I have been a lurker for so a long time on this website and I think this is an appropriate time to create an account and share my NCLEX story for all those who are doubting and are scared. I live in NY and recently graduated this past December and took my NCLEX for the FIRST time on March 26th, 2018. I will try my hardest to keep this short and sweet, here we go..
After graduating I heard so many opinions as to how I should study. I ONLY bought Uworld and started doing questions right out of the gate. I was not performing well in the beginning AT ALL. I was ranging from 40-55% on my 75-100 Question quizzes and I felt so lost. All my friends who I met throughout my program that graduated before I did told me to only focus on the Rationales of Uworld and not worry so much about your grade so I did just that. I started taking notes and saw that my grades were rising. After going on this website to see If I were the only one who were getting grades like this I came across a 35 page study guide. I printed it out immediately and started studying 1-3 pages each day along with my Uworld questions. Two weeks before my test I took both my assessment tests that UWorld offers and scored "Very High Chance of Passing" not once but TWICE. I started feeling so good and went from 75 questions to around 30 a day and started reviewing the 35 page study guide once or twice over.
The Day of the Test
Because I took the test much later than others whom I graduated with I felt more pressure to pass. All my friends were already celebrating and telling me how hard it was (Dont do this to your friends lol). The night before the test I took the whole day off and felt really good about whats to come. Of course I was nervous. Nervous is OK. I cant begin to tell you how important Affirmations helped me. My test was at 2pm and I ate a huge brunch around 11:30/12pm. I brought little snacks with me but ate them on the car ride to the exam. All my friends along with family pumped me up and told me that I would be done in 75 Questions. I felt confident and knew that this test was MINE FOR THE TAKING.
During the Test
I walk right in there with my head up high, left my cellphone in the car and was pumped to destroy the test. I felt like a UFC fighter walking into the Octagon. I sat down, started the test and realized that I am going up against a MONSTER. I knew it would be hard but after looking at the questions go by, I knew I was getting beat up. I had to get it together if I wanted to finish at 75. Around question 35 I started getting a lot right. To the point where I was screaming in my head "THIS SCREEN BETTER TURN OFF AT 75"
. And there I was, question 75...I clicked next and it didn't turn off. My anxiety skyrocketed and I never prepared for the "what if". I took a deep breath and reminded myself how poor I did in the beginning and that it was a blessing in disguise that it did not turn off. Question 85 comes, 100, 120, 150 and I am still going. While taking frequent breaks I would run into the bathroom and look myself in the mirror and tell myself that I am still in this. If I wasn't, the computer would have turned off. I go back in cool and collected and continue this trek through a road I was unfamiliar with. The NCLEX was asking me things I never saw in school, on uworld, and even in the study guide. I would take deep breaths and remind myself how far I came. Question 180, 200, 210... At this point every time I clicked next I would be begging to god "PLEASE TURN OFF, PLEASE TURN OFF". I would remind myself that some of my friends got this far and still passed. At this point, I started getting super fatigued, lightheaded, and even dizzy. I didn't bring any food, nor were there any vending machines in the building that I could buy a snack. Luckily the VERY kind people who worked there gave me jolly ranchers which helped immensely. Between the sugar, stretching and cold water on my face and positive affirmations in the mirror really put me back in the game. Question 230, 240, 255..................265. I went ALL the way to the end.
After the test.
I left feeling destroyed. I got into my car, the cold storage compartment killed the battery on my phone and I didn't have a clue how to get home. After 2 hrs trying to find my way back (NY Traffic is so much fun). I finally made it home and I crashed. I didn't know how to feel. I felt mentally defeated. The waiting game was worst than the test itself. The constant doubting, crying, and lack of confidence ruined my days leading up to the day where I could pay and find out my unoffical results. ALL of my friends were begging me to do the PVT trick but I refused. I knew it wouldn't relieve any stress because I don't believe it works 100%. After 48hrs and some change later, I go to the spot I pray at with my dad and opened the results.. PASS. Both my dad and I looked like psycho's.. We were crying and laughing and jumping all over the church. People didn't know if they should celebrate or pray for us
Moral of the Story and some pointers.
BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. BELIEVE BELIEVE BELIEVE. If I could do this, you can too. Remind yourself how far you came and how hard you worked for this. I wish I could tell you what I would have done different to prepare for this test because I cant say that Uworld is the sole reason for passing. I truly believe keeping cool and collected, doing affirmations, and believing in god and myself that I could do this was the exact reason for passing.
I would say that prioritization was my strong suite yet I still had a very tough time choosing the correct answers. I would maybe watch some youtube videos or buy a book that could help with that. Don't get me wrong, Uworld and The study guide really
helped, but I believe it's not the content that was hard for me, it was how the questions were worded as well. By keeping super calm, it helped me focus on what they were asking and why to pick the answer I chose. Some tips:
- Take Frequent breaks! My friend told me to take a break at question 45 regardless of how you feel and I cant begin to tell you how much it helped. It took me 3.5hrs for the full 265 and I took around maybe 4-5 breaks.
- Positive affirmations. This is the most important thing to take away from all of this.
- Believe in yourself. You CAN do this.
- Bring Snacks regardless. You never know!
- During SATA's, look at each choice and read it as a true or false question. I read this tip on here and it really helped! (Uworld also helped with SATA's).
- After the test, do not come on this website! It doesn't matter how many others got to the question you did or how they felt. THEY ARE NOT YOU. You WILL be nervous, you will have doubts. That is normal, but you must PRAY and BELIEVE in yourself