Staying Positive While You Study

The LSAT can be discouraging. Getting ten percent of the questions wrong puts you roughly in the top one percent of a self-selected group of people who have been to college and gone so far as to consider law school. That means it’s a hard test. No one is immune to the LSAT’s frustrations, but it’s important to stay positive as you study.

Negative thoughts only get in the way. When you doubt whether you can really tackle the LSAT, you’re fighting your own thoughts as well as the LSAT. The LSAT is enough on its own. Don’t make it even harder.

As you study, break things down into pieces. Get your score out of your head. Focus on whatever concept you’re studying and on that concept alone. Your goal should be to really understand whatever little thing you’re working on.

This is one reason it’s bad to take too many practice tests early in your studies. You need to avoid worrying about a 180 and really learn the concepts. At this point, the score will only get in your head. Also, don’t worry about whether you’re answering questions quick enough; that’ll come later. Free yourself to take your time with the lessons and really learn them.

Later on, when you take more practice tests, you’re bound to have disappointing tests. Again, it’s important to not let a disappointing result get to you. Shake off the sting of the score. Then, review every question, passage and game as its own individual thing.

As you review, part of what you’ll do is figure out why you got questions wrong. When you do, don’t beat yourself up. Focus on the learning experience. It’s not about what you did wrong last time, it’s about what you’ll do differently next time.

Finally, studying can’t be your entire life. You need to commit lots of time to studying, but you also need to have other things going on. Plan some activities that will get your mind off the LSAT entirely over the next couple months. The gains to your sanity will more than make up for the lost studying time.

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