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How to Manage When Things are Unmanageable: Time Management Tips

Life is busy for a law school student. Between courses and clinics and studying and sleeping and networking and trying to have nightlife once in a while, things can quickly spin out of control.

One minute it’s the beginning of the semester, the next it’s exam time and you feel like your life is unmanageable–time flies. You feel like a hurricane has swept through and blown the last three months into chaos. What’s a law school student to do?

Well, if you’re singer-songwriter and renowned beach bum Jimmy Buffett, you simply “breathe in, breathe out and move on,” as he famously sang in his hit song about Hurricane Katrina. But if you’re a law school student–which you are–you need to put together a plan.

Here are three time-management tips to help you get started:

Maximize your strengths

Are you a morning or night person? Do you hit the proverbial 2 p.m. daily wall, when your energy runs out and the only way to re-energize is to take a nap? Are you easily distracted by prime-time network television?

The key to an effective study routine is maximizing your strengths. Not a morning person? Don’t try studying in the morning. Hit the 2 p.m. wall? That might be a good time to plan to be home for a power nap every day. Love prime-time sitcoms? Then plan to have your studying done before they start.

Don’t try to force yourself into a study routine. Instead, build a study routine that works for you–and stick to it.

Build a list or block out some time–just make sure to commit 

Are you a list-builder or a time-blocker? Knowing which type appeals more to you will help you effectively prioritize and accomplish all that you need to do.

List-builders are the type of people who carry around pieces of paper (or iPads) containing lists of all the things they need to accomplish that day. As they get them done, they cross them off the list. Time-blockers tell themselves they’re going to spend X hours on tasks each day–and then they do. Which are you? Decide and stick with your system.

Set your own deadlines

There’s something exhilarating about procrastinating. But it’s also exhausting. So from now on, set your own deadlines–and set them to be at least a day earlier than necessary. You’ll feel like you have more control over things.


About the Author

Sumita Dalal is the Founder and CEO of FindMyLawTutor, the largest and most trusted website and online portal that connect law students with law tutors for success in law school. Whether preparing for the LSAT, are currently a law student or are studying for the bar exam, FindMyLawTutor makes finding a law tutor fast and easy.

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