We made it through the first semester of law school! Woo-hoo! I have so much to say about it! I made this post, 5 Lessons for Your First Semester of Law School with Brumate because law school can be challenging. I mean, I literally cried every week for a month and contemplated dropping out. Not because the material is hard but because I realized I am a perfectionist. In law school, you are surrounded by a hundred other A-type, perfectionists. The drive to be the best can be overwhelming at times.
Taking the time to reflect on my law school experience has been helpful for me going forward. I created goals for my spring semester, implemented strategies, and pinpointed areas for improvement in order to succeed. I am very happy with my fall grades; however, you can always be better.
My main goals for this semester are to update my outline regularly, network (virtually) with my classmates, mentors, and professors, and take better care of myself. I listed these goals out below as "lessons" for you and how Brumate helps with that! Hopefully, your first semester can be better than mine!
Disclaimer: This post, 5 Lessons for Your First Semester of Law School is sponsored by Brumate. As always, all opinions are my own.
1. JOIN AN ORG
Your first year of law school is beyond stressful. It is important that you bond with others that have similar interests as you! Joining a student organization is a great way for you to get involved at your law school. Orgs offer great opportunities to get involved in the school community, find internships, and make friends. PLUS, it is a great way to meet lawyers and scholars in your field of interest. Basically, it is a fantastic way to network, which is critical to becoming a successful lawyer.
Sometimes student organizations provide support for 1L students to learn more about law school, test-taking, and the bar exam. I am apart of the Sports and Entertainment Law Society, Black Law Student Association, and Business Law Society. I highly recommend taking this lesson to heart because it helped me so much.
2. STUDY SMARTER
Studying smarter, not harder! That is the key to success when studying the law. As a 1L, grades are the only thing that matters. Let's be honest here. The field of law is so vast and broad. There aren't enough hours in the day to learn everything and do all the studying you truly need to do. The biggest lesson I learned during my first semester was how and where to allocate my efforts to maximize my success in my classes and to position myself for a job offer following graduation. Some tools that helped me study smarter are listed below:
A smart notebook;
A smart pen;
Dictate function in word; and
The Hopsulator TRíO has been a lifesaver for me! It is the most versatile can-cooler in the world. It fits all your favorite 16oz craft cans, comes with a freezable adapter for 12oz cans, and with one quick switch turns into a 16oz pint glass.
I love to put 16oz or 12oz cans of cold brew coffee in my Hopsulator TRíO! It is perfect for when I am studying at my desk or attending class virtually! My favorite color of the Hopsulator TRíO is the Dark Aura. It is so vibrant. See the pictures below for what it looks like.
Pro Tip: When you are done studying, you can put your favorite can of hard cider or seltzer in the Hopsulator TRíO to keep it cold! Who likes warm alcoholic beverages? Nobody.
3. CREATE A ROUTINE
As I said, there aren't enough hours in the day to accomplish everything. But you can stay on track if you create a routine and stick to it! I have a planner and carefully plan out my week each Sunday. This was a lesson I learned my first semester. I penciled in time to prepare outlines, brief cases, go to org. meetings, attend review sessions, and blog work (because that pays for law school.)
Law school is a full-time job so you want to treat it like one! This means creating a routine so that you can succeed in law school while still having a life.
4. PRIORITIZE WELLNESS
At my school, we have wellness days to take a pause in learning to focus on wellness, self-care, and health. They are non-instructional wellness days that support mental well-being. Prioritizing wellness is a lesson that I learned last semester.
The best way to focus on school is to take time away and come back. Self-care is one of the best ways to be successful in law school. I practice self-care by working out and keeping my body hydrated with the Brumate Fifth 25oz Canteen. I read that exercise is a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment. It relieves tension and stress, boosts physical and mental energy, and enhances well-being through the release of endorphins. Drinking water can prevent dehydration, a condition that can cause unclear thinking, result in mood change, cause your body to overheat, and lead to constipation and kidney stones. You want all the mental energy and clear thinking you can get in law school!
The Brumate Fifth 25oz Canteen not only keeps me hydrated but also doubles as a liquor canteen with a shot glass built-in! I like to pour my favorite liquor inside for when my friends and I have Wellness Wednesday Happy Hour! The canteen is the world's first triple-insulated bottle. I highly recommend that you get one for yourself! My favorite style is the Onyx Leopard. Check it out for yourself!
5. FORM A STUDY GROUP
This seems silly but making friends is important because it helps you form study groups. Law school, especially during the pandemic, can be isolating. The experience is intense and competitive. My school has the most supportive classmates but other schools tend to have students that look out for themselves. This is where a study group comes in.
Study groups provide you with the opportunity to discuss legal concepts with other people to improve understanding and retention. There are three people in my study group and it has been so beneficial for me. Each of us has unique insight, perspective, and knowledge and that helps the group tackle whatever legal problem or case we are facing.
One lesson I learned during my first semester is to pick friends who are well-prepared for class and have similar academic goals. We all keep each other on track and lift each other up when the workload increases!
I hope these lessons help you with your first semester! Comment down below if you have additional lessons or comments on the post!
Until Next Time,
“Your life is happening now. Make it amazing!”