How To Manage Law School Imposter Syndrome - JD Advising
Looking for an affordable bar exam course with a high pass rate? Check out our course options here!
Named one of the fastest growing companies in the United States. Thank you for your support!
California Pro Bono Work, Manage Law School Imposter Syndrome

How To Manage Law School Imposter Syndrome

You’ve researched, applied, went to interviews, and finally received an acceptance letter into the law school of your dreams.  However, as your 1L year progresses, you start suddenly feeling like you’re somehow not supposed to be amongst your classmates. They all seem to be more accomplished and intelligent and seem to have their act more together than you. Do you belong in law school? The short answer: yes. You do belong in law school. What you’re experiencing is known as “imposter syndrome” and it’s actually very common amongst law school students. Imposter syndrome refers to the disbelief that your success is deserved because of your own efforts or skills. In this post, we cover ways to manage law school imposter syndrome.

How To Manage Law School Imposter Syndrome

Realize It’s Totally Normal

Imposter syndrome is something that many law students feel when making their way through their 1L year. Regardless of whether you want to acknowledge how students around you may be feeling, one thing is certain: most of your classmates have experienced imposter syndrome at one point or another. While those around you may not give off signals that he or she is struggling with imposter syndrome, it’s still there. While this may be hard to believe, students probably look at you and think “that person really has it together.” It’s the same way you look at students and think “wow they really have it figured out.” Everyone in law school is trying to put their best foot forward for a number of reasons. This can lead to feelings of self-doubt amongst classmates. In reality, both your and your classmates’ admissions were all based on the same criteria.

Monitor The Voice Inside Your Head

Be mindful of what the voice inside your head is saying and realize that thoughts differ from reality. While your thoughts may doubt your abilities, in reality, you’ve achieved and accomplished similar to (or more than!) what your classmates have. Consider this piece of advice put in a different context. If you imagine that the sky is green and believe the sky is green – does that make the sky green? No, it doesn’t. The sky will remain blue no matter how many times your mind may tell you that it is green. Even if you believe your mind and accept your thoughts as true– the sky will still not be green.

Name any professional athlete. Michael Jordan, Muhammed Ali, Michael Phelps, Venus Williams, Simone Biles – they’ve all experienced self-doubt at one point or another. However, each of these athletes eventually figured out a way to deal with their self-doubt and achieved greatness. It simply wasn’t beneficial to their performance. Don’t be afraid to do the same.

Tap Into Your Support System

Whether it’s with friends in law school (or outside of law school), your family, your spouse or partner, or law school staff – talking can help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your support system for some perspective on how you’re feeling. If they’re in law school, chances are they’re feeling the same or have felt similar in the past! Law school resources, including counselors, staff members, and professors can also help to ease your imposter syndrome anxiety. At the end of the day, realize that you got to where you are based on your abilities.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.