Nursing in itself is one physically and mentally draining job. Freshly graduated nurses face some of the most daunting tasks during their initial years, preparing them for some of the most daunting tasks.
Having to work and adjust in a new environment, putting your skills to practical use, and maintaining a certain level of professionalism are just some of the things you have to do as a new nurse. To say it can get overwhelming would be an understatement.
You start to question your life decisions, such as when you decided to become a nurse. Moreover, you overthink whether you’re competent enough. Almost every other aspiring and experienced nurse has faced this dilemma.
It’s always good to have a helping hand. However, in today’s competitive world, that can be tough. But have no fear. To help you survive and thrive, here is what you should be mentally prepared to expect.
Consider Becoming a Nurse Practitioner
Becoming the best of the lot is most definitely a great feeling, which is why you may want to consider becoming a nurse practitioner. What differentiates a nurse practitioner from a registered nurse is, perhaps, that practitioners can prescribe treatments, diagnose, and order tests on their patients.
Generally, physicians carry out these duties. To become one, you need to pursue a Master’s degree in the same field. To polish existing skills and learn new methods of enhancing patient care quality, you can enroll in a nurse practitioner online degree.
Moreover, becoming a nurse practitioner will allow you to have a long and successful career.
The Real World is Very Different From Nursing School
Studying in an educational environment is one thing, but putting all that education to practical use is another. On top of that, passing the NCLEX exam is an intimidating yet necessary task. On the job, you learn how to become a nurse and how to deal with real-life situations.
Interacting with patients and dealing with real-life scenarios only brings out the best in a nurse. Through crucial decision-making and applicating their skills and what they have learned, nurses become the professionals they are.
Perhaps, this is why nurses ought to be good at time management. Most senior nurses agree that freshly graduated nurses should have to deal with more and more patients to prepare them for the real world and, as a result, their NCLEX exam.
Along with time management, prioritizing is crucial. As a result, both of these will help one another get better over time.
Prioritizing is simple to do yet slightly hard to decide. For example, always take a look at the sickest and oldest patients first. Also, most of the time, 12-hour shifts turn out to last longer and end up draining you to the point of burnout.
New nurses are not at all prepared for this. As students, nurses generally do not complete 12-hour shifts; that is why they face difficulties after graduation.
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Continue Learning On The Go
Being a know-it-all will never get you anywhere in life. Regardless of how brilliant a student you may have been, you must humble yourself and continue learning. Nursing school and being a nurse in the world are two entirely different things.
The nursing school only teaches you what you must know. The real world prepares you for what you will have to encounter. As a new nurse, you will face many obstacles and make countless mistakes. What you ought to know is that it is okay to do so. Nobody is perfect.
Learn from your mistake and move on. Books give you knowledge, but the real world teaches you how to put that knowledge to use.
Respect The Elders
Senior nurses are easily irritated by new, cocky nurses. That is because most new nurses believe they are always right and know what they are doing. Some may say the nurses misunderstand the generation gap for cockiness.
However, if you can put your ego aside and be willing to learn from experienced nurses, you are bound to reach heights of success. Try to take all the advice you can get from your seasoned nurses. As a result, it will come in handy, and you can get a lot of encouragement from them.
However, it is not necessary to carry out duties the same way. For example, you may notice that your senior nurses do not perform their duties the way you have read in textbooks. To most new nurses, this may be very odd.
However, these experienced nurses know what they are doing. It is necessary to understand why they do some things the way they do it. Learning from them will only benefit you in the long run.
Find Someone to Look Up to
Most nurses believe they are not ready for practical life, despite getting their license. Unfair treatment and derogatory remarks tend to leave a permanent scar. Because of this, nurses tend to become demotivated or change their careers altogether.
However, even the smallest tokens of appreciation can have a lasting effect. Supportive and caring senior nurses having the necessary leadership qualities can bring out the very best in their counterparts.
To achieve this, senior nurses can help out new nurses when they fumble. They can also give their honest feedback without being blunt.
Mentorship is something everyone craves in all workplaces. To bring out the very best in nurses, mentors can play a huge role. To have someone who will answer all your valid questions alongside not belittling you is a blessing.
Moreover, they can also be someone who can help you thrive sooner than you may have presumed. Regardless of how hesitant you are, ask the questions that won’t let you sleep at night. Clear out all your queries. Only through this way will you be able to become an excellent nurse.
Never Stop Thriving
You get into your comfort zone, and things start to go your way. However, this does not mean you must stop going after greatness. The hindrances of your nursing career may die down after the first year.
Continuing your education does not always signify studying further or pursuing another degree. It means you must learn as you settle into your new position. Nurses, too, need to be on their toes.
You must keep yourself up to date with all medications and medical terms. Go through your textbooks time and again to make you the brilliant nurse you aspire to be.
Alongside working on yourself, work on becoming a better aid to your fellow nurses and doctors. Doing so will make you stand out and will also help you get better at your job.
Nursing, indeed, is a noble occupation. To do your part as a functioning member of society is a commendable act. Though, like every field, nursing can be intimidating. However, the tips from seasoned nurses mentioned above will help you prepare yourself for what lies ahead in your bright future.