How To Start Studying EARLY For The Bar Exam

Daniel Garrett writes in with a guest article on how to start studying early for the bar exam. Daniel provides expert tutoring for the California Bar Exam and the Uniform Bar Exam at BarWinners. Stay until the end for a special offer to work with Daniel.

If you plan on taking the bar exam several months out and want to get a jump start on your studying, there are a few key areas to focus on as you begin your studies in earnest.

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Feeling Worried or Anxious Waiting for Bar Results?

First two weeks after the bar exam: Excited over congratulatory meals even though you haven’t passed yet

In between: Alternating between boredom and nightmares that remind you that you already took the bar exam and it can’t hurt you anymore

Last two weeks before bar results: HELP ME

anxiety waiting for bar results

In your desperation, you seek advice regardless of who it is…

You: “How do I handle the post-exam stress and anxiety of waiting for bar results?”

Your drunk uncle: “Don’t dwell on it… Trust in yourself… Don’t think about your answers…”

You nod politely and close the door behind you.

One problem: Our brains don’t always listen to reason! It’s hard not to think about the most important exam of your career.

In your most private moments, when all is still, you get flashbacks to the exam, relive the things you did wrong, and blow it up to the worst proportions.

The smallest error, realizing that you answered a few MBE questions wrong or made one misstatement in an entire essay, can seem like the difference between passing and failing. (“It WAS spousal testimonial privilege, not marital communications privilege! FUCK”)

You can’t just tell your brain to “stop thinking about it”… It’s inevitable that you’ll think about it. But you can change HOW you think about it and ease the agony a bit.

After screaming into your pillow, try these three ways to reframe your situation to reduce waiting anxiety (more details follow):

  1. The worst case: What’s the absolute worst that could happen?
  2. Reducing anticipation: Mentally push back D-Day
  3. Don’t be miserable in advance
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Should you forget about essays and just focus on the MBE (“auto-pass” with the MBE)?

No, this approach has a few potential inaccuracies and dangers.

Below are four of the dangers and a better approach to take instead if you want to prioritize a few areas.

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What to Do After the Bar Exam to Live a Normal Life Again (21 Fun Ideas)

Weeks and months of insanity putting on life on hold to study for the bar exam.

The onslaught of psychologically tormenting questions.

It’s over.

The hard-fought battle has ended. The dust has settled. There’s nothing left. No rewards. Just palpable silence (filled only with “how do you think you did? oh wow”) and an empty space in your heart. What were you fighting for this whole time?

It’s hard to believe it’s over, isn’t it?

We get attached to the struggle.

Now yet another difficult part called “waiting” begins. It might be harder than the actual prep. After the shell shock that was the bar exam, what do you do?

mixed feelings after bar exam

What is “free time” again? Is it edible? Will life be the same?

Some people seem to be completely happy with this state of being, while others get post-bartum depression. Let’s recover from your mixed feelings and bring life back to normal.

Here are 21 ideas on what to do (and a few things NOT to do) to stay sane now that the bar exam is over (ideas that have nothing to do with studying for the exam “just in case”).

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Admire the Buttcrack (and 9 Other Last Minute Tips for the Bar Exam)

Ahh shit… You utter the first word of the day as a dying declaration.

Because it’s time. Is it really that real? Let’s do this!

Implementing, practicing, and doing. I hope, by doing those things consistently, you’ve made solid progress!

Maybe you don’t feel ready. The good news is that the more prepared you actually are, the less you feel prepared. The bad news is that the other way isn’t necessarily true.

Not all hope is lost, ye weary traveler. It’s time to put your training to the test.

For now, go in with a “might as well, even if I don’t feel ready” or a “you never know until you try” attitude.

You'll never know unless you try

You’ll be able to say, “I’m glad I tried.”

You’ve worked hard these past weeks and months. You’ve come all this way. Let’s finish it without any hiccups at the very end.

We don’t want a “failure of the last mile” to undo all we’ve done up until now.

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