I’ve dipped my toe into bar prep and will start fully on Monday. Preparing for the bar is a daunting task. It feels like the learning equivalent of sprinting a marathon. However, that doesn’t mean you get to ignore your own wellness. Working long hours is something that’s not going to go away with a career in law. That’s why I will be focusing on bringing balance to my bar prep while still putting in the hours.
A recent post on the ABA’s website rubbed me the wrong way with its somewhat jokey take on bar prep as a period of being a hermit. The author takes a stance that everything else needs to wait, saying:
“Unless you can deal with bringing food over and testing me with flashcards while we quickly eat, and then you leave immediately afterward, we’ll have to put everything off until August.”
This attitude is an unrealistic long-term approach to working full-time and an unhealthy road to burnout. Bar prep is a full-time job. But even demanding full-time jobs leave time for family and friends. I’ll be prepping for the bar full-time this summer and it will be a lot of work. But I’ll be working on taking care of myself and preserving the support system that helped me through law school at the same time.
Walking can boost your energy, mood, and thinking. Walking in nature has even more benefits. Taking regular breaks that include walking will be a key part of maintaining my stamina for studying.
exposure to nature has been linked to a host of benefits, including improved attention, lower stress, better mood, reduced risk of psychiatric disorders and even upticks in empathy and cooperation.American Psychological Association
Friends and family are an important support system. Instead of shutting out the outside world, I find it helpful to stay connected. One benefit of having a toddler in your life is that they don’t care about things like law school and the bar exam; they just want to be with you in the moment. Staying connected, even if it feels distracting at times, will help me build a healthy work-life balance that I can continue into practice.
Friends also play a significant role in promoting your overall health.The Mayo Clinic
The bar exam is an important and stressful milestone. However, work doesn’t stop after it. It’s just the beginning of my career. So I go forward, determined to put in the hours needed but to do so in a healthy way.
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