New nurse feeling low2

  1. Sorry about this post. I had written a detailed account of my horrible night at work and then hit the wrong button! But I guess I will just summarize my situation: New nurse, doing pretty good I think, Critical, picky charge nurse questioning my every move. Hurt my feelings, made me feel incompetent, spending lots of time rehearsing the evening and trying to get to the point where I can put it out of my mind and tell myself "It's okay, You are still a good nurse"
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   jayna
    Hey!.keep on telling yourself you're a great nurse. But keep this in mind.Show that picky charge nurse, that you trained as a nurse like her, next time when she is supervising , working hard towards your goal.
    You'll be a nurse nurse in future...cheers
  4. by   jayna
    what i mean is you will be a great nurse in future..
    gosh!! i need to check my mails before posting..but it is cos am in a hurry...

    When ever you think about your small problem, try as much as possible to put it behind you... and heyyyyyy..keep smiling!!!
    people made mistake, not every nurses are perfect.
    I made mistakes too, but if the charge nurse is being picky, i snapped at them....hahaha....joking!!...
  5. by   peter73
    hey shavsha,
    Keep this in mind next time that happens. Some, not all more experienced nurses hold new nurses up to the same skill standards as a nurse who has years of experience. It is not that you are not a good nurse, you are a new nurse; the difference is years of personal experiences and upper level critical thinking and skill only learned on the floor, working with other nurses with this knowledge. As a new nurse you can be expected to have the general and basic knowledge required to function safly on a nursing unit. The key is basic meaning basiic skill and knowledge, after all that is what NKLEX tests.
    When I was a new nurse I ran in to a few of the critical experienced staff and one was the nurse manager of my unit. It was nursing hell. This really helped me to defuse the situation:
    I got the experienced nurses to think of themselves as my mentor, guiding me to higher skill and knowledge. Which is what they did.
    When ever one of the critical nurses started to chew me up and spit me out I would remind them that I was a recent grad and they never explained this situation or just touched on this, etc. I would then simply ask them as a nurse with years of building knowledge and skill to explain what they would do and why so that I can learn to be as good as them.
    This got me the knowledge I needed to function at a higher level as well as not gete eaten alive by some of the nursing staff. It also gave the nurse in question a feeling of your submission to them, a good thing, if the nurse is a charge nurse and then feels as you will follow her direction.
    I will bet that most of us have been in a situation like this, and it is not that we are bad nurses, just new ones and someone forgot you don't graduate with years of experience, skill and confidence under your belt.
    Don't be too hard on yourself. It does get better.
    And just a note; for all nurses: Please, please remember how you felt as a new nurse when you have new nurses needing guidence.
    peter
  6. by   canna42
    The first 5 yrs I worked in nursing , I worked under a charge nurse we called Hitler. After going home crying many nights I started being sure Ihad everything done b4 she could even ask me to do it. On hindsight..much as I hate to admit it...she was the best charge nurse I ever worked under. She taught me organization and pushed me to do without guidance. I am stubborn so I was not about to let her win and make me quit. This experience of pickiness served me well. Its tough to take but in our business accuracy in all you do is a must. It will help to look at the learning experience. Work at organization and accuracy .. you will be surprised the first time look on her face when you are ahead of her. Best wishes and pray a lot.
  7. by   ArleneD
    I just started clinicals last week, so I have a long way to go before being in your shoes. Please give me a heads up so I can be on the lookout for the hospital Hitlers and prepare for the battlefield. What kinds of things, specifically, do they chew you out about?
  8. by   canna42
    It was not exactly what I call a chewing out...more attitude..huffing and puffing..making me feel incompetent. She would bark at me..Do you have ...done yet? Why have you not done this yet ? etc. I carefully did everything I could think of so I could answer YES..already done! We didn't have the internet then but I read all I could and listened to anything anyone had to say. When others see you really want to learn...they actually enjoy teaching you. I learned a lot from the "older nurses and nurse assistants." I watched nurses that I had a high opinion of to see how they handled situations...I am a ppl watcher anyway. Every unit I floated to I got nosy in all their business esp ICU but told them I liked learning even stuff out of my scope of practice. I figure all information is valuable. You will toughen up some as you go along but look at every reprimand as a lesson to learn and work at not taking it personnally...always admit your mistakes. If you make a mistake..and all humans do..run to the nearest charge nurse. I have seen a few who tried to cover up their mistakes...big mistake and could cause great harm to a patient. Most mistakes are harmless but if not evaluated as to why it occured the next one could be deadly. In 25yrs this has served me well...hope it helps you.
  9. by   sharann
    Oops, I posted my reply to your reply instead of your original post here. Read it if you want and good luck!
  10. by   thisnurse

    dont feel bad. it does get better, i promise!
    with any new job there is that "breaking in" period where you just dont fit in. and there are always those few who will do what they can to make sure you dont.
    ive found that in nursing, for some reason, you really have to prove yourself to your coworkers.
    ive cried a few times, no doubt ill cry a few more.
    its been nearly 6 months and i am FINALLY starting to fit in. i have made some friends there and feel accepted.
    not only was one of the charge nurses on me but just about everyone i worked with was checking everything i did.
    in report i was always being asked questions i didnt have an answer for.
    in time you will learn what is expected of you....you will have no choice...they will beat it in your head.
    i still have one of the charge nurses on my back but thats ok because i TRULY believe with her nagging and put downs shes trying to make me a better nurse. yes my feelings have been hurt a million times over. in my heart...like you ...i KNOW im a good nurse and that gave me the strength to carry on.
    the best advice i can give you is to LISTEN TO REPORT...this will tell you what the other nurses expect of you. kind of keep an ear open to other nurses reports. that tells you what they expect done and what you have to know.
    youll get used to it.
    give yourself some time...it will come about
  11. by   shavsha
    Thank you so much. Your encouragement really helps. Thanks for the tips...Yes, rather than taking things personally I will try to treat such times as learning experiences. Blessings.
  12. by   CATHYW
    Shavsa, everyone here has given you excellent advice, especially asking the older nurses for their opinions. Do not EVER ask them to do your work, unless there is an emergency. Any time you have a moment, offer to lend a hand, but don't let yourself be a doormat. Avail yourself of any opportunity to learn, even if it means coming in and not getting paid for it. Show folks that you are willing to learn, that you listen when they speak, and that you are a diligent nurse who cares about her patients. Get to know the physicians, and talk with the ones who are willing to teach about your patients. Not chitchat mind you, and not in a way to make them think you are questioning their expertise, but in way that makes them know that you are interested in learning more, as a health professional. You would be amazed at what they are willing to share. Before you become involved in any conversation with anyone, though, be sure that those meds are passed, vitals taken, shift assessments are done, piggybacks hung, anybody fed that isn't a self-feed, dressings are changed, foleys are emptied, I &0's are up to date, beds and baths are done, Accu cheks done (and charted) and that your charting is pretty much up to date.
    Try not to get in the habit of waiting for other people to answer your call lights, spending too much time on the phone, and asking too many favors, unless you have an emergent patient. Most everybody is willing to help a nurse who is getting overrun, if it is an occasional thing. A nurse who is always behind needs to pull back and reassess her priorities and how she allots her time. If you need help with that, ask someone that you respect, and who always seems to have things done.
    Do not be dissuaded because your Supervisor seems to be riding you. Perhaps she has seen too many new nurses who just can't get it together, and she doesn't want you to be one of them. On the other hand, she just might be a cranky person, and nothing will please her. Try to watch to see how she does with other folks. If she is cranky with everyone, then it is her personality. If she picks favorites, watch out. My ADN clinical instructor was considered a Hitler, but it was because she insisted that we do things right, to the letter-she didn't let anything slide. It wasn't because she was a mean person. Actually, she was quite tender-hearted, but when it came to students, we toed the line! Her rational was that she was not going to approve of a mediocre way to do anything! It was possible to get an A from her-I did it, in two clinical rotations.
    Last, don't worry about being upset and crying at the end of the evening. You have to let yourself vent, and if you are thinking about your job on your way home and at home, then you really ARE a good nurse. You are using the nursing process, of identifying a problem, proposing and implementing a solution, and evaluating the result of what you've done. It also indicates that you have embraced nursing as a PROFESSION, not a job. Best wishes to you. Things will get better, and one day, new nurses will be looking to you for advice and assistance!
  13. by   KIWIRN
    I agree with "this nurse", in every new job other people need to find out your strengths and weakness as you will find out the ones of the people you are working with. Unfortunately your charge nurse appears to be focusing on your weak points, so that leaves YOU to focus on your strong points!
    The world is not a fair place and your charge nurse is probably trying to get you ready for the "tough" time when she may not be around to help.
    Responsibility kinda sneaks up on you and one day in what seems the far future, you will have a good understanding how someone new feels and learn from your terrible experiance and hopefully make a more pleasent situation for someone else.
    "What goes around comes around"

    stick with it, it can only get better

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New nurse feeling low2