How to Reduce Stress in Three Minutes

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We realize that the typical law student will experience stressful situations during his or her law school career. To that end, we previously have posted information on stress reduction resources available in the Law Library and useful stress reduction advice. Both of these pieces lightly touch on some key aspects of mindfulness. What exactly is mindfulness? Mindfulness can be defined as being in a state of hyper-consciousness fully focused on the present moment. No time for past, present or future judgments here. The many benefits of mindfulness are scientifically proven. If willing, anyone can participate in various mindfulness techniques and practices. No special skills are required. One method that I have found helpful is the 3-minute breathing space (3MBS) technique. I like it because it takes only 3 minutes!

  1. Minute One. Relax and let your thoughts go wild. Again, no judgments just experience the wide kaleidoscope of thoughts flowing and out.
  2. Minute Two. Next, narrow the focus of your thoughts. Focus on your breathing. Unlike minute one, your thoughts here are very fixated.
  3. Minute Three. Finally, focus on the sensations of the body. These can be in one particular area or various areas of the body.

Do you have 3-minutes to spare? Try the 3MBS technique next time you are faced with a stressful situation and pressed for time. Who is not these days?

Internet Resources Available Through Law Library

As you may already know, the Law Library has a tremendous amount of electronic databases to meet just about every research need. You may not know however that the Law Library also has a fantastic, rich compilation of online Internet resources organized by subject. These are resources that are free to anyone with Internet access. Compiled and organized by our law librarians, this page contains hundreds of free, special-interest resources. Resources are grouped by subject, then by category. Below is an alphabetical listing of the various subjects found on this page.

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Just to highlight one of the Subjects, below is a listing of the type of resources that are included within the Environmental Law topic. The links provided for each of the respective subjects are a great way to find background information on a research topic.

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If you would like to suggest an Internet Resource, add to this list, or find a needed correction, please let us know at reference.law@ttu.edu.

Law Library Resources for Stress-Free Law Student and Attorney Careers

It’s no secret that law school and law practice are demanding endeavors. The legal literature is replete with articles on the subject. In addition to the law school’s many student resources, the Law Library has you covered. The Law Library has numerous books in its collection that directly relate to coping with the demands of law school and beyond. Some of these books are temporarily behind the circulation desk on course reserve—stress relief. Below are a few sample books that you might find useful and can be checked out.

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  1. Yoga for Lawyers (KF 310 A43 L67 2014)

The authors are both law graduates and know firsthand the demands of law school. With photos and description of various Yoga poses, this book covers such topics as Restorative Yoga, Yoga in the office and on the go, meditation and calming the mind just to name a few.  According to the authors, the books offers “techniques that can be practiced at home, in the office, and even while taking a break in court.” They claim that their techniques, “can help you improve your law practice by shaping your ability to concentrate and bettering your overall state of mind and well-being.”

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  1. The Anxious Lawyer: An 8-Week Guide to a Joyful and Satisfying Law Practice Through Mindfulness and Meditation (KF 298 C47 2016)

This book provides a straightforward 8-week introductory program on meditation and mindfulness, created by lawyers for lawyers. For example, the book covers topics on:

  • Simple meditation techniques
  • Guidance for establishing a daily meditation and mindfulness practice
  • Practical tools, including access to guided meditations and worksheets that allow one to track his or her progress

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  1. The Reflective Counselor: Daily Meditations for Lawyers (KF 298 C633 2008)

This work offers a meditation-a-day, designed for law students and lawyers alike. Each daily entry includes an introductory quotation, followed by a reflection which is intended to inspire the reader toward optimal performance and well-being.

Remember, these and other books are currently located behind the Law Library circulation desk on course reserve. Stop by and browse at your leisure. The law librarians and staff are here to help you succeed in law school and beyond.

Helpful Resources for Students

Late September, early October is when 1L students start realizing that the law school workload is unquestionably intense, and the Law Library is here to help. In addition to having a diverse array of legal information, the Law Library also features librarians, staff, and resources that can guide you through the maze of coursework. The following are a few of the many helpful resources available to students.

1. Research Guides

The Law Library Reference Team has created a rich set of research guides to assist students to gain a better understanding of course materials, instruction, general reference, and other topics. For instance, the Law Library’s Research Guide Series contains explanations of the major concepts and related resources, references to study guides, and other helpful information for 1L, advanced required, and particular elective courses.

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2. List of Books, Study Aids, & Other Resources

The Reporter (Law Library Blog), has published multiple references to books and online resources available to students to augment class materials. In particular, see prior postings on:

  1. Entering 1L Students: The Law Library’s Selective Summer Browsing List (by Arturo Torres). The list contains a short list of books highlighting general information on what to expect and how to succeed in law school.
  2. CALI Lessons (by Jamie Baker). CALI (Computer Assisted Legal Instruction) includes over 50 web-based tutorials and lessons covering more than 35 law school subjects. Also, this post provides registration information and how to start using your CALI account.
  3. Study Aids in the Law Library (by Sue Kelleher). The post explains the different types of study aids and where you can find them.
  4. Study Guides Available in Print and Online (by Marin Dell). This provides additional descriptions of the Law Library’s collection of study guides and treatises for all 1L and upper-level law courses.

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3. Law Library Reference Support Team

The Law Library Reference Team is available and ready to assist by phone 806-742-7155, via email, walk-ins, or by appointment to answer questions about searching and navigating within the Library’s print and online resources. Reference team members are available Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Opinions with Internet Citations are Safeguarded by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals

Courts increasingly continue to cite to Internet resources in opinions. Over time, it is rare to find hyperlinks that still work, resulting in link rot. Link rot occurs when the hyperlink no longer works or disappears, typically leading to the now ubiquitous 404 error—page not found—message. Since about 2007 Federal court law libraries have been preserving intent citations in opinions, including the Fifth Circuit.

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The Fifth Circuit, along with the other U. S. circuits, captures the cited Internet reference by converting the original documents and web pages as .pdf files. According to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Law Library, “[u]sing the URL referenced in the opinion, the original copy is saved with a watermark to denote the document’s archived status.” In addition to posting the archived URLs on the library website several Circuits are also adding the materials to the official case docket and PACER. Unfortunately, the Fifth Circuit has yet to do so.

Fifth Circuit opinions are arranged in descending docket number order. A sample entry is noted below. By clicking on a URL, one retrieves a .pdf copy of the resource as it existed at the time of filing with the Court. Each resource listed is a link to an archived copy.

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Entering 1L Students: The Law Library’s Selective Summer Browsing List

We certainly do not expect you to read all of the books noted below. Some of them probably won’t make much sense until you start classes. However, you can still flip through them this summer to get a feel of what law school is about. All of these books can be found in and borrowed from the law library.

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1L of a Ride : A Well-Traveled Professor’s Roadmap to Success in the First Year of Law School by Cecil C. Humphreys.
This book provides practical advice on how to succeed in law school both academically and emotionally from perspectives of an experienced law professor and anecdotes from former students. The author claims
“. . . to provide new students with a candid, beginning-to-end roadmap to the first year of law school, along with the navigational and other tools to complete the sojourn scholastically accomplished and emotionally intact.”

 

Getting to MaybeGetting to Maybe: How to Excel on Law School Exams by Richard Michael Fischl and Jeremy Paul.
Law school test questions are different from most all other examinations. As such, there may be more than one correct answer, hence the title of the book, Getting to Maybe. Mostly it’s the analysis that matters on law school essay examinations. The authors do an excellent job in explaining the importance of legal analysis over the mere “correct answer.” They focus on making sure the reader understands legal analysis when taking law school tests.

 

Reading Like a LawyerReading Like a Lawyer: Time-Saving Strategies for Reading Law Like an Expert by Ruth Ann McKinney.
As law students, you will be reading more than ever. Good reading is not innate, but a skill that can be learned. The author’s purpose for the book is
“. . . to teach you . . . how to read law-related material as efficiently, effectively, and powerfully as possible.”

 

 

Legal Writing in Plain EnglishLegal Writing in Plain English: A Text with Exercises by Bryan A. Garner.
The author has taught an accelerated course at Texas Tech School of Law during the past few summers. Like taking law school tests, legal writing often requires an altogether different style of writing than you have done in the past. We encourage you to browse the book that way you will know what to expect and can get in the right frame of mind before beginning classes in the fall.

 

 

Law School ConfidentialLaw School Confidential: A Complete Guide to the Law School Experience: by Students, for Students by Robert H. Miller.
The author presents a guide for law students, and discusses the application process, financing, preparation for classes, curriculum, honor codes, competition, recruiting, and other related topics.

GPO to Digitize all Issues of the Federal Register

federalregisterThe U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) recently announced that it plans to make every issue of the Federal Register digitally available to the public. Approximately 14,587 individual issues, which go back to 1936, will be digitized. The digitization is expected to be completed in 2016. Currently, digital versions dating from 1994 to the present are available on GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys). The Federal Register is updated daily by 6 a.m. and is published Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. (Source: Federal Depository Library Program).