about NURSING SCHOOL? Do your best to elarn all that you can and get a good foundation for knowledge. IT only strengthens your practice. And, you will continue to leearn things each day in your career. You can't learn everything in nursing school.
about NCLEX? Studying hard and working hard throughout school is your best preparation. Don't try to cram for it. Do what you cna do to be a good student in school, and you will be prepared. Take a good review course. Get a good night's sleep the night before and know where your testing location is. Figure in traffic as a possibility for your travel time. And don't think that you flunked if you took more than 75 questions.
about GETTING THAT FIRST JOB? Put forth your best at the interview. You would be surprised at the horrible things applicants do during interviews. If they dont' call you back in 24 hours, relax. they are processing more applications than just yours. I'd give it a week, then call to "check on the status of your application". And apply in more than one place. You might need to relocate to get the job you want.
about KNOWING WHEN TO "MOVE ON"? You will instinctly know this. Whether it is time to move to another unit in same hospital, to another hospital, to change specialties, or to pursue graduate education. And everyone has different times for moving on. Some stay at the same job for thier whole career. Do what is right for you.
about TIME MANAGEMENT? One of the hardest skills.Watch what other nurses do and learn from the positives and negatives that you see. A nurse who is organized usually has a better day. (But not always!)
about CLINICAL PRACTICE? Get in there and learn from everything. Take on the hard patients, they are the best learning situations. Don't be afraid to look up what you don't know and ask alot of questions.
about MEDICATION ADMINISTRATION? Be safe, not sorry. If something doesn't look right, take the time to investigate, call the MD, call pharmacy, etc... I'd rather give a late med, than make a med error.
about IV THERAPY? Look at the IV lines, from top (bag) to bottom (insertion dite) EACH time you walk into the room. Untwist lines that are tangled. Look for infiltration. Make sure there are no bubbles in the lines and that the drip chamber shows drops infusing. Make sure the pump is set right and that the right fluid is hanging. Make this a habit each time you enter a patient's room.
about PATIENT ASSESSMENT? Good assessment skills are a must. Learn from other patient's. Ask to see things on other patients so you can get a visual on it and recognize it the next time you encounter it. If in doubt, ask someone to get a look at your patient.
about CRITICAL THINKING? Takes time to develop the skill. The more experience you have, the better chance that this skill is more refined. But not always. The mroe experience you have, the more ieces to the puzzle you have for patient conditions.
about WORK-LIFE BALANCE? Get a life outside of work! Find friends who are not nurses so you can talk about something other than work and truly relax. Don't work OT each time possible, you will burn out and never want to work again.
about STRESS RELIEF? Spa days are great! Find something that relaxes you and go for it.
about SAFETY? Take the time to do it right. Pretend that each patients is a member of your family and treat them that way. You will never go wrong.
about DOCUMENTATION? New grads usually wnat to over or under chart. Finding that happy medium is hard at first. Read charts of other nurses and find your charting comfort zone.
about KNOWING YOUR LIMITS? If you need help, speak up. Don't try to do something that you dont' know how to do. Only you know your limits.
They are human, too. Be nice to them and good should come around. If it doesn't, kill them with kindness. You will never get written up for that.
about SELF CARE? Encourage it. Or they will never go down that pathway!
about CONFLICT RESOLUTION? It doesn't always end up your way, but try to resolve conflicts in an adult way. You can't win every battle.
about MANAGEMENT? They are human, too, working under constraints put upon them by upper management, that they most likely do not agree with either. But they get to be the bearer of the bad news. Don't kill the message bearer. They need your support.
about "CUSTOMER" SERVICE? Yuck, can't believe that nursing is headed in this direction, like with scripted services, etc... Do the best you can for all patients, and it will fall into place.
about ANCILLARY SUPPORT? They are human, too. Be nice. But hold them to their job expectations. There are many threads on allnurses regarding insubordinate PCTs. It's not always pretty, but we are a team and depend upon each other.
about PATIENTS? They come in all shapes and sizes. It is not up to us to judsge them, but to deliver good quality patient care.
about FAMILIES? They can be a thorn in your side or your best friend. Find out what makes them tick and work together with them.
about THE B.O.N.? They take a long time to process NCLEX applications. Deal with it.
about GETTING INVOLVED IN NURSE FORWARD ORGANIZATIONS? With unity, there is strength. Get involved in ANA, for a check draft of $25 a month, you won't even miss it. Also, get involved in your specialty organization. Professional nurses are working beyond the bedside. Get involved.
about ANYTHING that you would like to have known!!!!