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8 Pointers For Your First Year As A Nurse

You have just gotten your license to practice as a nurse and are very much excited to start your new job. But along with excitement, there is also anxiety and stress about it. You want things to go well and make a good impression on those around you. Hence, in this article, we will give you some advice to make your first year as a new nurse smoother and help you grow.

  1. Don't Be A Wallflower:

    Starting your first-ever nursing job in a new facility can be intimidating. There is so much to figure out about the place, the staff, how things work, and the list goes on! Along with it, you are bombarded with new faces every day.

    If you are shy, you might feel uncomfortable in the situation and feel it's not worth introducing yourself since people just don't care. But actually, they do! They wanna know who this charming new nurse is who would be working with them.

    So when you start your job, be the person who introduces yourself and gets to know other people as well. This way, you will make friends or at least acquaintances with people working around you.
  2. Have A "Go-To" Person:

    As you introduce yourself and get to know people, you'll inevitably find some senior nurses or doctors with whom you click immediately. And if you ask them politely, they will be happy to guide you.

    Make these people your go-to person and consult them whenever you have a doubt or difficulty. This will help you attain high professional growth and seem like someone eager to learn and grow.
  3. Don't Be Afraid To Ask Questions:

    When you start at a new place, you don't want to seem dumb. But the fact is, the more you try not to seem dumb, the more your chances of doing something dumb!

    When you start your job, there will be many things you need to learn. May it be hospital procedures, policies, or something else. Hence, whenever you are in doubt, ask your seniors or the go-to person about them. They, too, have been in your position once and will understand your situation. They will be more than willing to help you out.
  4. Work On Your Poker Face:

    When you are a nurse, along with seeing people heal and recover, you will also see some unusual and disturbing things. May it be some terrible injury, bone or organs protruding from the body, people coding and dying, or something else. During these situations, you need to learn to keep a poker face and not let your facial expressions show your emotions.

    So start practicing your poker face now!
  5. Observe The Experts:

    Just because you have graduated from nursing school and passed NCLEX doesn't mean your learning has ceased. On the contrary, you can learn a lot by observing your senior nurses and doctors on how they conduct the procedures and examinations and interact with the patients.

    Observing and internalizing these behaviors from experts can help you learn.
  6. Be Prepared When Asking For A Doctor:

    When you call in a doctor for a patient situation, be sure to be prepared to make the interaction as smooth as possible. Create a list of things you need to tell them and keep the patient's chart handy. Also, keep a pen and diary to write down any instructions they might provide you.
  7. Keep Your Notes Organized:

    As a nurse, you will be fulfilling the requests and demands of patients, doctors, and other healthcare staff. Unfortunately, this can confuse you and make you forget a few things.

    Hence, having a diary and noting everything down in an organized way makes it easier to be on top of things. Of course, with time, you will gain experience and not need to take notes, but getting to that level will take time. Until then, don't feel shy about taking notes.
  8. Trust That Confidence Will Come With Time:

    When you start as a nurse, you maybe feel underconfident about your capabilities and may feel like you don't belong there. But it is essential to know that this is normal. Likewise, it is normal to feel overwhelmed and unsure about yourself with starting a new role.

    Keep learning and keep a growth mindset; confidence in yourself will soon follow!

Take away:

Though joining the workforce can be intimidating initially, you have got this! You have worked hard in nursing school and gotten licensed to practice. You can do it! Just follow the above advice and do your best. And there will be no time before you get settled in your position and become an exceptional nurse.