How quickly does your shift go by?


How quickly does your shift go by? In general, does it drag, or do you look at the clock and wonder, "Where the hell did the time go?!" What is your specialty?

Just curious to see how peoples' opinions differ...


1,459 Posts

It depends on the day... new admits? and other stuff like that.

Music in My Heart

2 Articles; 4,102 Posts

Specializes in being a Credible Source. Has 13 years experience.

Usually it's "wow, I've only an hour 'til report..."

That's something that I love about nursing... the days fly by.


476 Posts

Specializes in Peds Critical Care, Dialysis, General.

Depends on the day, what's going on in the unit and how the computers are behaving. Somedays, it goes so quickly and others you're wondering "Is it still 0900, are the batteries dead in that clock...I've been here forever!" Work in Peds ICU.

RNperdiem, RN

4,580 Posts

Has 14 years experience.

It really varies.

Last week I had one patient in the burn center. He was sedated, ventilated, the dressing had been done on night shift, and his vital signs were stable. I did nothing beyond the routine care of turning, taking vitals, assessments, charting, etc. He didn't even have visitors and the doctors orders were minimal. That was a very slow day.

The week before I had 2 patients in another ICU. One was going into alcohol withdrawl (in addition to his injuries that brought him to ICU) and the other patient was having cardiac issues. Both of them had multiple family members in to visit, there were many doctors orders, travel off the unit and more to do than I think I could fit into one day. That shift went by so quickly.


149 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac, Hospice, Float pool, Med/Peds.

I work 12 hour nights and usually go by pretty quick. Most patients don't sleep like the world thinks. I spend a lot of quality time teaching and talking with patients and their families... Love nursing.

Elvish, BSN, DNP, RN, NP

17 Articles; 5,259 Posts

Specializes in Community, OB, Nursery.

My nights generally go by pretty quickly between 1900-0100, then from 01-05, it drags, then after that the morning flurry of activity makes the last little bit fly by. Of course it does depend on the night, and the patients. Some shifts are faster than others.

What really kills me, though, is when we turn the clocks back an hour. Oh my goodness, that is one LONG night...

ETA - mother-baby/nursery/antepartum nurse here.


832 Posts

Really depends on the day, acuity of the patients, what gang of doctors we have that particular month and whether of not my coworkers are in a good mood or griping!!! I work in MICU

Specializes in LTC. Has 6 years experience.

Day shift go by fast for me, evening shift can be a drag sometimes.

Ruby Vee, BSN

67 Articles; 14,022 Posts

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

depends on the day. some days fly by and others drag. it depends on the patient or patients i have, whether or not i'm precepting, who i'm working with and how much sleep i got before my shift.

i work in sicu.

jschut, BSN, RN

2,743 Posts

Has 20 years experience.

It depends on how busy I am. If I have an emergency or an admit.. time flies.... otherwise, between 2-3a is usually pretty quiet and slow, and I try to get charting and other things completed by that time.

I work in the Infirmary of a prison.


998 Posts

Specializes in General adult inpatient psychiatry.

I work in psych, 7p-7a. From 7p-12 midnight, it's usually pretty busy between groups, meds, snack, helping patients with getting ADL supplies, doing laundry but once midnight hits, it's hit or miss, waiting for admissions. The rest of the shift is spent doing chart checks, catching up on documentation and preparing report for the morning. If we've got a lot of admissions and they're not spaced out, I find myself barely looking at the clock. If they're spaced out and we're well staffed, I'll look up at the clock occasionally. If our unit is full, I look at the clock sometimes, waiting for someone to go ape$hit.