Many students study for the LSAT while they are still in undergrad or while they are working full time. If this sounds like your situation, having a regimented schedule can help you maintain a balanced life without your work/school or LSAT study habits suffering.
No matter what your day looks like, the time you allot for studying for the LSAT should include more than just practice problems and lectures. In addition to work, school, or your other responsibilities, you should still actively make time for exercise, cooking healthy meals, and adequate sleep. If you think you don’t have time to do these things and study for the LSAT, examine your schedule to see where you waste time. Do scroll through social media for 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes before bed? There’s nothing wrong with taking time to relax, but perhaps you could use some of that time to go for a walk or do some yoga instead.
The LSAT is a very important test. Being honest and discerning with yourself about the time you waste and what you could be doing to improve your schedule is important. This doesn’t mean you need to do intense workouts every day, cook extravagant meals, and get 10 hours of sleep. It does mean that studying for the LSAT shouldn’t cause your physical health to suffer. You know yourself best. Do what will be right for you!
2. Take care of your mental health.
Maintaining your mental health will always be important. Studying for the LSAT is no exception. LSAT studying and the work you will do in law school and as a lawyer can be challenging or even emotionally taxing. Try to be cognizant of what things are helpful to you and what things make you more stressed out. Maybe too much caffeine makes you anxious. Or perhaps reading too much about other people’s LSAT study habits online makes you feel like you aren’t doing enough.
Instead, try focusing on what makes you more productive and feel excited about the prospect of attending law school. Your physical health and mental health are connected, and getting enough sleep and taking care of yourself will help you maintain a productive and balanced schedule. Additionally, notice what motivates and encourages you. For example, tell yourself you’ll spend some much needed time with friends after taking a practice test. Or, do some research on the different perks of various law schools.
Most importantly, know yourself. If you need to stop studying for the LSAT or seek professional help, there’s no shame in that! The LSAT and law school will always be there, so take care of yourself first.
3. Create a schedule
We already talked about all the extra things you can do to maintain a healthy lifestyle while studying for the LSAT. Maybe you’re thinking, “how am I supposed to do all of that?” The answer is: create a schedule and stick to it! Check out our posts on How to Create an LSAT Study Schedule and When to Take an LSAT Study Break (also see more on this in tip #6!). You should schedule a time for things like relaxing, hanging out with friends, exercising, cooking, breaks, and studying. It might seem silly to schedule a time for relaxing, but trust us, it will make your life easier!
4. Quality over quantity
There is no point in “studying” for five hours if you only spend one hour working hard. Eliminate distractions and be disciplined during your study time. When you are studying for the LSAT, that is the only thing you should be doing. When you are not studying for the LSAT, don’t think about the LSAT!
Again, this is where sticking to a schedule comes in handy. For example, if you only schedule 4 hours of studying into a Saturday, and you want to take a practice exam, you’d better be focused! We recommend finding somewhere where people won’t bother you and putting your phone away or turning it off. Here are some additional tips for studying smart for the LSAT!
5. Tell others when you’ll be studying.
Nothing creates a distraction like a loud roommate or a friend texting you to come to hang out with them. We recommend telling the people closest to you about when you’ll be studying each day. This is particularly true with people you live with if you’ll be studying at home. This means you’ll be able to ensure your study space is quiet and distraction-free.
The same advice goes for communicating with your friends and family. Your friend that knows you are always studying for the LSAT on Thursdays from 5-9 PM will know not to invite you to dinner. Sometimes studying for the LSAT can be tough, but when you have a group of people who support your goals, it is a bit easier!
6. Take breaks!
Our last tip to avoid LSAT burnout is simple: take breaks! Make sure you schedule breaks from studying and your other responsibilities. And when you are on those breaks, try not to worry about studying. After all, spending time with friends or family and doing things you enjoy is the key to maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Taking breaks will also help you avoid burning out. Showing up to the LSAT with no energy or will left to take the exam is not what you want. As with studying, make your breaks count!
The LSAT is an important and often daunting part of the law school admissions process. We know that with a little preparation and discipline, you’ll do great!