I floated tonight to what is considered almost a "sister" floor, and it's one of my favorite floors in the entire hospital. The staff were very nice, but I had another one of THOSE nights where you don't get a break whatsever (not even the 5 minute eat & run) and an additional 1 hour O.T.
Without going into details, I feel like the amount of care that some of my patients required was almost close to 1:1. And I had some pt's family micromanaging everything, and needing me Q 10 minutes!Other patients felt I hadn't "seen them all night" (was in with that patient at least 6 times, but not for long periods).
I did some venting in private to coworkers to let off steam. It helped a bit. But, I take it very personally when I am giving 110% and all I hear is complaints. It really wears me down!
I have always been a "sensitive" person (which can be a strength at times, mind you). But, I can't help but take this unfair staffing personally! I mean, I ran my as* off tonight! I gave good, professional care. You would have been glad to "follow" behind my group. I knew basically what was going on, and I addressed all the important concerns as best I could. But it was hectic! I gave 7 prns to one patient alone. I kept getting multiple messages from CNAs and unit secretaries that patient in room XYZ called 3 times asking for "PDQ." I was running the whole &^*@$#! night.
After finishing my 1 hour OT to wrap up the charting I never got to do (and coasting on fumes from my last meal 10 hours prior), I saw another RN finsihing up her charting. I guess I was not alone.
She said something about how "this unit needs its matrix changed." Well, gosh darn, I haven't been to a floor yet that had a decent matrix!
I feel, bottom line, that I gave GOOD care tonight. But I feel angry that I had to sacrifice my breaks and stay OT to do it. I am sick of seeing this in nursing!!!!!!! I have no idea how some of our veteran RNs can put up with it. I know some of you even have worse staffing than I do.... but the fact is that patients complained that I wasn't "quick enough" and the call lights were ablazing everytime I turned around! I gave 110% and I feel like DIRT!!!!!!!!! Days like this I feel like big huge doormat!
I know I am just taking it personal, but I would love to hear how anyone else deals with these feelings. I wish my patients had one clue about how HARD I worked for their safety and how MUCH I take their concerns to heart! I would LOVE to have something positive to show for all that hard work!!!
Thanks for listening. Tomorrow is another day.
Feb 23, '03
1) an assertiveness training course, and
2) learning to set and maintain limits
Last edit by sjoe on Feb 23, '03
Feb 25, '03
Yes, thank you all who responded. As luck would have it, I was back on my home floor the next night, had a great group and a good night (still some OT, but oh well). I'm currently in college for a career change, since I am feeling burned out with nursing and feel I need a break. But, I still have bills to pay until I'm done with my new degree/training and land a new job. So, I need to somehow cope while still working as a staff RN.
I could definately use some more assertiveness training! Thanks for the advice on that one. (I might bring that up to our union as an idea for a class & some CEUs). It would help if my hospital quit with the &*^$#@ Press Ganeys (customer service polls) and all that B.S. that goes with it. I give absolutely 110%, so I DO take it very personal when I am set up to fail. And while an assertiveness training class might help me personally to deal with these types of interactions, I still think that working in the current hospital environment will make patient complaints a recurring theme for nurses everywhere.
It is so frustrating as you well know, to be taught how to delegate in nursing school, but in reality, you can't find anyone to delegate to! Everyone is too busy! And we are always "short" of staff, supplies and time. So, who does it fall to but me, the RN? I am the jack of all trades, and it does get old shouldering the burden.
Someday maybe the hospitals will wise up and realize that we nurses know what we are talking about. We need more staff and more resources, to do our job properly. Many of us are getting crispy in these working conditions!
Thanks for the advice & feedback! :roll
I appreciate the suggestions.
PS- I will plan on checking out some of those book titles. I am a book-aholic! Amazon
.com knows me on a first name basis! LOL! The "Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway" I already have, and is one of the inspirations for me pursuing a new career.
Last edit by Genista on Feb 25, '03