New grad RN, freaking out, is this normal??

  1. 3
    I am a new grad with no previous medical experience. I am starting my first RN job tomorrow morning at a Rehab/LTC and I am so nervous. I was told I will have orientation watching videos tomorrow then will spend 3-5 days with another nurse and then I will be on my own!

    I don't know anything about the facility other than what I read online. My "interview" was me filling out my background check sheets and employment verification forms. I was not told how many patients per hall/nurse, the types of patients, or anything at ALL except for my pay and hours. "Everything else will be covered in orientation." They never asked me a single question, not even "tell me a little about yourself"!

    I accepted the position because I need a job. My husband keeps telling me it isn't going to be as bad as I expect, but reading all the horror stories on here about new grads with the same experience is freaking me out. I don't want to put my patients or my license in jeopardy.

    I'm going to try it out, make it through orientation and see how I feel on my own. I will not hesitate on quitting immediately if I feel like I am in a bad situation, or putting my patients in a bad situation...

    Any advice?
    JacobJason, Joe V, and Blanca R like this.
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  3. 23 Comments so far...

  4. 2
    Your interview is similar to the way nurses were hired in the past, I wouldn't automatically assume that it indicates that the workplace is unsafe. If you want to know more about the working conditions, ask questions about them. Don't assume based on minimal information that your biased feelings are correct. Anticipating a negative/positive experience is the best way to ensure it will happen.
    Try not to assume that you will lose your licence, this paranoia is being instilled into new grads and it is couterproductive to learning how to grow from a novice to an expert nurse. Try thinking about the new job as a choice and that you are taking a chance that it will be a good experience, if not, the worst thing that will happen, is you won't like the job and you will quit.
    Last edit by dishes on Jul 14, '13
    CountyRat and ♪♫ in my ♥ like this.
  5. 0
    Keep your eyes open and ask all your questions. I had four weeks of full time orientation to LTC and it wasn't nearly enough. I would feel unsafe accepting less than that.
  6. 3
    Thanks. I am a pessimist with anxiety issues anyways, so I always expect the worse! Lol.
    I did ask questions at the interview, but I was just told I'll find out in orientation all details about the floor and # of patients.
    One good thing is that I'm usually good at making friends with LPNs and CNAs (or was in clinical at least) so I am hoping that might help.
    Really hoping its going to be better than I am expecting. The pay is amazing compared to anywhere else in the area for a new grad, and since it is a rehab & specialty care, I am sure I would get great experience with a variety of things.
    Keeping my fingers crossed it goes well!
    klone, 1feistymama, and dishes like this.
  7. 0
    The first job in nursing is a very steep learning curve, it is good that you recognize the importance of building rapport with the other team members, all rehab team members (even the patients) are potential teachers for a new grad.
  8. 0
    I was a manger at a fast food restaraunt for 8 years before going into nursing, so I know how valuable good teamwork is! Nothing will make a job harder than having the people you supervise or work with not like you!

    I think the main thing I am worried about is the not knowing. There are so many skills I haven't done yet other than on mannequin in lab (such as inserting IVs or Foleys, or anything to do with central lines), I've only given maybe 4 shots, less than 10 insulin administrations and and a couple IV meds. I think I hung one IV med. It really scares me to think I'll be doing these things for the first time without a preceptor or any help/advice.
  9. 0
    Both your past expereince and your fears are good information for your colleagues to know. It is also helpful if you can identify your preferred learning style; auditory, visual, kinesthetic, or reflective. If possible try to learn from nurses who have the same learning style as you, because people tend to teach others in their own dominent learning style. I learn best by tactile and visual, so this is the way I am most proficient at teaching others a skill.
  10. 7
    The same story as mine. 100 days later, I am doing great. I was lucky to have other nurses that helped. Just make sure to ask all kinds of questions even if they seem dumb to you...I assure you, they are not. I went into nursing as a second career and started this year at age 52. I have learned a lot and no longer get nervous when I walk up to the door to go to work. YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  11. 0
    Thank you ricksy!! I feel better hearing success stories from people who did it and made it. I can't wait for the day I feel comfortable as a nurse!
  12. 0
    3-5 days' shadowing doesn't seem like nearly enough. Would you be willing to shadow on your own time? Perhaps go in a couple of hours early to shadow the nurse whom you'll be relieving or go in on a day off and shadow for half a shift?? Any opportunity to learn more, even if it is unpaid, will make you more confident and help you conquer these fears. It's great that you will partner with LPNs and CNAs as well, but they aren't trained to do everything you're trained for.
    Last edit by 1feistymama on Jul 15, '13


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