With exams upon you, we wanted to tap into the expertise here at Leo Cussen and share fresh inspiration for wellness tips. With several lawyers who are also leaders in wellness, we put together best of the best wellness tips for exam survival.
First, we feature Tara Stark who reminds us there is always room for fresh inspiration into your wellness tool kit and what better time to share some of their student wellness tips than now! Read Tara’s tips below.
In our second piece for best of the best wellness tips for exam survival, Desi Vlahos advises why a schedule is so important and how to make it work.
We hope you enjoy this and more importantly that you can take one or two things with you to keep you strong and well during this final phase of assessment.
Tara Stark is one of our supportive mentors and lawyers as Leo Cussen. Tara has extensive experience in the mental health sector. Before beginning her career in law, she worked in local government and public mental health sectors roles and is also a director on the Board of the Satellite Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation that supports children and young people who have a parent with a mental illness.
What ways do you suggest students can look after themselves?
Tara: Commit to it! It takes conscious effort to look after yourself when the demands on your time and attention are many. Consider your mental health a professional responsibility and you will treat it as such. The ‘how to’ will take various forms as we are all individuals, but if you’re into reading and research (which many lawyers are), think of it as another area to upskill yourself in. Find ways to look after yourself by reading widely and trying any number of techniques until you find a mix that works for you at this stage in your life.
It’s also worth being willing to adapt. Before I had a family, I was a yoga devotee and would be at the hot yoga studio at 6am every morning. I now have twin pre-schoolers and I’m pregnant with another set of twins (yes, you read that right!) and the idea of daily 6am yoga practice seems ludicrous. Looking after myself now looks very different. It’s more of a mental game than it used to be, and I take brief snatches in time to ingrain healthy work habits, go for walks and remain socially connected.
How can students look after themselves during exam time?
Tara: Set boundaries around your time. No one can work effectively 24/7. The students I see struggling most tend to be those who are committing the longest hours to the task. Having an unending period of time for a task simply isn’t a sustainable or sensible way to work. It isn’t motivating! Even during the highest-pressure exam periods at high school and uni, I never studied after 7pm and I avoided studying on Sundays except during Swotvac. It forced me to use to my time efficiently and effectively and gave me sufficient time to recharge.
Read up on how sleep helps your brain to function and process memory – it’s a powerful motivator for shutting that laptop screen! It is also good preparation for practice. You’re usually working to tight deadlines and rarely have the luxury of mulling too long over one task.
Start focusing on your productivity and ability to switch between tasks with agility. It will serve you well now and in the future.
Any other self-care tips?
Tara: Find something bigger than yourself to commit to. This sounds utterly grandiose, but humans have always sought meaning. For some it is religion, for me it is utterly secular. I was in a major life-threatening incident early in my twenties and I just had to find something meaningful to cling to in order to get through that recovery. I find purpose in my family, my work and stepping lightly on the earth while remembering I’m just a small part of a much bigger story of this earth.
If you are finishing up law school and want to reserve a time to discuss your future PLT feel free to book a chat to ask anything you are unsure about the course. Alternatively, you will find our PLT guide has plenty of information.
Enrolments are open and filling fast. Completing our enrolment form submits your application for PLT and reserves you a place in the course. This form does not commit you to the course and you are still able to cancel your enrolment should you wish to do so.