Should I continue mock trial?

Hello CC community,

I am a junior and I am currently debating between what ECs to continue. You can find my previous thread here, which discusses schedule-load (this current thread IS different btw): https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/high-school-life/2194516-planning-ecs-for-junior-year-are-100hr-weeks-normal-p1.html

I am deciding to continue with my ECs but I’m still feeling iffy about mock trial. I’m finally good enough at mock trial that I’m getting performing roles, and I’m pretty sure that if I work hard, I can become a main member (and maybe even become captain senior year). Our team is near the top in the state, with national experience, so it’s very competitive.

I like mock trial, but I’m noticing that I’m feeling less passionate about it compared to before (which may be because it’s all virtual, and I would hate to quit if I’m still happy about it). I’ve also had difficult experiences with toxic team members and overall feel anxious being in that environment more than my baseline (which is already elevated lol).

What’s making me feel especially ambivalent is the time commitment. Mock trial meetings are anywhere from 5-8hrs a week, with 2-4hrs of outside time expected for performing members, which adds up to 7-12hrs a week of work (if I become a captain, it’ll be 9-15hrs). I do have a reduced homework load this year because of virtual school, but I’m worried that my demanding schedule elsewhere will cause me to either underperform with mock trial, or underperform with my other ECs, ultimately leading to less fulfillment.

There’s also a lot of pressure from all around to continue mock trial. I poured my heart and soul into it these last two years, so the team already expects a lot from me, and there’s an unspoken expectation on the team that you’ll continue all 4 years of HS. All the forums I look at with people in similar situations urge them to continue mock because it looks good for college apps, and, as toxic at it sounds, I feel obligated to continue for my team and for college.

Everyone around me is balancing tons of ECs and performing so well in them, and I feel like I’m being weak or lazy if I decide to quit mock trial because I’m worried I’ll be too overwhelmed. If I quit mock, I’ll definitely have more time to dedicate to my self-started ECs (2 student orgs, 1 of which is a volunteer org), volunteering, my research position, scholarship search, etc. But I feel an overwhelming expectation that I should be able to be a nationally-ranked figure skater, have 3 leadership positions, be involved in multiple school clubs, effortlessly manage 100+hr weeks, AND be fantastic at mock.

Would it be a good idea to quit mock trial? Am I just being weak and whiny? Please be brutally honest - this is the type of feedback I am not getting from people in my life.

Thank you!

My brutally honest recommendation is that you should continue with the ECs that you want to do, and drop the rest. This does assume that you have some ECs that you care about and want to continue.

High school should not be an exercise in trying to pile up the stress as much as possible. There is a limit to what any one student should do.

“I feel an overwhelming expectation that I should be able to be a nationally-ranked figure skater, have 3 leadership positions, be involved in multiple school clubs, effortlessly manage 100+hr weeks, AND be fantastic at mock.”

To me this sounds like too much. Just figure skating and school by itself is a LOT.

I remember seeing your other post. Don’t feel pressure to continue mock trial especially since “it’s an expectation todo it all four years” if anything other kids won’t mind that you leave because it will open up a leadership position for them. It’s clear you’re a passionate student don’t do something that dampens your passion.

I managed to become a fairly successful trial attorney without doing mock trial in either HS or college. If it’s something that you no longer feel passion for, don’t continue just because, as eventually, your lack of passion will rear its head and negatively impact your team. It’s not a bad thing to give up an EC if it no longer brings you pleasure or you have other activities you prefer. It’s better to quit than pursue something halfheartedly.

Good luck…

I guess what’s holding me back is anxiety that I will end up regretting my decision, my team will be disappointed in me, and that it will negatively impact my college apps. It’s very hard for me to quit things, especially things that I love(d?) I will definitely take time to think about my decision and potentially talk to some friends

I have a student who absolutely adores Mock Trial and I’m really sorry to hear about your toxic team environment especially given how much time Mock Trial requires.

If you choose to let go of this team what other teams do you have in place in your life? Is this the only place where the team dynamic is hard or do you struggle in other places too? (NOT trying to be rude or divisive, just asking you to reflect inside yourself on this season of challenge.)

If Mock Trial is eating up your time and you have another place you can land that you love or even just wish to invest more time in, I would encourage you to go for it and drop Mock Trial. It could be a really amazing college essay about learning what you love and do not love and where you will choose to invest and keep going and when it’s time to walk away. Only you can answer those questions.

If you choose to stay with Mock Trial can you invite someone to join you? Can you confide in a coach that you are at your wit’s end about the team dynamics? What can you do to bring change, even small change?

I think in this situation only you can find the right answer, but maybe you should talk to a few more people who are closer to the situation first. A coach may be able to influence the dynamic. You’ve put in a lot of hard work, don’t walk away until you are able to say you’ve done all you can.

I think it can work out either way, but the best possible outcome is when you do all you can to improve the team. If you cannot help create change, let go and feel peace about that. Your college essay will be interesting to read, no matter what!

@DadTwoGirls @flamingogirl @99Techmom @2kidcollege Thank you guys so much for your advice! I’m definitely going to talk to the captains about it and see if anything can be done to change the environment. I’m planning on sticking it out for another month to see if there’s any improvement and I’ll take it from there