I keep reading and hearing about how you’re supposed to take at least 10 weeks off from EVERYTHING and treat your bar prep like a full-time job; that it’s impossible to pass the bar while working full-time or part-time, et cetera. I think that’s a load of crap. It also smacks of scare tactics employed by bar prep providers to keep the bucks rolling in. I really hate coming across “advice” and stuff like that where they’re so convinced that you have to study nonstop for the bar from dawn to dusk, and give up everything else, including jobs and family. That’s crazy and completely unrealistic.
Granted, you should probably scale back extracurricular activities. I wanted to join an adult soccer league here but I’m waiting until after the bar. In the meanwhile, I’m sticking with swimming at least 3 times a week. I’m going home in a couple of weeks to visit my family for a few days, but that’s it. I plan to take my S&T book with me so I can work on the practice questions. I figure the S&T book alone should be sufficient for my trip with its 550-plus practice MBE questions.
I will be taking the week before the bar exam off from work, but I doubt I’ll take the 2 weeks off that I did last summer because I had quit my old job early to take those 2 weeks, and I also am not sure I’ll have enough leave from my current job to do that anyway. But I’m not worried about it. I managed to study for and pass the CO bar while working full-time so I know it can be done. I also know of at least one repeater who worked full-time right up to the bar exam, and he passed. Many other people have worked full-time and weren’t able to study full-time, but they passed.
That’s not to say that you should take as little time off before the bar as possible, though. Some people, myself included don’t really have much choice. I’m just saying that it can be done if absolutely and unavoidably necessary. Otherwise, the more time you can take off before the bar exam, the more likely it is to benefit you.