New nurse seeking advice

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    I am a new nurse and hear that the first year as a nurse is difficult. Any advice on transitioning from school to practice? I graduated in December, 2011 and worked at a rehabilitation hosptal for about three months. I did not find the job to be a good fit for me and resigned. When I do find a new job, I want to be sure to be succeessful instead of being overwhelmed and less effective. Does anyone have suggestions on tools to being successful and gaining clinical competency? Any strategies and insights in becoming successful as a new nurse? Thanks!
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    The first year as a new nurse is really difficult. My suggestions would be:

    Try to stay organized at work (prioritize in the order of importance, pain meds for patient A is more important to get before filling patient B's water jug)
    Keeping pt's safe is always your first priority, if your patients are safe everything else will get done at some point
    Don't be too hard on yourself, you will make mistakes or make a doctor or your manager mad at some point in time but it's ok, you are learning
    Slow down, you can't do everything at once, you are not going to know every bit of information all the time
    Take a good report from your previous nurse, taking good notes and writing down key information will keep you up to speed, make sure your notes are organized, use a highlighter to help out
    Remember, you are only one person, you can only do one thing at a time

    Good luck! You will survive your first year, it just takes some time

    Oh yeah, and make friends w/ your nursing assistants, they can make or break your day, they will be your right hand and help them whenever you can because they will return the favor x 10!!!
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    Thanks cn2007rn! Those are very good points. -renee924


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