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Discouraged ;/

in General 46 karma

I am hoping someone could give me some guidance ..
I have been studying the fundamentals of the LSAT sans tutor/books/etc for the past year while working full time and have had moments of "damn! why can't I just afford a tutor!?" and stopped and reassessed my studying & approach. It was at that time (about a month ago) that I came across 7Sage. The one and only PT i have taken is the 2007 one and scored a 144 (very upsetting)

I don't want to give up and think thats the best I can do since becoming an attorney has been a dream of mine since I was younger.

I am working through the curriculum and really taking the time to understand how to approach each section. Does anyone have any advice on anything else I should be doing to supplement the curriculum? I work 8-5 M-F, I study from about 6-9pm M-Thurs. & of course Saturday & Sunday.

I wanted to take the LSAT so I could apply for the fall 2017 school year, but I also don't want to give myself that deadline and add more anxiety to my progress, so I am open to waiting..

Any advice/guidance is appreciated!

Thanks guys :)


  • amipp_93amipp_93 Alum Member
    585 karma
    Several of us on this site have had low diagnostic scores. But that doesn't mean you can't improve. That's a fallacious correlation.

    Take the lsat when you're ready. Law school isn't sinking over night. If it takes you a year to get your goal score, so be it. If it takes 2 years, so be it. The only thing it comes down to is you will to put in the effort. The test is learnable and you can do it too.
  • jennilynn89jennilynn89 Alum Member
    822 karma
    Hey @elizabethkaren05 !

    You're totally not alone. We've all been there (some still are).
    How have you been studying for the LSAT over the past year? What study material did you have/use? I'm in a similar situation as you. I've been studying for nearly a year now, and had my fundamentals all wrong. I started out with the bibles and did not hone in on those fundamental skills enough, wasted a bunch of PTs, and wasn't nearly as prepared as I should've been. Took the LSAT last December, and totally bombed it.

    Honestly, one PT is nothing. It's merely a diagnostic, if nothing else. That 2007 PT you took will show you how much you can learn and grow from here. I've started the 7Sage curriculum about 3 months ago, and I can honestly attest to its incredible effectiveness.
    The best thing you can do is really take the time and go through the entire curriculum before you touch another PT. REALLY hone in on all of JY's lessons. Repeat those that you had trouble with until you understand them (like REALLY understand them). Don't set yourself a LSAT deadline. Law school isn't going anywhere. Set yourself an LSAT goal, study until you've reached that goal, take the LSAT and ace it!

    I also work full-time 8-5 M-F, and I've dealt with burnout before, so keep in mind that burnout is a real problem, so you don't want to overdo it and stress yourself out.
    I study right after work M-W take break Thursday and Friday and resume over the weekend. Sometimes I take a break on Saturdays, too. I can usually get in 9-10 hours of studying during the week and an additional 8-10 over the weekend.
    You have to truly believe in yourself! You can do this!!

    Feel free to reach out to me anytime you need a little positive reinforcement. I know I needed it after my LSAT fiasco and burnout dilemma.
  • alexroark5alexroark5 Alum Member Inactive ⭐
    812 karma
    I think the best thing you are doing for yourself is being comfortable with a long term timeline. Slow and steady is the ideal way to go for many people
  • 46 karma
    @amipp170 and @alexroark5 thank you both! I needed that reassurance to shatter my preconceived timeline for taking the LSAT.

    @jennilynn89 Glad to know I am not alone.. The past year, I didn't really have a training plan/material. I was foolish and thought the LSAT was just "another standardized test"..and boy was I very wrong and got the wake up call I deserved.

    Last December I bought the LSAT trainer and worked my way through it and I started to understand the break down of the LSAT and found myself being able to read an LR question and know what the question asked of me, I could come across a LG game and know how to set up a game board, and for RC I finally saw how the passage could be broken up (so I thought). In my mind, I was ready. So, I took my first PT about a month before the June LSAT and this is when I saw my 144 and immediately withdrew. I stopped, reassessed, and decided to purchase 7Sage. I have been working thoroughly through each lesson, like you said, even if that means spending 30 min on an explanation of a question or reading through the comments to find a way that makes sense to me.

    In the past year, I have noticed a burn out trying to devote equal time to work & studying. I am going to take your advice and take a brain breather when needed. I hope I can see an improvement like you have in the near future.

    I guess I am worried that come my next PT after fully finishing the curriculum I don't see an improvement (Need to shake this off !!)

    I really appreciate the support..Its great knowing there are people here pursuing the same goal, thank you!!
  • SprinklesSprinkles Alum Member
    edited July 2016 11536 karma
    You have no reason to feel discouraged as you are on the right path :) I'm glad to see the only PT you've done is the 2007 one because many people fail to realize the value these pearls PTs have; especially because there's not much of them! It seems you're focusing on all the wrong things which leads up to your anxiety and discouragement. I was on the same boat as you when my Feb LSAT score came in, but also like yourself, being an attorney is a dream of mine so I'm not and you're not going to let a bad attempt allow you to give up on your dreams! Also you're in the best care there is in terms of LSAT success....7sage curriculum does wonders to your performance and this forum is seriously so encouraging and uplifting....I love it here and I'm sure you will too. Give it your all and don't sweat it, and most of all DO NOT rush into taking an LSAT. If Sept is your goal LSAT so be it, but if your PTs are showing you still need more practice after Sept. then Take as much time as you need for this exam.....I've said this so many times because I want you all to learn from my mistake: A stronger LSAT score outweighs an earlier application ALWAYS. Good day :D
  • lenelson2lenelson2 Member
    523 karma
    You got this! A lot of of us are on a longer timeline. Personally, I have pushed back my exam after taking the dec 2015 lsat like many times...
    I also work full time as well, so I feel your struggles. I would search the discussions forums using the search bar to view other opinions on working full time and the LSAT. I remember Jonathon Wang either created a post or commented on one that I found very useful. I'll try and find it for you. If it's your dream to be a lawyer-don't give up!!!! :)
  • AddistotleAddistotle Member
    328 karma
    Do not give up! Keep grinding, you can raise that 144 dramatically if you keep at it... You will succeed so long as you persist!

    Pushing back to 2018 isn't the worst thing in the world, especially if you want to apply with the strongest possible LSAT score, another year of participating in this community will give you a massive return on your investment, if you're willing to make it.

    To give you an idea, my diagnostic was a 150 in November '15 that turned it into a 169 for the June '16 sitting.

    I studied while working 7-3:30pm.

    Or 6-430 if you account for the fact I cycled to and from work... But more like 4:15am-5:30pm if you account for making food, stretching, and packing up to leave every day.

    I only had a couple hours every night, even then I was sacrificing a lot of sleep at times when I had to.

    With time, it will come, feelings of discouragement are part of it. This test breaks you, but 7sage will continue building you back up until you're prepared to succeed!
  • 17 karma
    This might sound ridiculous depending on what kind of day/night cycle you have, but for the past three months I've been waking up before work to study. I would never have thought to do that on my own, but in one of the first videos on 7Sage J.Y. said something along the lines of "Do you really think you're going to study well after a full day of work?" And I hated to admit it because I've always been a night owl, but he's absolutely right. When I study in the morning, I'm refreshed and ready to take on new ideas, whereas after work all I really want to do is eat dinner and watch TV. It's hard to get into the swing of things, and I admit waking up is so hard sometimes, but if you're as dedicated as you sound I think you'll be able to work through it. I'd encourage you to try it out for a week and see if you feel like you're absorbing more. I definitely concentrate better. PLUS you have the added bonus of being mentally prepared for timing of the actual test, which to my understanding is pretty darn early in the morning.
  • esteeroseesteerose Alum Member
    382 karma
    I agree with @larafuturelawyer. I have a toddler, and studying is useless when she is awake. When I can wake up super early I do the best.

    My financial aid will expire if I don't take advantage of this year's admissions cycle. I am definitely freaking out right now, and am right there with you. I am only 46% through the course, so I have been spending every moment available to me on 7sage. I hope I can finish by September! Btw, my diagnostic was 141, but I am seeing a HUGE improvement after the lessons.
  • edited July 2016 46 karma
    @esteerose @larafuturelawyer @Addistotle @lenelson2 I want to thank each of you for taking the time for reading & commenting on my post. I appreciate it SO much! I took the weekend off to shake off the discouragement and after reading this thread, I feel much more comfortable juggling the load I have while continuing to pursue my goal of being an attorney. We will all do great if we continue to work hard and not lose sight of our goal! :)

    Thank you again!!
  • OnionKeeperOnionKeeper Alum Member
    65 karma
  • 46 karma
    @OnionKeeper LOL. you just made my night.
  • theLSATdreamertheLSATdreamer Alum Member
    1287 karma
    its a hard test, I had a shitty diagnostic too, but like you my dream has been to be an attorney since I was young so screw that score lets kill this test!!! lets work so hard that in a few months we will be the success stories here !
  • courtneyrcourtneyr Alum Member
    26 karma
    Thank you @elizabethkaren05 for being honest and posting about yourself. I can relate to your post. The comments are encouraging and have helped me keep pushing through. Every time I feel discouraged, I will refer back to this thread. Many thanks to everyone.
  • kmarie7kmarie7 Alum Member
    208 karma
    I was very discouraged when I took my first PT too. I have been using 7sage for 2 months, and have seen a 9 point increase! Y
  • danielznelsondanielznelson Alum Inactive Sage Inactive ⭐
    4181 karma
    I had a disappointing score two years ago and have firmly increased my PT scores over 20 points. It has taken me time - about a year until I got to about where I am today in terms of my scores - but it's well worth it and very doable. I'm not a genius, and I'm not a particularly good test taker. Heck, I scored just above average on the GRE (which I was forced to take for a college course) after a moderate amount of studying, and I'm not sure I would've been able to do all that much better had I really studied hard for it. The LSAT is an entirely different story by nature of the test's content itself. What you learn during your LSAT studies is akin to learning a new language, it's rules, exceptions, et cetera.

    I have always wanted to be an attorney as well and I too was willing (and actually ended up) pushing back my entrance into law school for the sake of a better score. I can't say that you will need to push your test date back, but I think you're in a great position with the mindset you have. If you aren't where you are goal-wise come test day, I would strongly recommend pushing back to a later date, even if that means waiting another year. The chance to earn even a modest score increase is well worth the risk of entering law school just a year later.
  • Chipster StudyChipster Study Yearly Member
    893 karma
    Remember, learning is a matter of number of repetitions and the time interval between those. If you take it slow and steady you will turn it into saying the A B C s. It is just something that you are naturally comfortable with. If you get burned out, take a little time off, go to a music festival weekend, go whale watching, get out of the LSAT space. Then you can come back strong.
  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma
    @elizabethkaren05, don't be discouraged! I know the feeling of working and having other pressures besides the LSAT, but you can do this. Watch Nicole Hopkin's story webinar of here 20 point increase! It was really inspiring and taught me that this is doable, even while working. And 7Sage has helped me immensely. You can absolutely do this, there is no question about it. The only thing you need to accept is that it may take a long time, and that's okay! The LSAT is wonderful because it is truly one of the only tests of its magnitude in which we have unlimited time to study... Don't let the pressure of timing be a factor. It might take a year, and again, that's perfectly okay. I started from a 151 and was appalled, but little by little I am seeing tons of little improvements all over, most importantly with my confidence in attacking the questions. I haven't taken any PTs since my diagnostic, but just feeling more confident is working wonders in being able to get up early every day before work and prepping, as well as after work. And be sure to utilize your Saturdays!

    Just remember, your diagnostic is just that; a test to gauge your improvement. You only started a month ago and that's not long at all. You'll start seeing improvements reflected in your score once you finish the core curriculum and Blind review your tests...

    You got this!
  • CallMeIshmaelCallMeIshmael Member
    edited July 2016 18 karma
    One of the best tips I have read is having a solid study schedule and sticking to it. I work Monday through Friday, 8-5, also. I am taking the LSAT in December. The first Prep Test I took I scored a 150 (promising). The second Prep Test I took I scored a 142 (disappointing). Why did my score drop? I realized I spent more time thinking of the schools I wanted to attend, the score I wanted to get, and the difficulty of the test than studying for the test and trying to conquer it. Realize the test is not invincible. You can conquer it with hard work and dedication. At the end of the day, ask yourself what you are willing to sacrifice to achieve your goal.

    Next week I start my 4-month study routine. I'll list it below for you. Use it as guidance to build your schedule, or steal it if you want to.

    1. Take a Prep Test on Monday (after work) and Saturday.
    2. Blind Review Monday Prep Test Tuesday through Friday.
    3. Blind Review Saturday Prep Test on Sunday.
    4. After taking four Prep Tests separate the four test into sections.
    5. Drill LR for 35 minutes on Tuesday before work; Blind Review during lunch break.
    6. Drill LG for 35 Minutes on Wednesday before work; Blind Review during lunch break.
    7. Drill RC for 35 Minutes on Thursday before work; Blind Review during lunch break.
    8. Drill your weakest section for 35 minutes on Friday before work; Blind Review during lunch break.
    9. Take a break when you need it.
    10. Keep a notebook titled Positive Mental Attitude; write something to motivate you everyday.

    "If you will it, Dude, it is no dream."
  • lenelson2lenelson2 Member
    523 karma
    @elizabethkaren05 , yes! I love your attitude. You will find a large and strong response from this community in regards to your post because we have ALL been's really difficult to fully comprehend how hard this exam will be. But, it's really important to use that frustration as motivation. Everyone has given amazing advice here, and I want to share I'm also learning that you can't choose when you will take the exam, especially if you are aiming for a certain score.
    Since I work full time as well, some strategies that have helped me include creating a feasible weekly schedule which right now looks like sorta like:
    6-615 am meditate
    620-700 exercise
    705-740 one section (right now it's LG... gotta get that LG house in order)
    740-805 get ready for work and take my cute self to the office
    6-9 or 10p.m. reviewing the section from the morning and working with my tutor (love you boo!)
    Sat pt, br
    Sun LG all day..until the end of August when it will become my rest day.

    Thanks for posting and more importantly for getting back on that horse. You might fall off again, but please know it's all part of the process on the road to mastery. Good luck chica!
  • AlejandroAlejandro Member Inactive ⭐
    2424 karma
    I got a diagnostic of 143 if that helps. Now I'm pretty good ;)
  • KaterynaKateryna Alum Member
    984 karma
    my diagnostic was 143 as well. 55% through the curriculum and now i am at 152 as my recent times pt showed. i am not losing hope to improve another 8 points or so
  • MrSamIamMrSamIam Inactive ⭐
    2086 karma
    The fact that you're not setting a deadline for when to take the LSAT tells me that you have the right mindset. Your only task now is to figure out which school you want to go to, their average score, and consequently your target score...then, to achieve that score.
    Take as long as you need. Many of us here started with a not-so-great diagnostic score. All that number tells you is that you need to study.
    If becoming an attorney is your dream, make it a reality. Yes, the LSAT can be discouraging at times. However, the question is are you really going to let one test deter you from doing what you've always wanted to do with your life?
    Crack open those books (or computer screen) and get to work!
  • Matt1234567Matt1234567 Inactive ⭐
    1294 karma
    Just keep grinding it out, studying, and reviewing (absolutely necessary if you want to get over your predicament). My diagnostic score was a 133, now I'm scoring in the 160s and still improving. Don't let a diagnostic score determine how you will score on this exam. The diagnostic score only shows you where you currently are, not what score you will achieve.
  • 46 karma

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