Continuing to connect the dots

  1. Hi all!

    I am somewhat of a new nurse and while I feel like I am learning so much on my floor, I feel like I am also missing making the connections between my tasks and the reason why I am doing them. Don't get me wrong I ask a lot of questions and make sure I know I am doing things correctly and the general reason but I guess I am having a hard time always seeing the bigger picture.

    I know it is impossible for me to have the knowledge base of a 20-year veteran nurse anytime soon but it's so frustrating. There is always that moment in report where the oncoming nurse asks "Well, why?" and I say to myself "Crap.... I have no idea. Why didn't I think of that?".

    I recently went to a 2 day education seminar for MedSurg nurses and the things we talked about in person versus the things that are written down in the powerpoint slides, and policies, and textbooks are so different.

    I guess my question is is there some place that I can look to for information that might help me connect the dots such as a nursing journal or other resources that I can utilize? Any tips or tricks would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance.

    -Emily
  2. Visit MedEm29 profile page

    About MedEm29, BSN, RN

    Joined: Nov '14; Posts: 4; Likes: 7
    from MA , US
    Specialty: <1 year(s) of experience

    3 Comments

  3. by   TruvyNurse
    This sounds like a good majority of new nurses out there. I know I felt that way for a long time. Time and experience will be your best teachers. Just keep up a good attitude, give it your best and be willing to learn. Your coworkers understand you're new.
  4. by   Davey Do
    Quote from MedEm29
    I know it is impossible for me to have the knowledge base of a 20-year veteran nurse anytime soon but it's so frustrating.
    And that frustration can be a catalyst to stimulate your endeavor, Emily.

    Just the fact that you are driven is an indication that you want to be a good nurse and that is admirable.

    I would like to echo what TruvyNurse said, yet from a different angle. Learning from experience is an deductive/inductive/repetition/association process. In other words, we learn through generalization, specifics by repeating processes over and over again repeatedly, and then we associate certain known entities with one another.

    This is a process which could take months or years or it might just all come to you in an explosively illuminating moment of revelation.

    My advice is to continue doing what you're doing: Working at it, reaching out for more information, and living your endeavor- Eat, drink, and sleep med surge nursing.

    It will come to you.

    A story I like to tell happen to me when I worked in OR. I had broken into hospital nursing with 2 1/2 years of working in psych as an LPN, but really wanted to get some techy medical experience. I got the position as a scrub nurse and worked at learning the trade. At first I was all thumbs and a supervisor questioned whether this was a right fit for me. I cried and persevered by eating, drinking, and sleeping scrub nursing. Then, it all came together: Three months in and I was a shining star!

    Although I would like to go on and float my own boat, I'll leave it at that, for I want it to serve as an example to you, Emily. Hard work and perseverance will sail you to your port.

    Good luck, and the very best to you!
  5. by   snowflower2016
    I'm a new nurse, too (19 months on the floor). I am a big questioner and ask "why" all the time. I ask my peers first and then check google....if nobody knows the answer or google isn't clear, I ask one of our APNs or residents. My inquisitive nature has caught errors more than once. Trust your gut...if something seems weird...ASK!!! And if you have no idea...ASK!!! A nurse just going through the motions and focusing on tasks isn't a safe nurse IMO.

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