Top 10 - freedigitalphotos by Stuart Miles

While I was studying for the California Bar Exam, I kept a running list of all the things I wanted to do after the exam was over, many of which were things I felt I was missing out on during my intense study period. This list was my salvation, my go-to guide for times when I was feeling down or just bored with my study routines. As something popped into my head I would add it to my list. It really helped me put everything into perspective knowing that soon this would be all over and worth it.

Here was my list, not in any particular order:

  1. Read all of the books I wasn’t able to read in the last 4 years. I used to love to read books just for fun. Novels, self-help books, biographies, I would order anything that sparked my curiosity to read on my Kindle. My “after bar exam” book list grew to be quite lengthy (I will share my reading list in a future post).
  2. Organize my closets. Being a professional organizer, I certainly was not practicing what I preached! My closets were a disaster after years of neglect. This was definitely one of my top priorities.
  3. Paint the rooms in my house. I certainly didn’t want paint fumes bothering me during my study time. Even though I wasn’t planning on doing the painting myself, I held my husband off from doing this until my studying was done.
  4. Take care of my overgrown garden. Things like re-potting my orchids, fertilizing my flowering plants or just changing things up a bit to give my garden some interest. I couldn’t wait to get out there and dig in the dirt!
  5. Cook meals again. I relied way too much on take-out during nights when my husband was working. If he wasn’t home to cook, nothing got made – pizza or Chinese food it was! The kids loved it but I knew it wasn’t healthy for any of us.
  6. Help my kids with their homework. I have one son who takes online courses for high school and if I didn’t stay on top of him, he would tend to slack off. Which is exactly what he did (as well as eat way too much pizza).
  7. Get a NetFlix membership. I purposely avoided watching any movies or TV shows while I was studying. The nightly news was more than enough to distract me. But it did help to know I could catch up later on shows I was missing.
  8. Take some courses from Solo Practice University. This was high on my “law career goal” list. Check them out if you are thinking of launching a solo law firm after you pass the bar.
  9. Take a vacation! My long-awaited trip to Canada after the bar exam was often on my mind. It was great to have this to look forward to.
  10. Just do nothing. I dreamed of how nice it will feel to have no pressure to do any studying at all. Wake up on a Saturday morning – no study schedule – just enjoy a leisurely breakfast, maybe a walk, or just sit around the house. Peace!

It definitely helped me to know that I had my list and could add to it whenever I felt like it.

What are YOUR top 10?  Start your own list and share with us your comments!

For more fun with this topic, check out some other lists on what law students want to do after the bar exam:
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