Eight Tips On How to Enjoy Studying For The Bar Exam
Studying for the bar exam does not have to be the worst time of your life. As the bar exam creeps closer and closer it looks worse and worse. There are nightmare stories from your peers about how awful studying is and how much of your life goes into it. No one looks forward to studying for the bar exam. But that does not mean you have to hate it. It is even possible for you to enjoy studying for the bar exam. Once you accept your fate, control your mindset, and insert things that make you happy into your study plan and you might find yourself enjoy studying for the bar exam.
Eight Tips On How to Enjoy Studying For The Bar Exam
1. Accept your fate
The bar is not fun. It is unfortunate that you have to put so much of your time into studying for it after completing three grueling years of law school. But if you want to be a lawyer, you have to take the bar exam.
Once you accept that you are going to spend a lot of time studying and not having hours of free time each day, the next few months the better. Yeah it will suck, but the less time you spend moping the better your studying will be. Accept that you have to study a lot and then you can start enjoying studying for the bar exam.
2. Control your mindset
If you go into studying the bar exam thinking you are going to hate it and telling yourself how horrible it is going to be then you are not going to have a great time with it. After you accept that studying is your full time job now, you might as well embrace it.
Go into each day positive and do your best to make the most of it. Take pride in your accomplishments and all that you are learning. Consider how lucky you are to have made it this far. Remind yourself of this and you may find yourself enjoying studying for the bar as you lay the foundations for your success.
3. Reward your accomplishments
Just getting to the point of being a bar applicant is an accomplishment in itself but getting through your daily study plan, or even a practice set of questions, are little accomplishments themselves. Reward yourself with a social media break, a favorite small piece of candy, or a text to a friend to give yourself little things to look forward to throughout the day.
Rewarding yourself for your accomplishments will also help you feel better about your progress. Did you do particularly well on a practice test? Maybe it’s time for some takeout. These little rewards will give you something to look forward to and help you enjoy studying for the bar exam.
4. Take care of your body
The better you feel physically then the better you will feel emotionally. Eat healthy foods that give you energy and get at least seven hours of sleep every night. Not only does your brain need the sleep but you will feel better if you are well rested.
You should also take time to exercise. It helps boost your mood and gives you an escape from studying. You may not exactly like physical activity but it is beneficial in multiple ways. Taking time out of your day to get your heart pumping and your muscles moving distracts you from the stress of the bar exam and rewards you with some pretty sweet endorphins.
Take a spin class, swim in your building’s pool, or even just go for a walk. Build these workouts into your schedule and you will feel better and enjoy studying for the bar exam. Try to do something you enjoy.
5. Schedule time for enjoyable activities
Just because you are studying for the bar exam does not mean you have to deprive yourself of all things joyful. Do not make the bar exam harder on yourself. Your studying should focus on how much material you are learning and retaining, now how many hours of studying you log. The days studying are bearable if you schedule time to do things you enjoy.
For daily enjoyment you can take half hour breaks to do things you enjoy like reading or maybe even cleaning up your apartment. You can also end all studying by a certain time or after you finish a set amount of work. Once you finish for the day do something you enjoy like watch an episode of a show you are following.
On the weekends you can still do fun activities like a happy hour, a trip to a museum, or even a movie night with a friend. Planning small, enjoyable things throughout your time studying not only makes studying for the bar more enjoyable but it also motivates you not to fall behind in your studying.
6. Take a full day, half-day, or quarter-day off
Many of our students will schedule time off into their schedule. Usually, they schedule a weekend day off. For example, they will simply agree to note study before noon on Sundays–or not study before 4:00 PM on Sundays, or not study at all on Sundays. They don’t necessarily schedule any activities. Rather, they don’t set an alarm and don’t check their emails or look at bar exam books. Students use this time to:
- Sleep in
- Do laundry
- Watch a show on Netflix
- Spend time with family
- Do nothing at all!
Having a “break” built into your schedule will reenergize you for the week to come. It can also serve as a reward for all of the hard work you have done.
7. Make your study space enjoyable
If you make the process of studying enjoyable then you may find yourself actually enjoying studying for the bar exam. If you love office supplies studying for the bar exam is the perfect excuse to treat yourself to some nice pens, highlighters, notebooks, and other organizers. You could even get yourself “job well done” stickers if it makes you feel better.
Your desk, or wherever you study, should be your own space that you control. Have it organized and relaxing. Play music if it helps you or have it by a sunny window if it makes you feel better. Studying multiple hours a day every day for weeks is not fun, so make the place you studying gives you some joy.
8. Lean on those you love
You may feel like you are studying for the bar exam alone but you aren’t. Do not forgo the people that support you. Express your concerns and feelings often to people you are close with so they don’t weigh you down. But avoid the people and drama that stresses you out.
Your close friends and family want to help you succeed and they know how hard you have it. Do reach out for emotional support while studying for the bar exam. Things are more enjoyable with the people we love. You can even enjoy studying for the bar exam.
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