There are many office jobs at which you can show up for a day of work and cruise through without necessarily getting much done. Court reporting isn't one of them. If you're a new court reporter, you've likely learned very quickly that it's critical for you to be alert and attentive throughout your entire workday, even if it runs long. Your ability to use the stenograph machine quickly and accurately to relay what people are saying in court will provide legal records of the proceedings that many people will need to reference in the days and weeks ahead. In order to do your job proficiently, you'll need to be physically and mentally prepared. Here are some tips that you can use.
Ensure That You're Well Rested
Some employees stay up late and then struggle to be alert through their workday, but you can't take this approach. It's imperative that you report to court feeling rested. This will allow you to not only use your stenograph machine quickly, but also follow what people are saying so that you can type the comments verbatim. There are many different strategies that you can employ to ensure that you're well rested. Going to bed early, keeping your room dark, and avoiding the use of electronic devices in bed can all help you to sleep well so that you're rested for your shift the following day.
Get A Little Exercise
One of the lesser-considered challenges of being a court reporter is that you need to sit for long periods of time. While the attorneys around you will be in and out of their seats perhaps dozens of times, you'll remain seated at your small desk. You don't want to allow stiffness and soreness to be an obstacle to you doing your job correctly. For example, if you're aware of how sore your back feels, you're not paying your full attention to doing your job. A little exercise before your workday, such as a walk or a jog in the morning, can loosen your muscles and prepare you for a long period of sitting.
It may seem as though it's a good idea to sip coffee when you're able to perhaps even take an energy drink before you report for work. These products can certainly help to keep fatigue at bay, which is something that can threaten your ability to accurately report what people are saying in court. However, because caffeine is a stimulant, it can also leave you feeling a little flustered — which isn't something that you need when you're trying to listen carefully and follow a fast-paced discussion. Generally, the use of stimulants is best to avoid before your shift as a court reporter.
To learn more, reach out to a company like Farrell Court Reporting.