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10 Tips for Avoiding Burnout While Prepping for the LSAT

If you’re dreaming of a legal career, then you already know just how impactful your LSAT results will be on your education, your job prospects, and everything else. There’s a good chance, then, that you’re doing everything you possibly can to study for the LSAT, including devoting all your time and sacrificing things like sleep, exercise, and fun. This level of intensity is supported by the online “grind” culture of aspiring lawyers and other professionals who insist you should be devoting every ounce of energy to studying if you want to succeed.

However, such an approach is highly misguided, and is all but guaranteed to lead to study fatigue, burnout, and possibly even collapse. Rather than prepping constantly, you should be focused on prepping healthfully, intelligently, and well. In this article, we’ll offer ten tips for achieving a balanced LSAT prep regimen so you can avoid burnout and actually maximize results. These tips are based on actual evidence gathered from a study of grad students studying for standardized tests.

1. Exercise

If you’re struggling with your energy level, this might seem counterintuitive. However, exercising regularly actually creates more energy by regulating your body’s energetic and hormonal cycles. Exercise also creates endorphins, which keep you happier and more motivated as you go about your LSAT prep.

2. Take some days off

While it might be tempting to try to work every day, it’s important that you regularly take full off days. This gives your entire physical and mental system a chance to reset and recharge, which will allow you to come back to your study regimen strong and prepared to do the work.

3. Limit your daily test prep hours

Just like working every day, it can be tempting to consider LSAT prep your full-time job, devoting eight or more hours per day. However, studying for the LSAT isn’t like a normal job—it’s much more energetically and mentally draining. The gains you’re likely to see from your studying are subject to the law of diminishing returns. Going beyond about four or five hours in a day isn’t likely to help you as much as devoting shorter concentrated sessions on a regular basis.

4. Take regular breaks

Though you might have an instinct to power through your moments of fatigue, it’s actually important that you build regular breaks into your study routine. Even just 5-15 minutes of rest, no matter how you spend it, will help you recharge your batteries so you can hit the ground running as soon as you get back to work.

5. Build a support system

Let’s face it. Spending all day studying for the LSAT can be lonely and can even lead to depression. This doesn’t just have an impact on your mood—it also has an impact on your energy level and your mental agility. You should work hard to build a support system of friends, family members, and fellow LSAT preppers whom you can rely on to uplift you through the tough moments. Socializing isn’t just a luxury—it’s a human need, and having other people to support you through this hard season of life will help you stay on top of your game.

6. Don’t forget to have fun

Fun isn’t a luxury either—it’s another human need. It might seem like living as a monk throughout the duration of your LSAT prep is the best way to go, but it’s sure to lead to burnout before too long. Building fun into your routine—as a form of mental maintenance and even as a reward for your hard work—will keep you psychologically and physically healthy, and will help you stay motivated.

7. Eat healthy

Eating healthy as you prep for the LSAT can be surprisingly hard to do. When you’re putting in long hours, it can be tempting to go for an easy pleasurable option from a vending machine or a fast-food restaurant. But maintaining a healthy diet will actually help your body sustain greater energy levels, and it will leave you feeling better throughout your LSAT prep.

8. Minimize distractions

Something we all do to get ourselves through challenging tasks is seek distractions. These might come in the form of music, television, or other forms of stimulation. But these things actually drain our energy levels and, beyond that, they shrink the benefits we’re getting from the time and energy we’re committing to our test prep. Cultivating a distraction-free environment will promote more effective studying and greater peace of mind.

9. Focus on sleep

By this point in your life, you’ve probably had to pull many all-nighters to finish term papers, cram for tests, and fulfill other deadline-based obligations. However, sacrificing sleep is one of the worst things you can do for physical and mental performance, and it’s not sustainable in the long run. If you want to get the most from your LSAT prep, you should be sure to get a good night’s rest every night.

10. Get a tutor

Working with an expert LSAT tutor can help you in a variety of ways. Qualified tutors know the test—and what’s required to study for it—like the backs of their hands. They can help you design a customized study regimen that will allow you to make the most of your LSAT prep. And a really good tutor will go beyond that, helping you to stay upbeat and motivated as you work through the long process of prepping for this challenging test.


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Prepping for the LSAT isn’t a sprint. It’s a marathon. And as everyone who’s run a marathon knows, if you want to get survive and succeed, you need to take care of yourself. It might be tempting to sacrifice various forms of well-being as you throw everything you have at the LSAT, but remembering to take care of yourself in the ways we’ve listed above will actually help you prep more efficiently, effectively, and healthfully. This is the best thing you can do for yourself as you try to get the best possible result on the LSAT.