WHY BEING A PERFECTIONIST IN LAW SCHOOL IS NOT WHAT MOST THINK IT IS
Let be be the first to state, being a perfectionist is not the only rule of thumb to live by. I know this sounds contradictory. In order to get into law school, you needed to be achieve perfection. You had to be better then all the rest. You had to leave all your competition in the dust.
This is the nature of being a law student, being better than the rest of your class.
LIFE IN LAW SCHOOL: AN INSIDE LOOK
Once you get into law school you will find out something different. I knew a student who wanted to achieve perfection in his Civil Pro class. He did, and then some. He got an A plus. He also suffered a meltdown afterwards. He started wondering if he could achieve the same thing each semester.
So he suffered a meltdown. It was really tragic. He did, however, learn a lesson. Perfection is not all it’s cracked up to be.
READING THAT ONE EXTRA BOOK
This is the common mistake that many perfectionists make with law school. It’s the whole fear of failure idea. Some students feel they need to read one more case. Some feel that if they look over one more brief, they will come up with the right answer.
This is probably one of the bigger misconceptions. Many students believe that “the right answer” is the key. Here is a clue, it’s not. Truth be told, there is not “right answer.”
Most students assume the law is something to be taught or learned. It’s not. Why would you pay $300 an hour or more, juts to hear a simple reply. If that’s all it took, we wouldn’t need lawyers. Everything would be solved in an half hour, like a Brady Bunch episode. Life does not work this way; and, neither does the law.
THE MESSY ANSWERS
This is what you have to take note of, the messy questions and answers. The key to law school is dealing with the ambiguity of it all. Think of law school as “training.” Law school is there to prepare you for life as a lawyer. That is all it is.
So many try to be perfect. Throw this idea out the door. Do not even entertain the notion of being perfect. Being perfect will only reward you with less then fair grades. Look for the “sort of right” answers.”
DON’T TRY SO HARD
Don’t try so hard. Lawyers tend to take life way too seriously. Some take it so seriously, they forget why they went to law school. These kinds of lawyers end up becoming so jaded after a while.
Do not allow this to happen. Just go in with an open mind and a relaxed conscious. Another thing you will want to do, think about the exam right away. All class is prep work for the final test. Start thinking about it as soon as you start. Think about it, but do not become obsessed with it. Find a healthy medium
Law school can either make or break you. The idea is to make it work for you. Do the work and apply yourself, but don’t look just one answer. Put down the books once in a while. See the ambiguity of the work you are doing. It’s only then you will find the “right answers.”
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