#barpreplife: Remembering My Why?

GUEST BLOG by Ifeoma Ukwubiwe
Graduated from Rutgers School of Law-Newark

During my last year of law school, I came across a series of audios called “The Edge: the Power to Change your Life Now” (otherwise known as “The Edge”) by Anthony Robbins that changed my perspective on my life. Whenever I feel discouraged, I put on my headphones and play “The Edge.” The Edge ignites a fire within me. I highly recommend these series of audios for those feeling down during Bar Prep. In Fact, you can check it out on Spotify. The audio gives tools and inspiration for success. The most valuable tool it gives is how to use your emotions to achieve your goals. When I listen to Anthony Robbins, I constantly ask myself, what is it that motivates me to study harder when I feel like giving up?

I want to make a positive impact in my community.

As problems facing society get ever more vexing, the need for public interest lawyers is even greater. I’ve worked many years in my local community and I know that given my experience, I can make a valuable change in the legal community. I’ve graduated law school and now I need to pass the bar exam.

I’ve earned the right to be here.

Not by chance. By hard work. There are countless people who are waiting for me to change their lives. This continues to motivate me to fulfill my dreams of being an attorney. I’ve never been the best student in my classes, but I’ll work harder and smarter than anyone else. This means sacrificing things that I want to do in order to focus on the things I need to do.

Thus far, during bar -prep, I keep my “why” in my heart and in my mind. I visualize seeing my name on that list and I imagine the feeling I will get when I received the victorious news. This feeling continues to push me. I feel like I have a river flowing inside of me, one that I get to take from whenever I feel the need.

There are times I want to give up, sleep or drink. There are times when my body is fatigued. When this happens, I just stop, take a deep breath and ask myself what is my “why”? I am a firm believer that one can achieve so much more when they have a “why.”

I challenge you all to remember your “WHY.”

We’ve all been blessed with gifts, talents, and abilities, which the world has a great need for. Remember your Why and stay encouraged. It’s almost over.

Until Next Time,
Ifeoma

#barpreplife: Celebrating Small Victories

GUEST BLOG by Ifeoma Ukwubiwe
Graduated from Rutgers School of Law-Newark

We have all heard about the benefits of celebrating small victories and its proven effect on levels of success. Being able to see small and incremental changes in ones overall performance in bar prep can substantially affect your confidence.

Instead of beating myself up about what isn’t going right, I’m celebrating my victories. I’m celebrating my small victories whether they be spotting issues, improving my MBE scores on a particular topic, or even successfully sitting through a whole lecture without looking at my phone.

I think we can all agree that the bar exam puts pressure on a bar-prepper. The thought of finishing law school and not passing an exam necessary to practice is heart breaking. Not having legal employment after law school is one thing but not passing the bar is a completely different animal.

Taking the bar exam isn’t easy and stressing about whether you can memorize all the black letter law is overwhelming. This week I decided to celebrate my small victories:

  1. Multiple Choice Gains: I was performing horribly on Civil Procedure and New York Practice. Consequently, I stepped away from my personal study plan. I decided to review the conviser outline in detail in those subjects because I found I was missing important concepts. Next, I took a series of practice questions and reviewed the explanatory answers. When I reviewed the explanations, I wrote down all the rules that I got wrong. I reviewed them again so if I saw that rule tested again, I would not miss that particular question. As I tested more questions, I saw a massive gain in more score. Celebration!
  2. Victorious Essays: Let’s just say my first graded essay was “Rough.” I scored below average. I was discouraged and tried to figure out how I would increase my score. One thing I did know was that I didn’t know the law well enough. I decided to take a step back and review the bigger picture of the subject and then fill in small details of the law. Consequently, I was able to improve my next essay by 7 points. Victory is Mine!
  3. Getting Rid of Distractions: Sitting through a long lecture without checking emails, text messages and social media accounts can be hard to do especially if it’s a subject that is “cough cough….BORING.” This week I “attempted” to turn off my phone. Lets just say I have some work to do. However, I was able to do it for one day. Small Victory! One day is better than none!

I challenge you all to celebrate your small victories and find confidence in your strengths!

Until Next Time,
Ifeoma

#barpreplife: 5 Bar-Preppers to Avoid on Social Media

GUEST BLOG by Ifeoma Ukwubiwe
Graduating 3L from Rutgers School of Law-Newark

I’m a big proponent of Social Media

If you’re anything like me and choose to keep your social media account active during Bar Prep, avoid the following Bar-Preppers during Bar Prep:

  1. “The Pessimist Bar- Prepper” Misery loves company. So if you come across a Pessimist Bar-Prepper, “Unfollow” or “Unfriend.” The Pessimist Bar-Preppers are easy to come across. They are scared they will not pass the bar exam, and want you to be scared with them. They post things such as: “I’m going to fail the Bar Exam,” “I can’t do this,” and “I’m freaking out.” You do not need to subject yourself to their social media rants. You should just avoid them like the plague. Of course, we all have doubts about our abilities, but keep positive. You can do this as so many before us have.
  2. “The Play-by-Play Bar- Prepper” You know the excessive poster — you can’t miss them. They. post. all. the. time. And tell you every frickin’ thing they do or are not doing. Let me tell you this, there’s nothing worse than an excessive Bar-Preppers. They will tell you that they woke up and did 50 MBE Torts questions followed by a run in the park followed by 50 more torts questions followed by a contracts essay followed by… I’m sure you get the point. No moment of their Bar Prep life is too mundane for them to broadcast. “Unfollow” or “Unfriend.” Do you really have time to keep up with their daily schedules?
  3. The Self-Promoter Bar-Prepper” OK, so we’ve probably all posted at least once about some Bar Prep achievement. And sure, maybe your friends really do want to know that you got 21/25 correct on a Contracts Questions set. But when almost EVERY post is about how well you are doing in Bar Prep, you sound like a bragger. “Unfollow” or “Unfriend.” These Bar Preppers will have you doubting your own abilities and you will soon compare their success to your shortcomings. “Don’t compare your progress with that of others. We all need our own time to travel our own distance.” So if your only getting 15/25 correct, then work smarter to get your score up but do not compete with other students.
  4. “The Complaining Bar-Prepper” The Complainer is pretty self-explanatory: they are a pessimist through and through, complaining about every little thing about Bar Prep. Many of these people are passive aggressive sorts. Don’t let this person’s complaining get to you. Whether it be on social media or in person. “Unfollow” or “Unfriend.”
  5. “The Cool Bar-Prepper” I’m sure your wondering who “The Cool Bar-Prepper” is! Well, they are the folks who post pictures of themselves doing some fun activity with a hashtag or a caption describing the activity as their #BarPrep. You’ve seen them before, during final exam season posting about all the wine they’re drinking when they have 3 finals and a paper coming up. “Unfollow” or “Unfriend”

Hopefully this little rundown has opened your eyes to the various types of Bar Prep Social Media posters. Maybe this even brought you to an immense realization that YOU ARE one of these types of posters. If you had an epiphany, consider journaling them away!

Until Next Time,
Ifeoma