You Might Feel Like You're Failing, But You're Learning More Than Ever

You Might Feel Like You're Failing, But You're Learning More Than Ever

The feeling of falling into a constant spiral of failure still haunts me.

I thought I had mastered my studying routine and time management skills in high school but I was wrong. I could not balance my social life, sleep schedule, and academics when I came to college. There were no assignments given daily to boost up my GPA.

There were no professors who would hold my hand to write an essay. I no longer had my parents to wake me up for class. I was all alone and in an attempt to adjust to this new life, I saw myself falling quickly behind.

When I woke up one morning flooded with a gut-wrenching realization that I was a "failure", I knew it was too late. I felt lost and unable to make up all of the work I had missed. I felt self-hatred for letting it go for so long. I knew my actions were all I could blame for the falling short in my academics.

With great emotional distress eating me up, I started to pull away from my best friends and family to deal with this problem that I caused for myself. Unable to stand back up, I kept falling.

Finals week was quickly approaching and I had a sudden determination to stop this never-ending, self-destructive cycle. After hours and hours of studying, I made it through finals week. Just because I that bump in the road, my life wasn't over. I was drowning in my failure instead of pushing myself to try harder to fix the issue. Fixated on my problems, I did not search for the solution.

As my friend would say, "a storm doesn't last forever." Everything will pass and everyone makes mistakes. We are human and if we don't have moments in our life when we question our actions and mistakes, we cannot grow as individuals.

I learned a lot about myself after my first year at Syracuse University.

When hit with a problem, I shut down. So I saw a need to improve my way of coping with situations and looking at the bigger picture. Now, I turn to family and friends for support to help guide me in any situation.

If you feel like all the work in college is swallowing you whole -- you are not alone.

Take a deep breath and a step back from the situation. Clear you head and realize that you have friends, family and other school resources to help you.

Don't be afraid to admit your mistakes because it's all in the process of growing into a better you.

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything

I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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Studying the LSAT and Working Full Time

How to make room for advancing your future while maintaining the present.


Working full time and studying for the LSAT proves a delicate tightrope that many people grapple to tread. If you find yourself in such a situation, then some good news is on the horizon as many have juggled the requirements of both aspects seamlessly in the past. Today we take a look at what these individuals did and how you too can effectively balance the scales without leaning too much to one side or the other.

Starting early

Having a full-time job leaves little morsels of time to work with and often the best approach entails beginning early so that the collective total makes up constructive study hours in the long run. As a general rule of thumb for the working class, start a minimum of 4 but preferably 6 months to the date of the test. Science dictates that there are half a dozen intellectual and quality hours per day and with a demanding job breathing down your neck, you can only set aside about a third of that for productive LSAT test prep. With 3 months being the measure of ideal study time for a full-time student, you'll need double that period to be sufficiently up to par.

Maximizing your mornings

Studying in the evenings after a grueling and intellectually draining day at work is as good as reading blank textbooks. It's highly unlikely you'll be able to grasp complex concepts at this time, so start your mornings early so that you can devote this extra time when you are at your mental pinnacle to unraveling especially challenging topics. Evening study times should only be for refresher LSAT prep or going through light subject matters requiring little intellectual initiative. For those who hit their stride at night, take some time to unwind and complete your chores before getting down to business well before bedtime.

Taking some time off

All work and no play does indeed make Jack a dull boy and going back and forth between work and study is a sure-fire recipe for disaster. So take some time off of work every now and then, preferably during weekdays- you can ask for a day off every fortnight or so- as weekends are a prime study period free of work obligations. Such breaks reduce fatigue, better study performance and increase the capacity for information retention.

Prioritizing study

Given the scarce oasis of free time in your busy schedule, you cannot afford to miss even a single session and this commitment is important in spreading out the burden so that it is not overwhelming as you approach the finish line. Be sure to have a clear schedule in place and even set reminders/alarms to help enforce your timetable. If it's unavoidable to miss a single session, set aside a makeup as soon as possible.

Last but not least, have a strong finish. Once you are approaching the home run i.e. about 2 or 3 weeks to the test, take this time off to shift your focus solely to the test. The last month can make or break your LSAT test prep and it'll be hard to concentrate on working whilst focusing completely on the test.

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