During our Fundamentals Week, which is basically a crash-course in law school etiquette and expectations, one professor took the time to explain self-care in a way I’d never heard. She introduced me to Spoon Theory. Ever heard of it?
It is a great model to explain the use of energy and how to get more of it. The theory was written by Christine Miserandino. She used it to explain the energy available for someone with a chronic illness, but we can certainly relate it to the struggles of law school as well.
Basically, you start the day with a certain number of spoons. Now, if you haven’t rested well, or stayed up to the buttcrack of dawn working on that Legal Writing Objective Memo due at 7:45am, then you can imagine that you probably don’t have as many spoons as the student in class who finished and proofed their memo the night before. Throughout the day, you’ll need to use a certain amount of spoons to complete tasks. But, what happens when you inevitably run out of spoons?
Well, you have to get yourself more spoons. That’s right! You can earn them. You can take a nap, polish your nails, walk down all the aisles in Target and talk about absolutely nothing with your best friend. Do something that helps you relax or simply makes you feel good.
Now you may be wondering why I’m sharing Spoon Theory. I feel like it’s good to remind you that you’re working really damn hard. You’re busting your butt to make the grade you want/need/feel you deserve…and if you overwork those neurons – you’re going to burst! Pump the brakes and Treat yo’ self!
Sure you need to study, but you also must take a chill pill!
Midterms are over.
A few of my classmates showed up to exams in pajamas. They looked defeated before even walking into the exam. If I could have transferred some spoons, I would have. But, I don’t think I had any to spare.
That’s law school though, right? We’re supposed to be permanently exhausted, allergic to the sun, and scrambling to type up outlines.
NO. You’ll be a better student if you can get enough sleep to keep your days straight. Trust me. Your deadlines don’t seem to whiz by if you’ve taken the time to calendar them before taking an hour off to take your dogs to the park.
Now, don’t you dare lose your pool noodle and say that I told you to throw caution to the wind…because that’s not what I’m saying. I’m telling you to make time for you.
Law school is hard. Don’t make it harder by forgetting to take care of yourself.
Don’t stress about the exams you just took.
Focus on what you can improve on before getting to the Final.
You’ve got this.