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How do you feel at the end of your shift?

Specializes in Cardiovascular.

]I am in my 1st year on a telemetry unit. Frequently, I go home feeling like I've failed. In the back of my mind, I know that good things have happened over the course of the day. But the mistakes and shortcomings seems to overtake my memory of the day.

I start off in a good mood; I do love nursing. But as it progresses I feel like nobody is helping me (techs, charge nurse) and I become a chicken with its head cut off. I try to do everything myself, and I end up feeling like shortcuts were taken, key symptoms missed, and patients/families disappointed.

One of my problems, I think, is that in the beginning of the 12 hr shift, I am relaxed and take extra time to talk to my patients. I can almost always make a connection, and I love that! But later on in the day, as things start piling up, I really think they feel shortchanged and neglected since I cannot provide minute-to-minute attention. They seem to become more needy.. and dont seem to understand that I have 3 other patients.

The end result? I leave furious & frustrated with patients and family members, as well as my fellow employees. I feel they are also angry with me. My 12 hrs of work seems somehow nullified because it's all colored by those last few hours.

Can anyone relate to these feelings??

Hi,I'm a new nurse going into my 6 week of orientation...I'm orienting on a telemetry floor as well...I often go into work and think to myself "ok so what will I screw up again,what will I forget,what will I miss,which dots I wont be able to connect in my head today?? Really,it is that bad..I come in half and hour or hour before my shift just to read up on my patients info but still miss this or that..like today I missed to scan a order to the pharmacy cause it was a pre CABG orders sheet and it look different than just regular doctors orders. But today also something hit me,as I was sitting in the corner reading patient chart (we had a slower day today) I came to conlusion that one day everything will start fall into place,that one day we will be an expert like the nurses we look up to,one day we wont feel dumb,like failure and we will feel we did something good today,I know it will take a long time for us to develop that confidence and skills though.

franciscangypsy

Specializes in ICU, MedSurg, Medical Telemetry.

I am also a new nurse on a tele floor and, Cabbagehead, you sound like me! I get enough help, but sometimes I feel needy, like I can't think on my own, and like I am always running behind by the end of the shift. I feel like I leave stuff behind for the nurse coming on and like I don't know enough about my people -- and like I give a crappy report b/c I'm exhausted by the time dayshift arrives.

I hope this feeling passes, because sometimes I feel like a horrible nurse who makes every night harder than it has to be. Who gets behind even when she has a fairly good team.

I guess practice make perfect, right? And most dayshift nurses are pretty good about being nice when I give them report and I don't get as much done as I wanted to or didn't get as much research done as I wanted.

Thankfully I don't have many nurses coming on like the float nurse who stared at me and "Are you serious?" in an incredulous tone when I said that I hadn't gotten an admission finished for her although I had checked her meds off in the computer. Then she flipped through the chart to find when the pt came in when I explained that the pt had just arrived and had taken time to settle down since she had been an Alzheimer's pt and she had come during med pass. Then the float nurse proceeded to lecture me on how if the admit came at 0600 and not at 0630 and so I really should have had the admission done for her. Well, I'm sorry, this wasn't my only pt and I was doing the aide's work too for the admit (wght, hght, vitals, pottying the pt) since the aides were in report and I also still had to finish passing meds to my other four patients at that point. I didn't have TIME.

To be nice, I stayed till after 0800 to do her admit (this is a 7-7 shift). I didn't get to bed until almost 1000 (I live almost 45 min from work) and I had to work the next night. I wasn't happy. Esp. since the nurse didn't even acknowledge me when I informed her that I got the admit done even though I could have technically gone home (report was done). So nurses like that make me feel horrible at the end of my shift too. I NEVER assume the other nurse was just lazy and didn't do the job. I always figure that they were just too busy to get the job done. And I could have been a jerk that shift too, when I came in to one discharge and two admits. :madface:

Wow, that was a side rant. Oops. :uhoh21:

Usually, I'm okay by the end of shift. Just exhausted and wishing I could be a little faster/better/more knowledgeable.

LoveANurse09

Specializes in Cardiac.

Ugh,sounds like out float nurses!! I am coming up on a year on a cardiac/tele unit too and it does get better! Once your organization is done you wull get quicker with things.The one thing is sometimes you don't have time to talk and chitchat with pts as they'd like too. They can be hard but in reality you need to get your work done and chitchatting is not a priority,later on they think why isnt she in here like she was before? They think well she had time to talk before,she must just be ignoring me now.

I understand your frustration though, our aids dont do what their supposeed to do either,and it makes it 10x harder for us! Just know that in time it'll all click and when it does your will feel much more confidence.

Sometimes I feel good and sometimes not. Today I felt like an idiot because I forgot to document that I put an NG in and had to phone the ward to tell them. I'm only on week 2 and most of my time has been on training days so that was only my third real day on the ward.

Sometimes, I just think "well I'm at home and that is work, it is a job at the end of the day". I am not perfect but I will just do my best.

It's a shame nurse education is so wishy washy that we are left floundering. I qualified without knowing how to manage a tracheostomy but on my ward they are common. I didn't know the first thing about them. Once again, unprepared for real life. I did an accelerated programme so I had to just cram knowledge in as fast as I could.

As a student, I met plenty of nurses who pull that "incredulous" act when they're trying to manipulate you. I would just ignore them, there is nothing wrong with you but them. They know fine well sometimes you can't just miraculously produce an admission/nursing assessment with an Alzheimer's patient clambering everywhere.

One of the biggest problems I have found is dealing with aides. They refuse to help me out and want me to flounder. I ask for assistance and they refuse. I ask them to collect a tiny item from upstairs so I can proceed and take the dressings down for the Doctor. They act like I am asking for the Earth and one snarled at me for that.

I don't think I will bother asking them again because they will start talking about me... One has a real chip on her shoulder.

AggieNurse99, BSN

Specializes in Telemetry, Med/Surg, Infusion, Vascular Access.

Myself, I'm coming up on my 2nd year on a tele floor. There were many days I went home crying my first few months off precepting. Eventually most of it clicked. A few words of wisdom to you all:

-everyone has a bad day where they end up charting for 1 to 1 1/2 hours after their shift every now and again; its gonna happen less and less as you get more organized, but 3 years from now, it'll happen again one day, but it won't be as big a deal to you.

- most people [coworkers] don't really care about you; they only focus on what matters to them/their shift. The next RN who you hand an admit off to will probably be thinking "damn, more work for me;" or "why does she always do this to me." The techs who "want you to fail" most likely could care less but are just unhelpful in general, lazy, or too focused on their task at hand (vitals/trays/diaper rounds) [she's interrupting me again!] A lot is just a matter of perception.

-It is just a job. Remind yourself you do have a life outside of work! Go out with your friends, take the kids to the park, take your man/woman on a date, go shopping with your paycheck, etc. I personally use my 20-30 minute commute home to decompress and turn off the nurse button.

Good luck!

Interesting points about perception AggieNurse99.

I think you should just give up after the evening meal. Get the meds done, get your break, tie things up, get your documentation done and get ready for the oncoming shift. All sorts will happen to tie you up now - discharges, transport will arrive, etc. If you happen to have time to do some extra bits, then you can do so and just add a note to your documentation. If they start and say that you didn't do something then just remind them that healthcare is a 24-hour service and that you prioritised the important tasks.

And then GO HOME - enjoy your night, and let them get on with the job they are paid for!!

LVN2010M

Specializes in Case Management, Psychiatric Nursing.

I have the same feeling it is so overwhelming never have i felt like this. Ive been on orientation for 3.5 weeks and everyday i feel as if i forgot something or failed to finish something or im in someones way... Its exhausting i cant sleep at night because i come home thinking about my day and what i did and didnt do.. on my days off i try to enjoy but as soon as work starts i flip out because im scared that i will go back to chaos.....

i hope this passes..

i love nursing.. but never new it would start off like this.

wow

hunnybaby24

Specializes in Tele, Cardiac Post Op, ER.

MAN! I had the same feeling today, and for the past three days! I am taking on 3 patients on a tele floor and I feel so overwhelmed organizing. I was doing pretty well, with two patients, but once I added on a third, I feel like I'm faltering, and it isn't helping that our nurse educator smirks after I ask her a question to make me feel stupid. She also makes me feel like she's seen it all and nothing can surpass her experience.

We do 8 hour shifts on our training, which I think is not that fun going to work mon-friday. I love talking to my patients but feel like when they start talking, I have to go since I have to go take care of my other patients.

ugh! I just had to get that out.

seaspray700777

Specializes in acute.

Hi, there where do you work? I need a job, and I have been written up because I dont take breaks go figure! I have been a cna and there are a few good ones, but alot are lazy. Just know there are some of us out there that work or tails off for you. Due the respect you deserve.

Sometimes I feel good and sometimes not. Today I felt like an idiot because I forgot to document that I put an NG in and had to phone the ward to tell them. I'm only on week 2 and most of my time has been on training days so that was only my third real day on the ward.

Sometimes, I just think "well I'm at home and that is work, it is a job at the end of the day". I am not perfect but I will just do my best.

It's a shame nurse education is so wishy washy that we are left floundering. I qualified without knowing how to manage a tracheostomy but on my ward they are common. I didn't know the first thing about them. Once again, unprepared for real life. I did an accelerated programme so I had to just cram knowledge in as fast as I could.

As a student, I met plenty of nurses who pull that "incredulous" act when they're trying to manipulate you. I would just ignore them, there is nothing wrong with you but them. They know fine well sometimes you can't just miraculously produce an admission/nursing assessment with an Alzheimer's patient clambering everywhere.

One of the biggest problems I have found is dealing with aides. They refuse to help me out and want me to flounder. I ask for assistance and they refuse. I ask them to collect a tiny item from upstairs so I can proceed and take the dressings down for the Doctor. They act like I am asking for the Earth and one snarled at me for that.

I don't think I will bother asking them again because they will start talking about me... One has a real chip on her shoulder.

FriendlyGhostRN

Specializes in Emergency.

I've been off orientation for 1.5 weeks now, and many of the feelings described above are true to me as well. I work in the ED, our orientation is 6 months long (I always felt so "safe" and protected while working with preceptors...they double-checked my work and explained things very detailed for me). Now that I am on my own, I find myself most often running around like a chicken with it's head cut off. When I come in at 1500, that's our busiest time of day, and so usually I take over for a group of 4 patients with assessments not done, meds not given, etc (every once and a while you get lucky and don't have that happen!!), so I end up playing catch-up for the first 2-3 hours with patients the nurse prior to me handed off. Then, while playing catch-up, I get more patients added..I'm always feeling overwhelmed. Not always, but usually by 2300 I am getting caught up well and less patients are coming in to the ED (I look forward to 2300-0300!). I'd say there are days I go home feeling like I succeeded, pat myself on the back and am amazed how I survived the shift, but also days I go home feeling inadequate, scared, worried, and dreading my next shift (I love my job and my co-workers, but bad days always make me go home worried to come back). I think these are normal feelings for all of us new grads, I'm hoping one day I can get a better grip on my time management! Glad to have this to vent! :) Good luck to all other new grads out there! We CAN do this.

november17, ASN, RN

Specializes in Ortho, Case Management, blabla.

How do you feel at the end of your shift?

Ready to get the heck out, and don't call me at home cuz I won't answer the phone!!

Ace587RN, RN

Specializes in ED.

I feel terrible after my shift. 4 weeks into my 6 week orientation on the Med Surg floor. Im expectd to be juggling 8 patients by 6 weeks, but im only juggling 4 and barely making it.

I feel terrible after my shift. 4 weeks into my 6 week orientation on the Med Surg floor. Im expectd to be juggling 8 patients by 6 weeks, but im only juggling 4 and barely making it.

EXACTLY how I feel. I'm on my 4th week also. I feel stressed out all the time but as soon as I'm done reporting and charting and it's time to clock out... then that is when i felt relieved. BUT the thought of having to go back to work the next day was dreadful :crying2:

cebuana_nurse

Specializes in OB, Peds, Med Surg and Geriatric Nsg.

EXACTLY how I feel. I'm on my 4th week also. I feel stressed out all the time but as soon as I'm done reporting and charting and it's time to clock out... then that is when i felt relieved. BUT the thought of having to go back to work the next day was dreadful :crying2:

I know what you feel. Everytime my phone alarms saying that I have work, I already feel tired. Worked 3 straight days doing 2nd shift and I feel like I've been ran over by a truck. Wish there is a job out there where you make the same as a nurse and all you have to do is sleep all day. LOL:lol2:

Ace587RN, RN

Specializes in ED.

I know what you feel. Everytime my phone alarms saying that I have work, I already feel tired. Worked 3 straight days doing 2nd shift and I feel like I've been ran over by a truck. Wish there is a job out there where you make the same as a nurse and all you have to do is sleep all day. LOL:lol2:

if u have a lot of experience in IVs and willing to train, PICC line is the way to go :yeah:

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