A Month in Law School

After a month in law school, I would like to write about my adjustments and what I have realized so far.

I know getting into law school would mean losing a few (or more) hours of my precious sleep. In a normal situation, I always make it to a point that I get at least eight hours of sleep. I also rarely sleep late because I am already sleepy around nine o’clock p.m. #TeamSleep

I am a working student, which means I make up my time for studying late at night and very early in the morning. My typical day starts at four a.m. and ends at 12 midnight so I can hopefully finish reading (and comprehending) heaps of assigned cases and memorize provisions. That means I just have roughly four hours of sleep almost everyday!

It’s not easy, of course. What I do is I take a bath immediately after my alarm clock rings. It’s cold, but it’s the only way for me to be awake enough to read without dozing off. I use the pomodoro technique–  I study straight for 45 minutes and then take a break for 15 minutes. I use my breaks to take a nap!

My weekends are very different from when I was not into law school yet. Before, I would read books for leisure, practice brush calligraphy, watch series, or just bum around with my boyfriend. Now, I wake up early even on weekends to study. I have classes on Saturday afternoons, while on Sundays, I just study the whole day (with breaks, of course!) until it is time to sleep.

Dates with my boyfriend are also different now. Since we are both law students, we have study dates. It is not as boring as it sounds. Haha. To be honest, it is the highlight of my week. I look forward to it every weekend.🙂

It also pains me that I cannot go home every other weekend anymore. I miss our house, my room, home-cooked meals, and most of all, my family! Fortunately, they visit me once every month. I’m grateful that they are very supportive.❤

I have less time, or none at all, to chat or hang-out with my friends, too. I know it’s bad for my social life, but with my situation and knowing my capacity to socialize, law, work, and time for my family and boyfriend are already taking up most of my energy and time. People may frown at this, but for now, I am contended that my social life mostly involves my family and boyfriend. I will re-connect with friends during my sem-break, that is for sure.

My law school being a sectarian one, I needed to adjust with their prayer time and seminar subject. We are required to take a seminar or religion class until second year. We have to stop walking and talking when it is time for the three p.m. and six p.m. prayers. It is my first time to study in a Catholic school, so this practice is very new to me. Since high school, we never pray before and after classes. U.P. never does that, too. In my school, it is a rule, and we have the motto ora et labora, which means prayer and work. Personally, I do not hate it, but I find it ironic that I am in a Catholic school while I am not a religious and faithful person. Hehe.🙂

Now, my realizations.

Studying law is a way of life. It is not for the faint of heart, lazy, and uncommitted. To be in law school is to want it everyday. Comparing it to a romantic relationship with a person, it is the partner who the other party chooses to love everyday despite the imperfections and challenges in the relationship.

Like what my father told me, the three rules in law school are: READ, READ, AND READ. Time is of the essence, so I get every chance I can to read wherever, whenever. Hehe.

Taking care of myself is also one of my priorities. Weak immune system will have a domino effect in my performance in law school and in work. I take multivitamins and supplements everyday, twice a day. This is very important since I do not get enough sleep and I always process a lot of information.

A law student can only prepare as much. With the many cases and provisions that she has to study for one class, it is normal to get confused with the facts and terms used. The most that a law student can do is to do her part to study as much as she can. Lucky if I was not called to recite a case I haven’t read or to answer a question which I do not know the answer. In case of bad recitations, whether I knew the answer or not, I do not let the bad feeling stay longer than necessary. I charge it to experience, to lessons.

Terror but brilliant professors are worth it. There has never been a time yet when I did not feel nervous for a class. I especially get loud heartbeats when I am called to recite. Beyond these, I am thankful to learn from my professors, four of them bar topnotchers, and one a valedictorian of their batch in law school.

It helps that my mindset is that I am studying not for the recits or exams, but for THE Bar Exams years from now so that I can pass, practice law, and help people who need legal service.

Often times, I would rather not work. I want to focus on my law studies only. However, I need to work. I pay for my own bills, rent, and tuition. I do not want to burden my parents of these things anymore. On the flip side, working has made me value my time more.

So there! Gotta work now.😦🙂 Haha.

Three months left

There are times that I just want to stay in the house and not go to where I work, ever. Some days are more challenging to deal with. I’m sure I’m not the only one in the office who feels this way, but they still kick their asses off to go to work no matter what. It makes me guilty. If they still try, why wouldn’t I? Things here are not always inspiring, but the people here try to work as much as they can.

I always count the days until we’re done here. There are still three months left. I am thankful for this opportunity, but I’ve been feeling like I’ve already had enough. I wish I were doing something else or I were somewhere else.

Happy Me

Hi, hello, Happy New Year!

This is not a post about my New Year’s resolutions. To be honest, I am not a fan of New Year’s resolutions. Whenever I’m asked why, I always say that if you want to change, change now; don’t wait for a new year. This is just a post of what I’ve been doing lately, and I’m happy to share this because I feel that I am improving.🙂

Just before 2015 ended, I’ve read a book entitled The One Thing by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan (New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today No. 1 best seller, among others). It was the best book to close my 2015. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT; it’s a book about paying attention to what matters most among your tasks and doing it first before anything else. While its premise is basic, a lot of people don’t pay attention to it because they love multitasking. Read it for yourself, it could be life-changing for you, too. I’ve been practicing the tips in the book and they have helped me be more focused and productive (less task-switching, fewer daily to-do’s, and fulfillment at the end of the day).

I’ve started waking up at 5AM to do the most important thing for my short-term goal that is connected to my long-term goal. It is challenging to wake up this early, but when I hear my alarm clock, I repeatedly remind myself the reason why I need to do it until I get up from the bed.

Sometimes we need to change our behaviors when we’re creating a new habit. To be able to wake up at 5AM, I need to sleep earlier, which means I need to sleep by 9:20PM. Why 9:20PM? According to articles about sleep cycles, the ideal time to wake up is in between of sleep cycles. Otherwise, waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle makes us feel tired and groggy. I downloaded a sleeping app called SleepyTime that helps me to find out the ideal time to sleep when I know when to wake up or the ideal time to wake up when I know when to sleep. Since I’m also aiming for seven to eight hours of sleep, sleeping at 9:20PM lets me have almost eight hours of sleep. Okay, too much explanation for that. Haha.

I’ve also changed my mindset when it comes to working out. Before, it was just to be slimmer, but that kind of reason did not make me committed. So, I thought of important reasons why I should workout: better blood circulation, helps the brain function better, elicits the feeling of happiness (because of the “happy hormones” that are released post-workout), and lessens my mood swings. The physical appearance then just becomes a bonus.😉 I workout 5 times a week now by walking, doing yoga, and resistance training.

These are just a couple of my new habits that I’ve been practicing since January. I feel better and happier.

Much-needed break

I’m so happy that we have a one-week vacation from work next week because of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). Although I am not totally fine with how the government is trying to “clean up” Manila for APEC, I am grateful that I will have my much-needed break.

Finally, I have a week to reflect, plan, and do the things I would like to do without work interfering. I’m excited for my first international trip, too, which will be on Singapore.🙂 I became anxious when our flight carrier announced that they cancelled over a hundred flights during the APEC; fortunately, our flight is not one of them. I honestly don’t have an itinerary yet. My officemate will be with me on the first day, but she has to go home the next day because of a wedding that she has to attend to. So it’s like my first international trip will also be my first solo travel. Whuddupppp, I’m thrilled and nervous at the same time!

Meeting People

You know the saying, “Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are” or “Birds with the same feather flock together”?

I believe in this saying a lot. I’m not the friend who’s comfortable hanging out with a big group. I’m the friend who’s contented with two or three superclosefriends. I easily get lost in conversations, so it’s nice when you only need to focus on less than five people who can’t wait for their turn to share their stories. I tend to jump from one story to another, so I know how this feels.😉 I also noticed that I get quieter when I’m in a big group of friends.

I’d like to meet more people like me and who have done or doing the things that I’d love to do. Another saying is “Surround yourself with like-minded people” and “Surround yourself with people who inspire you”. So here you go, I’m putting myself out there so it would be easier to meet like-minded people.

I’m not a party girl and I treasure my sleeping time very much. I rarely sleep beyond 11PM unless it’s needed or I drank too much caffeine before my bedtime. That’s how lola I am. Hehe. I’ve gone to parties when I was in college for the sake of experience, but thrice is enough. I hate the noise (you can’t talk with people properly, you have to shout to hear each other, and shouting is very tiring and straining) and the smell of smoke, sweat, and drunk people’s breath. No prob with people I know who love to party as long as they don’t pressure me to go with them or they don’t give me drunk calls.🙂

I’m more of a laidback girl. I love quiet and cozy coffee or tea shops, plus points if they have creative walls and books. The beach is home for me. I like looking at the horizon while just listening to the waves crashing on the shore. I occasionally drink alcohol. I like a chill bonding over alcohol (and maybe board games).

I love going to new places. I don’t mind traveling solo from time to time since I am the kind who likes to be left alone after interacting with a lot of people. I’m a sucker for quiet moments. I very much appreciate that my boyfriend and I can do things separately together, like he studies beside me while I practice my brush calligraphy.

I LOOOOVE stationery products. I love notebooks, colorful pens, sticky notes, and planners!!! I saw a meme on Facebook that says something like “I like planners and colorful pens because they give me a feeling that I’m organized in my life.” Haha! It’s partly true, but I also love these because I’m forgetful. Color-coding and writing my plans and to-do’s help me keep track of my goals. I also love preserving memories through pictures and videos. I have a Nikon D3100, and on my 19th birthday, my dad gifted me a 50mm prime lens. Last year, my boyfriend gave me a Fujifilm Instax Mini 8. ♥ I used to be fond of scrapbooking until I realized that I can’t finish my scrapbooking projects anymore because they’re too demanding of time. Scrapbooking is also expensive. Right now, I’m into brush lettering/calligraphy. I need more practice, but you can check my work here: http://www.chelseashellsdoodles.tumblr.com! If you’re into this thing, maybe we can meet up and have a brush lettering date?🙂

I stopped working out regularly two months ago when I got sick. Sadly, I never got back into working out regularly since then. I take care of my health as much as I can; I work out and eat fresh food as much as possible, which is challenging since I don’t live with my family. I feel SO WEAK lately, and when I try to exercise, I easily get tired. Back to square one.😦 I realized that I need to do conditioning again, like jog, before I can do my BBG workouts again. Any Kayla Itsines followers here?🙂 I also want to try yoga and crossfit. I already started doing yoga before by watching YouTube videos, but maybe it’s better to do it in a class where there’s a teacher who can correct my pose. There’s a yoga class and crossfit gym near where I live, I better go to their trial class to find out if they’re for me.

I want to learn how to cook/bake, too!🙂 I’ve been wanting to buy a waffle maker or an oven. Maybe I’ll gift myself one this Christmas. I dream of having my own cafe/chill restaurant in the future.

Oh, I’m also interested in stocks and other investments. I would like to know more about forex trading and investing on real estates.

So, there you go, this is me.🙂 Hopefully, I can meet people who share the same likes and passion. It would be nice to exchange ideas with them.🙂