Rough clinical week again need advice

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    So last week I was scolded for not being prepared enough for my pt, this week I prepared for hours and felt confident that I would be spot on when asked any questions. Once again every single thing I said or did was wrong or not good enough. I honestly did my best and was still tore apart and any confidence I had was gone within the first 5min of clinical. At the end of every clinical we have to write a journal about how our week went, I'm half tempted in a nice not nasty way to let this teacher know that she is the 1st teacher I have ever had tell me to hurry up while giving meds. She did it to me today in front of my pt and her daughter and I can't focus when she does this to me. Even when I'm getting my meds out of the accudose machine she stands beside me and says come on hurry up. She has me flustered and to the point that I feel like I have to answer her questions in a split second or fear that she will yell at me and then I blank out and say the first thing that comes to my mind without even thinking It just comes out. I can't stop it this fear just comes over me and I try so hard to think about what she is asking me but I can see her staring at me impatiently waiting for and answer. Should I politely bring this up or am I fighting a losing battle?
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  3. 11 Comments so far...

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    Unfortunately, just get thru it. I've had several horrible or whacko instructors. However, they are instructors for a reason. Once I accepted them and learned what they did not like, I learned a lot from all of them..even if it was something about myself and not so much a nursing thing. The instructors have each others back and sometimes try and weed out the weak. Hang in there..exude confidence.stand by what you say if you know the facts.
    Esme12 likes this.
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    It's fine to talk about your struggles with efficiency and your struggles to keep a clear head while under pressure -- as long as you discuss it in a way that reflects that you view these events as part of a normal learning process. Don't make yourself sound weak and pitiful -- and don't make it sound like you blame the instructor for "making" you feel a certain way and "causing" your mistakes. Own your feelings of nervousness and and your mistakes and discuss them in a constructive manner that will lead you towards improvement and growth and you will be fine. However, you could dig a deeper hole for yourself if you make yourself sound too pitiful or blame the instructor for your mistakes.
    Last edit by llg on Apr 3, '13
    Sun0408 and GrnTea like this.
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    I feel like I can't take it anymore, this week was my 1st time suctioning a trach and as soon as we started she looked at me and said get the suction and I was looking for the right knob to turn on the suction and she went off on me. I guess she wanted me to grab the tubing that was attached to the canister then turn suction on. I froze when she stopped me and she took it as though I didn't even know what suction even was. This is my second week at this hospital and it's set up differently than what I'm used to so I didn't see the knob for the suction right away. She told me today that she has serious concerns that if that had been my pt and they needed emergency suctioning then they would have aspirated because I couldn't identify the suction. When I tried to explain what happened so that I didn't look like a complete idiot she got all upset and took it as if I was arguing about the situation. I honestly was in no way trying to argue she approached me with a concern and we were having a conversation about what happened. What can I do to not freak out in my head when she asks me questions and then I blurt out the wrong things??
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    One other question, does anyone have any ideas or suggestions on how I can politely tell this instructor to quit telling me to hurry up when I'm getting my meds out of the machine and while I'm in my patients room and family is present?
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    Smile calmly and sweetly, and say, "I find it's easier for me to do accurately if I take my time. I'm sure I'll be more efficient with more practice."
    Jill2Shay and morte like this.
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    I have a crazy instructor too!!! Here are your options: learn to live with it for 1 semester, tell her exactly how you feel, or speak with her boss! Good luck.. I am learning to live with it and trying not to take things personally!!
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    Next week we have our last two clinical days with her for the semester although I know this won't solve anything but I might be sick next week and do the make up clinical days with another instructor who I've had in the past and she definitely doesn't treat me like the current instructor...
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    I'm with GrnTea - find a way to tell her what is going on. "I feel that I can be much more accurate if given time to think. I know I will get faster with practice but right now I want to make sure I am being thorough." No decent nurse or instructor wants you to hurry so much that you make an unnecessary error.

    I am sorry you are going through this. I do not recommend being sick next week as it may reflect badly on you. I do recommend finding a way to be assertive (not snotty or aggressive) with this instructor.

    A format we learned in class for assertive communication is..."When you _____, I feel _______ because _____(negative consequence.) "When you tell me to hurry up, I feel nervous (or uncomfortable), because if I hurry I am more likely to make errors." It is not blaming her, but letting her know how you feel when she does a certain thing and what the negative result might be.

    Good luck.
    AnimalRescueNurse likes this.
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    Is it possible this instructor has picked up on your short comings and is trying to help you?? Exposure is a good thing. Knowing how to operate something like second nature is a good thing for when it IS an emergent situation. Is this instructor pushing you to be the best, most prepared student? His/her approach may be too harsh but try to think of it as good practice for when you are on your own..

    As a nurse you are expected to know how to do it all, unfair yes but I will tell you that if a Dr is at the bedside and a procedure needs to be done, he/she will likely not be patient either. Clinicals are a learning tool. Don't come up sick to avoid him/her. Learn from it. If she is too overbearing, say so in a respectful way away from others. Ask him/her ways to improve. Show him/her you are willing to improve but need guidance..


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