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Just a little self-pitying lament on my part (yes, I am aware this doesnt technically have any right to be on a public board but a little support would be so super appreciated...)

I just feel so yucky after today's shift. Im newish but not new and today was one of those days that just tested my belief that I can do this after all. My patients are awesome and dont deserve substandard care and I try very hard to be on top of things all the time. But...sometimes I miss little things. Sometimes things that I couldnt even prevent but still makes me feel icky. And today was just one long day of little things slipping. :(

Blah. Good night.

We all have these days sometimes. Big Hugs

Give yourself a nice warm bath, curl up on your favorite couch with a soothing drink like nice warm tea, and let the day try to slip away knowing tomarrow can be a better day.


Specializes in Med/Surg; L&D.

It's normal to feel this way! Sucky, but normal.

Thanks. I appreciate your words. And that couch/tea combo sounds really nice...

We are all here for you.

I have been a nurse for 32 years. I miss little things, sometimes...big things.

We have all felt that we cannot do this. Nursing is a brutal, challenging profession.

It is getting more challenging every day. You are stretched too thin in order to provide $$ for the corporate masters. It is a no win situation.

So, what happened today?

Forgetting a patients percocet for 45 minutes while I dealt with another nurse, my manager, an NP, the clerk, the phone, and someone bringing my patient for a test all vying for my attention, poor guy had to sit in pain cause it just slipped my mind. Forgot to check my daily labs on one patient somehow, his K was 2.9 didnt realize it till 2pm...O2 monitor going off down the hall, pt desatting in the mid 80s but I was busy with another patient and couldnt hear it...I dont like thinking of the what could have beens. I left with my patients all ok but I could have done it so much better.

Youve been a nurse for 32 years. How do I improve my practice so these things dont happen again?

You did not forget the percocet, you were pulled in too many directions to prioritize that.

Now you know ... pain is your #1 priority ( mine also) , after breathing of course. Every body else can wait. Tell whoever wants something... you will get right on that AFTER you medicate your patient. You will earn respect from sharing that priority.

I have done the same thing with a K+ level, didn't notice it until afternoon, was a nurse for about 15 years at that time. Stuff happens. Did not happen to me again, made it a priority to check ALL patients for ALL labs before 10 AM med pass.

Pulse ox alarm going off down the hall? Happened to me at the ESTEEMED Mayo Clinic on a travel assignment. 25 years in. Someone notified me as I was in another room. We simply can't be in 2 places at the same time or have super- hearing.

So you see.. these were not mistakes. ( Missing the K+ maybe)These were an every day occurrence in the nurse's shift.

I hope my examples will help you to stop being so hard on yourself.

They did, I appreciate it! I guess I still have ways to go but youre right things happen and I guess the only thing to do is to learn from your mistakes and keep on learning right?


Specializes in ICU.

We've all been there, you're not alone in this- it sounds like you did your best, and hey! Everyone was still alive at the end of your shift:)

Take it easy- bath, couch, tea...those are all great ideas.

classicdame, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator.

nurses have high standards and it is hard foro us to be kind to ourselves. Give yourself some slack. Many of us feel this way at some point. Keep fighting!

Prioritize , and make a checklist to use everyday, glance at it often, everything comes easier with time


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