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Why I decided to wait to take the LSAT

mmurray9mmurray9 Alum Member
Hey fellow 7sagers,

This is my first post and it may be long (and more of a cathartic blog-like post), but I wanted to throw this out there for anyone who is also having similar feelings. I am signed up for the June LSAT (aka tomorrow) and am NOT taking it.

You may be thinking, "Oh this is just stress/anxiety." I'm sure that has some part to play, but I'd like to believe my reasoning is more logical than that.

I began the 7sage prep course back in January. When I say began, I mean more like I signed up. I thought, "I have a little less than 6 months. That should be enough time." I started off well, keeping on my schedule, but then LSAT prep took a back seat to all my other activities. As a full time student and part time worker who also attempted to have a social life, it didn't seem like there were enough hours in the day to also make time for LSAT prep. Then May hit. I had not yet finished the prep course nor had I taken any PTs. I thought, "I'm a smart person, I can just dedicate this month to the LSAT and I will be golden." I did spend tremendous amounts of time studying (like 8 hours a day, 6 days a week), but little did I know that wasn't good enough. It's true, you cannot cram for the LSAT. As it got closer and closer to the test date, I felt less and less sure about my ability. All of these posts that JY or any of the other 7sagers posted about the June LSAT would say things like, "You've done your prep tests, you know what you're likely to score. Don't worry so much." The thing is, I've only taken 2 PTs. My first one I got a 154 (158 with BR) and my second test I got a 158 (165 with BR). What a range! Who knows what I'll score on the actual test. My main issue is timing. The LG section kills me. Without blind review I was getting -11, but with BR I was getting -2. From this I learned a few things. My foundations were there, but I need to have practiced more to get the timing down. To put it simply, I am not ready. I've known this for some time and was hoping that by some miracle come today I would feel ready; that maybe in my last week of studying something would finally click. It hasn't. I know that if I were to take the LSAT tomorrow, I would not be performing at my best.

With this feeling, I looked to my parents for validation of my decision not to take the LSAT. My mom said, "What harm can it do? If you don't do well, just take it again. Law schools will see an improvement. You've spent so much time on this. You also can't get a refund. Why don't you just take it and see how it goes?" She makes a good argument and almost swayed me. But the thing of the matter is I don't want to take a test that I don't feel confident about, that I am not ready for. This is not anxiety getting the better of me. This is not a fear of that I won't do well (well maybe just a little) This is me taking an honest look in the mirror and knowing I can do better. I know where my strengths and weaknesses lie. I know what it takes to truly study for the LSAT. Maybe I'll never feel fully ready for the LSAT, but I do know that with more preparation I can go into the October's LSAT knowing I'm going to do the best I can do.

Comments

  • NYC12345NYC12345 Alum Inactive Sage
    1654 karma
    I think you should take the test tomorrow and cancel the score after. That way you can get a feel for how test day will feel like (you can measure how much anxiety you get on the actual LSAT).
  • 7sagelsatstudent1807sagelsatstudent180 Legacy Member
    926 karma
    Don't take the test until you are testing in a range you are comfortable with. I canceled my first LSAT before I ever heard of 7sage because I was underprepared and knew it. The only benefit taking the test was I knew I could comfortably complete each section in an actual test forum. Nontheless I blanked out during a reading comp section and I knew my score wouldn't be where I wanted... Just wait until October and don't put it off longer than that. For most people, there is no reason to study one full year. 6 months plus is plenty to reach your peak, if you study adequately.
  • visualcreedvisualcreed Legacy Member Inactive ⭐
    326 karma
    I was thinking of postponing as well since I haven't been able to study nearly as much as I wanted to. Part time for a few months is probably not an adequate time for full potential, however, when I look at where I am in life and what my goals are postponing doesn't make sense. I'm aiming for a 160 which should get me into my school of choice this upcoming fall and I feel that it is obtainable so I'm pushing forward. I would love to postpone and hit a 170 in October but that would postpone school for a year and I'm ready to get law done with and the extra points won't help me so its more a pride thing vs. logical so that's why I'm going to take it.

    That being said, I'm in a situation where I can start this fall vs starting in 2016 so it's a unique situation and I fully encourage taking the test when you feel you can achieve the score you want/need.
  • mes08mes08 Alum Member
    578 karma
    You def made the right choice to postpone. You shouldn't take the LSAT unless you're scoring in the range you're aiming for. I don't know for sure, but as far as I know, it looks a lot better in your law school app that you only took it once vs two or three times.
  • nicole.hopkinsnicole.hopkins Legacy Inactive Sage Inactive ⭐
    7965 karma
    @mmurray9 said:
    But the thing of the matter is I don't want to take a test that I don't feel confident about, that I am not ready for. This is not anxiety getting the better of me. This is not a fear of that I won't do well (well maybe just a little) This is me taking an honest look in the mirror and knowing I can do better.
    Someone get this OP a trophy or a plaque for writing this post/making this decision.

    Seriously. This post deserves a slow clap from Team 7sage.



    I want to commend you for your mindset: this process is not about getting X score. This is about reaching a place of confidence that you've done your best and have left no (reasonable) stone unturned.

    Will any of us ever be magically sure we're 100% ready? Will @"J.Y. Ping" ever ride down with a great clap of thunder on the back of a dragon dressed like a Targaryen to announce that you are finally ready, Valar Morghulis?

    Nah.

    Though I am considering photoshopping JY's face onto some ASoIaF fan art to achieve the effect.
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