I just finished my third day of clinicals (first rotation) & negative emotions just hit me like a wave today. I've been busting my butt this first semester of classes & am sitting at a 92% in the class. That's all fine & great but I feel like I've lost the rest of my life. I no longer spend time with family, friends, exercising, relaxation, etc. I always feel like there's more studying I need to do! How do I accomplish feeling some balance in my life?!
On another note, I'm just generally not feeling confident in clinicals. I know my skills but I for some reason freeze up even on SIMPLE things! I know deep down this isn't an issue of my competency, it's my ability to feel confident & comfortable in what I'm doing.
Please help with some words of encouragement!
Jul 12, '11
Its normal to have those feelings! I don't start until Fall semester but have been doubting myself, asking "can I really do this?" Really I can't believe I've been doubting my abilities to be able to do something I have worked so hard at. I think you are having normal feelings, and I'm sure it will get better! Throughout everyone I have talked to, nurses on this board and nurses I personally know, they say your first semester is the hardest because its a whole new way of thinking. You will lose your social life in the first semester but you might be able to get it back later.
I can remember losing any sense of social life during A&P even, it was like telling my family goodbye for a good 6 months. I think your feelings are normal and if you stick with it your confidence will grow. I would suggest talking to a few students in your program that are a year ahead of you. Our school likes to pair the junior students up to the senior students as sort of a mentoring relationship. Maybe your school has one. I'm sure you are not the only one who has had these feelings.
As for keeping balance in your life, I suggest blocking some time out for yourself. I'm a type A personality so I find I will have to schedule some "me" time in between studying, classes and clinicals.
Keep your head up! You are doing great!
Jul 12, '11
I don't know hardly anyone in my class who is balancing there life very evenly. You might have a little time for other things but i know i don't have time for anything except school. It's a tough field to go into and everyone is told going into it that you pretty much have to live and breathe nursing if you want to pass! You will have to make sacrafices to get through it but it will be worth it once your done! Good luck!
Jul 12, '11
Oh and another thing, that is awesome you have an A in there! Not easily done by no means..
Jul 12, '11
That's basically nursing school. You wake up eat, go to class/clinical/lab, come home, study, eat, sleep, rinse and repeat. As far as clinical goes. It usually takes a few weeks before you feel like you actually know what the **** you are doing. I was a complete mess the first couple weeks and didn't have a clue what the hell I was doing. Then I really can't explain it, but I had my "ah ha!" moment and just started doing all kinds of stuff. Confidence comes through experience.
Jul 12, '11
Yeah unfortunately when everyone was telling you that you would have NO social life ... They were right, YOU WANT!!!
I'm currently in my 2nd semester of nursing school and from the time I started in January all I've done is become absorbed in my school work. Like you said I always feel like there is something else I should/could be doing. Don't get me wrong I try to squeeze in some free time here and there (which is a good thing to do sometimes by the way). I've lost many friendships because they just "didn't understand" why I couldn't party and do the college things anymore. I don't spend nearly as much time with my family as I used too. It's gotten to the point where when I come home they don't even expect to see me. I stay in the office the whole time studying.
BUT you have to remember that these 2 years of torture will fly by and it's only temporary! Nursing is my dream, so I don't look at it as a negative thing anymore just something that I have to do to reach my goals. If you try to think about it this way then it might make you feel a little better about your decision. Anything that's worth having requires work! As far as clinicals, don't sweat it. I still feel dumb sometimes at clinicals, but I try to pay close attention to my clinical instructors and anytime there is a chance for me to complete a procedure I take that chance. Listen and learn as much as you can. Don't be afraid to ask questions either.
Jul 13, '11
That sounds about normal to me. I just finished my prereque's and am starting nursing school in a month. I haven't had a social life in 2 years. I also already feel like everyone else knows something I don't or will have more confidence than me. We have a list a preparations to complete before we start school and some people talk about them like they have it all together. In the back of my mind all I can think is "what"???????
Don't worry. I think everyone feels that way or close to that way. School will be over before you know it and you will gain your confidence and get your social like back. You will also have the life you've been dreaming abut!!!!
Hang n there!
Jul 13, '11
I hate to bring bad news but...
NURSING SCHOOL = NO LIFE!
It's a sacrifice you have to make for a rewarding career.
I am starting my second semester August 16th and I'm already reading and taking notes for next semester!
CHIN UP, keep your eye on the prize!!!!
Jul 13, '11
On a side note though... I take EVERY SATURDAY for myself, no school, nothing! On exam weekends I study for one hour only on Saturdays!
Jul 14, '11
At orientation we were warned by Instructors and Students alike that our lives would
be consumed my Nursing School. They also suggested that we take a day a week for
ourselves/family/friends. I am planning on Sundays - on that day, unless there is an
exam the next day, I am planning on not studying - I do plan to spend time with my family,
cook a few meals for the week, and rest.
That said, I hope I can stick to it.
The clinical skills, and your comfort level will come with time soon you will be able to do this
stuff with your eyes closed. Congrats on the 92% that shows your dedication.
Keep your chin up, eye on the prize, and you'll be done before you know it !
Jul 14, '11
Don't worry too much about your confidence, this will grow with time. Most of the time we focus on the negative feedback we get but make sure and take note of all those ''good job!'' and ''well done'' and ''you did great'' and even ''thanks''....cos if they are thanking you it means you did something right- that the patients and RN's and teachers and peers give you.
With balancing your life......all you can do is your best....dont put too much pressure on yourself. Your loved ones should understand!! Maybe try to organise your work/ study a little better if you are feeling like theres always more to study. Either each week/ each evening....make a list of all the things relating to school that you have to do...include study and essays. Write down what you want to study and do it. Write down whether you want to plan the essay,research (if so..what do u want to research) or type up the essay ( how much do u want to type). Make it realistic......no point writing down that you need to type up two essays and study 4 chapters.....its not gona happen!
Best of luck!!
Jul 15, '11
Just remember.... it's temporary and the end result is a beacon of light at the end of this dark tunnel
It will be well worth it for you and your family in the end!!
Jul 20, '11
I lost all contact with everybody in nursing school and lost a relationship with an amaaazing man because of nursing school. I was just too busy and had to be completely selfish to get through school and he didn't understand it. But hey, it's part of it. I never found a balance really. I made time to go to the gym and I used that as my social hour during the day, but there were times where I was so busy I had to skip the gym for the whole week to get papers done and study for tests. I never had a social life during my ASN. But it was 2 years. I would try to set up a date night with my ex once a week and we'd go to dinner and spend some time together (and then I'd come home and study usually). That was my only free night during the week, but I kept that a priority, along with working out since it relieved all the stress!
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