Hey all. I currently work in Tele, have been there for nine months (first nursing position) and I need some advice. My intention from the beginning has been to work tele until I feel confident enough in my skills to work in ICU (we have a 14 bed MICU/SICU/CCU). I already know many of the nurses that work there, they are right next door and get pulled to tele sometimes. I talk to them often about what kinds of patients they have, and it seems like the more I listen to these nurses, who are so amazingly on top of things it is awe-inspiring, the less I feel I will EVER be ready to do that. I want to sooo bad, but it feels like the more experience I get, the less prepared I feel. I know I have a solid foundation and that, for where I am at in the nursing hierarchy, I am a good nurse. But it feels so out of reach to ever be THAT GOOD. Any advice on educational/practice stuff I can do to help me get there would be much appreciated. Maybe it's just a confidence issue, I have no idea. Thanks in advance.
Jun 30, '02
The best way to know if you are ready is to try it!!! I started in the unit and I have the utmost respect for tele and M/S nurses. I don't know how you guys do it!! Sounds like your confidence might be a little shaky-it is scary trying new things. It sounds like you will have a good support system in the ICU where you are and that is half the battle. Knowing who to go to and who not to go to. It doesn't matter how long you work in a particular specialty, you will always be faced with new situations. GO FOR IT!!!
You won't build your confidence until you try what it is that you want to do. Talk to the ICU nurses if you will bestaying at that hospital and find out what types of patients they usually see and study up on that stuff. Your best teachers are your colleagues. Ask. I've been doing this for 10 years and I ask questions all the time.
Jun 30, '02
Definitely GO FOR IT. You sound like ideal ICU material. It's the ones who AREN'T worried that are scary! You will be that good. It takes time and the willingness to ASK questions. I went from Med-Surg into ICU. One of the hard-as-nails ICU nurses said to me about a year later..."I knew you'd be fine the one day you came into the station and said 'I NEED HELP--I've never done this before'." I had simply requested help in mixing a cardizem drip because I had never done that before...she was reassured that I'd be a good ICU nurse because I didn't just rush in and try to fake knowing what I was doing. No one expects you to come in the door and instantly be qualified.
Hopefully you'll get a preceptor who is knowledgeable and compassionate and who will guide you. Go for it!!! You won't regret it. ICU is great fun; I'm very happy to be there.
Jun 30, '02
Boy that is so true Zee. New nurses (either new to thr profession or veterns in a new specialty) who aren't scared for a while when they start sacre the living hell out of me. I feel the same way, if they ask questions I heave a sigh of relief!
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