Secure Your Oxygen Mask First (Ep. 359)

Ben Olson's headshot.

If you want to help others, you need to take care of yourself first. On today’s episode, Ben and Nathan advise a listener to focus on helping herself before becoming a non-profit family law attorney. Doing so will ultimately put her in a better position to help others. The guys give another listener tips on how to ease test-day anxiety. They discuss the benefits of taking a gap year—or several—before law school. Plus, they talk about part-time lawyering and the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. Finally, they share a thoughtful note from LSAT Demon tutor and rising 3L Matt, who will be graduating from law school without a penny of debt.

As always, if you like the show and want to get more from the Thinking LSAT community, check out the links below. You can connect with other folks studying for the LSAT and get more useful resources from Nathan and Ben.

LSAT Demon

LSAT Demon iOS App

LSAT Demon Daily

Watch Episode 359 on YouTube

Thinking LSAT YouTube

LSAT Demon YouTube

7.26.2022 — September LSAT registration deadline

8.12.2022 — August LSAT begins

8.31.2022 — August LSAT scores released

9.9.2022 — September LSAT begins

9.28.2022 — September LSAT scores released

5:15 - Overcoming Test-Day Anxiety

An anonymous listener took the official LSAT in June and scored 10 points below their practice-test average. Anonymous attributes their performance to test-day anxiety and asks Ben and Nathan for advice on how to avoid giving the test so much power. The guys discuss LSAT score variance and offer Anonymous some tips to deal with test anxiety. Check out this recording for Nathan’s full lesson on overcoming test anxiety.

17:32 - Summer Associate Season

LSAT Demon teacher Rebecca shares a LinkedIn post from an attorney poking fun at big-law summer associates who submit overly long memos with big words such as “aforementioned.” Rebecca notes, “No one thinks you’re cool for using big words.” The guys laugh about the post and remind listeners that good writers edit their work.

20:23 - When Should I Apply? 

LSAT Demon student Jared is considering taking one or two gap years before applying to law school. He would like to improve his LSAT score, save money, and pursue some music opportunities he was offered. Jared asks the guys for their thoughts on whether delaying law school is a good idea. Nathan and Ben discuss the “special kind of crazy” it takes to be an attorney and advise Jared to think carefully about whether he fits into that bubble. They recommend that Jared take the offer to work in the music industry. He should take as much time as he needs to improve his LSAT score and to decide if becoming a lawyer is really what he wants to do.  

28:13 - GPA and Admissions Questions

Listener Yasenia is gearing up to study for the LSAT, but she worries that her 2.6 GPA might disqualify her from most law schools. She’s already “neck-deep in debt” from her undergraduate degree, and she can’t take off work while in law school. Ben and Nathan respond to Yasenia’s questions about GPAs, scholarships, and part-time law school. They encourage her to check out the LSAT Demon Scholarship Estimator to see which schools are likely to offer scholarships to an applicant with her current GPA and potential LSAT score. The guys also let Yasenia know that going back to school for an MBA won’t impact her LSAC-calculated GPA.

49:26 - Part-Time Lawyers

After listening to episode 333, listener Sorcha writes in to share some of her experiences working with part-time lawyers at a small plaintiff-side employment law firm. She notes that the attorneys worked about 20 hours per week, and each took home about $500K annually. Ben and Nathan comment on the idea of owning a law firm and discuss the ups and downs of entrepreneurship.

1:00:13 - Graduating from Law School Debt-Free

LSAT Demon teacher and rising 3L Matt thanks Nathan and Ben for the opportunities they have opened up for him over the years. He also shares that he just accepted his first post-JD position and that he’ll be graduating debt-free, in the top 10% of his class. Ben and Nathan congratulate Matt on his hard work and success. The guys also reminisce about times spent with Matt over the years and thank him for everything he has done for LSAT Demon.