Brand New CNA and I got a job!

  1. Hello, fellow nursing folks!

    I've just registered here because I want to share that I'm sooo excited that I finally got a job and I want to tell you all about it! I got my CNA a few years ago when I was in high school, but I never worked as one. I didn't have enough confidence in myself, so I barely tried to, and never got, a CNA job.

    Now, after doing some soul searching, I've decided nursing really is what I want to do. I'm a very kind, caring, gentle person so I believe I'll be a natural at comforting patients. So I reactivated my CNA and started looking for a job. I've heard from numerous people that new CNAs usually have to start out in LTC or SNFs, usually for elderly patients. Don't get me wrong, but geriatrics just isn't what I'm really interested in. So I submitted my application for a local rehabilitation hospital, and I ended up getting the job! I never would have thought I would, since I'm an inexperienced, "stale new grad" so to speak. I do realize that rehab will probably include elderly people, but hopefully there will be a wide range of patients.

    The problem is, I'm also very nervous. I have been diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder, as well as clinical depression and avoidant personality disorder. I'm trying to break free of these problems, and I already have to an extent; getting this job was a huge accomplishment for me. But I'm worried that I'm going to be a bad CNA, that I'm going to be too quiet, not confident enough with patients, that my coworkers won't like me, and I'll do a bad job, the list goes on and on. I'm sure any of you who have anxiety problems know what that's like.

    Do any current CNAs or nurses have any suggestions for me? What can I do to be a good CNA? What bad traits should I make sure to avoid? And what can I expect in the field of rehabilitation? I just want to be the best I can be, for my coworkers and my patients.

    I should mention that I am also going to get my LPN, I am on a waiting list at my community college and I will start in October. My eventual goal is to become an RN, but I'm taking this one step at a time. I believe that once I gain some experience, my confidence will be much better, and then I will be ready to take the next step. That's why I'm doing my LPN first, then my RN.

    Thanks, everyone! (sorry for the long post) And good luck to fellow CNAs trying to get jobs. Don't give up
  2. Visit misslindsay profile page

    About misslindsay

    Joined: Jan '13; Posts: 3


  3. by   esand
    Wow, we are so alike, you and I. I've got extreme anxiety and tend to panic a lot. I keep a little bottle of Rescue Remedy in my pocket at work for when I feel a panic coming on.

    Anyway, I just got a job at a skilled nursing facility last week, and started on Saturday. I had all of the same worries as you: That people wouldn't like me, I'd be annoying, I'd be too slow, I'd be a bad CNA. I've gotten over the fears of those around me hating me because once you start working, you realize very quick that you're not there to make friends. I know that sounds so cliche, and I would sigh everytime somebody told me that before this job. BUT, it's true. Also, every single person (spare a couple of girls that sneer at me) that I've met has been overly friendly and has tried as hard as possible to make me feel welcome. If I were you, I would ask to be trained on more than one shift, which I did, just so that you can kind of get a feel for the type of people on each one and know which one you would prefer to work on if the oppurtunity arose, you know? I prefer 2nd shift, but my home shift is 1st. Blah.

    As far as what you have to do to be a good CNA, wow there are a lot of things here, so I'll just tell you what people dislike. Don't gossip, ever. People will write you off quickly unless they gossip themselves, but don't get in with those people. They're detrimental to your job. Try and be as helpful as possible, even if you're slow. If they see you're making an effort, they'll overlook your slowness at first. Smile and be friendly to everybody, this is the biggest tip. Just be friendly, and be open to constructive criticism.

    I'm still struggling to get the tasks of this job down, and it's not a walk in the park. But just remember why you did this in the first place. <3
  4. by   misslindsay
    Hi! It makes me feel so much better just knowing that I'm not alone, that others have anxiety too and can do the job successfully. Thanks for all your advice too.

    I will be working 2nd shift, but I'm told that this company trains their staff really well before they are turned loose, so I'm trying not to worry.
    Anyway, congrats on getting your job! Are you planning on going to nursing school?
  5. by   esand
    At some point, yes, but I'm going to gather tons of experience as an aide before I do so, just so that I know I'll find a job as an RN.
  6. by   MTonmymind
    Don't be afraid to ask questions or get clarification on shouldn't be expected to know everything right off the bat
    Don't take shortcuts it is too easy to fall into the trap of taking the shortcut to save time. But, in long run it just adds more work.

    Try and stay positive, even if a patient is upset, or combative, or disgruntled. I try to keep a smile on my face and a cheery tone when I approach patients.