Top 5 Do's Top 5 Dont's

  1. For a brand spankin' new RN:

    What are your personal top 5 DOs?
    What are your personal top 5 DONTs?

    As far as being oriented, learning, and adjusting to real world nursing.

    Please & Thanks! =)
  2. Visit StudentOfHealing profile page

    About StudentOfHealing

    Joined: May '12; Posts: 621; Likes: 587
    Registered Nurse


  3. by   OCRN3
    Always check your tubing and iv sites for dates! Make sure they are not over 4 days pleAse change them!

    Don't be the nurse that walks all over the unit looking for a CNA to put on a bedpan! Do it your self please!

    That's all I can think of for now...
  4. by   CelticGoddess
    Find out where policy is kept and how to access it. For example, our IV tubing is changed every 72 hours for continuous but every 24 hours for INT and PB. (Policy is different at every facility)

    If you are weak on IV's (or anything for that matter), offer to attempt if needed. I got better at IV's because I kept offering to attempt to start them. The more you practice, the better you get.

    Don't walk over your CNA's. Trust me on this one: I worked at a facility with no CNA's and when you have a patient load of 7 to 9 pts, you learn to appreciate all they do for you. OCRN is right about not being the nurse who hunts down the CNA to do something for you that you can do yourself. By all means, ask for assistance but if you aren't busy, help them out.

    Don't take everything to seriously. If you and your preceptor aren't getting along, or if she isn't teaching your anything, by all means talk to your manager. But realize that you will get constructive criticism.

    The biggest do: Take a deep breath, and try to relax as much as possible.
  5. by   smartnurse1982
    I do not have much to add but PLEASE PURCHASE MALPRACTICE INSURANCE!

    That is #1 in my book of Do's.
  6. by   ixchel
    I hope this thread gets big. 😊
  7. by   StudentOfHealing
    Thanks everyone!


    Quote from ixchel, rn
    I hope this thread gets big. 😊
    Hoping the same here!
  8. by   emtb2rn
    Help coworkers as you would have them help you.
    Never stop learning.
    Don't administer a drug without knowing why it was ordered
  9. by   LTCNS
    Don't rush. Even if things are crazy and you feel like you're drowning. More mistakes are made by rushing than by thinking the task through.

    Don't be afraid to ask questions. If you don't know, ask. Asking how to do something/asking for help does equal incompetence. It's being smart and can protect your livelihood.

    Never trust anyone. Even the friendliest, most concerned about your welfare, "I want to be your bestest friend" co-worker can and will turn on you. I learned this the hard way unfortunately.

    Don't burn bridges. Sooner or later burning bridges will come back to bite you.

    Don't run and tell your manager everything a co-worker says and does. Nobody likes a brown noser *Of course if you witness something that is outright abuse, verbally or physically, then you should report it.*

    Do help others every opportunity you get. Nurses are never too good to toilet a patient, change a brief, or clean up a mess.

    Do let your CNAs know you appreciate them and their hard work.

    Do stand up for yourself when the need arises. Nobody else will.

    Do take care of yourself both mentally and physically. It's okay to say no to extra shifts.

    Do be dependable, trustworthy and reliable.
  10. by   SeattleJess
    Quote from LTCNS
    Don't run and tell your manager everything a co-worker says and does. Nobody likes a brown noser *Of course if you witness something that is outright abuse, verbally or physically, then you should report it.*
    Super great tips, LTCNS!

    In addition to "don't be a brown-noser", DO be a praise giver (when praise is due.) I have some awesome coworkers and it makes my day better to be able to compliment them on things they've done well and to thank them sincerely for the help they give me. Cultivate the good!

  11. by   RNsRWe
    DON'T be the person that always 'informs' the NM about someone slacking off, not changing her tubing by the time the clock strikes the next hour, or coming in late. They already know this, and YOU, as the newbie, just labeled yourself a Tattle-Tail.

    DO ask GOOD questions. While they say "there's no such thing as a Stupid Question", I can assure you that if you ask a question because you are too lazy to look in the most obvious place possible for the answer, you WILL be glared at for asking said stupid question Think on it for a little bit; if you cannot find where the answer lies, please DO ask. No one wants you to stay ignorant

    DON'T assume the nurse before you cleaned up everything before she left. DO assume you need to find out from each patient, immediately upon receiving report, if they need pain/nausea meds, or a bathroom trip, or something similar. You might receive on report "oh, Mrs. Smith's been sleeping for two hours, she's totally fine, she can wait" and then when you see Mrs. Smith, she's writhing in pain because she's been awake for the last hour and no one looked in yet to see what's going on.

    DO make sure you've signed off everything, to the best of your knowledge, prior to giving report and finishing shift. No one likes wondering if a med was given (RIGHT after you've just gone home) and no one likes having to make/receive those phone calls to confirm.

    DO listen carefully in report. The nurse who is going off shift would like to do so quickly, without having to repeat herself because someone kept looking for the coffee creamer rather than focusing on what's being said.

    DO smile. Does a world of good for everyone around you. DON'T complain to your patients about how you are new and therefore don't know what's going on--CONFIDENCE is key, for you and for instilling in them. Don't lie, but don't feed anxiety (them AND you!).

    Hang on tight, it's a wild ride.
  12. by   Biffbradford
    Don't cut corners. You'll just get burned in the end. Do it right the first time.
    Don't steal.
    Don't lie.
    Don't talk behind people's backs.
    Leave your personal problems at home, don't bring an attitude to report.
    Do offer help.
    Do ask questions if you don't know.
    Do call the doctor promptly.
  13. by   emtb2rn
    Do follow your instincts. As you gain experience, you will "know" when something is wrong.
  14. by   roser13
    Don't be too hard on yourself the first year. Or even two.

    Do understand that EVERYONE feels overwhelmed, anxious and sometimes incompetent in their first year. It's not just you.