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TaniqueRN 2,310 Views

Joined: Jul 24, '11; Posts: 26 (12% Liked) ; Likes: 12

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  • Dec 11 '12

    Your preceptor is a charge nurse with TWO orientees???? I feel for you (been there, done that), but--and please don't take this the wrong way--you need to give your preceptor a great big hug and thank her for trying!

    Also, please don't worry so much about the skills. Work on your time management and critical thinking. When you are able to get some downtime, offer to other nurses to do IVs and the like. The skills will come in time.

    One of the biggest problems I see with people in charting is that they try to chart on everyone all at once and manage their time that way. Although they might think they have an hour to chart, there is always something that comes up to delay it even more, and they almost always end up staying late. Try it a different way. Chart on one patient when you have 10 minutes. Then another when you have 10 minutes. When I switched to that method, I rarely have to stay late to chart.

    You said your 12 meds are late. I know the morning is filled with to-do lists before you even start--assess, pass meds on the big morning round, treat blood sugars, delegate or help do morning care--but have you found ways to cluster as much as possible? When you get report and see your patient, assess pain and take a look at VS and pull any PRNs with the am meds so you don't have to pull/give twice. If meds are an hour apart, see if you can give them at one time safely. Clustering is the only way to get everything done.

    The grass is not always greener in the first year. If you go to a different place now on the same type of unit, you'll face the same problems, plus you'll have to learn unit-specific processes all over again. I firmly believe that if you don't have the nursing part down, going somewhere else brings more problems than it solves.

    Staffing is an issue nearly everywhere. Never believe the ratios given during interviews. They are rarely completely true. I was told 5:1, but I usually start out at 6:1 because there is a plan to discharge someone. Then, with a second discharge during my shift, I will get two admissions. That's eight patients in a 12-hour shift, with the discharges and admissions taking longer than just having the same six patients during a shift.

    I know you may not like this suggestion, but I found it helped me. I did nights for more than a year and now I rotate. I'm thankful to have worked nights because I was able to work on time management. There are the crazy nights where time management is essential, but I think nights is a great starting place for new grads. Other, more experienced nurses may have more time to assist and teach you. I learned everything from my night charge in that first year. I did a ton of IVs on nights, placed NGs and Foleys on night admissions, did total care on trach vents (my favorite type of patients, actually). Comaraderie is good on nights. One of my favorite shifts (no, really!) was a low census night, and there were only 2 RNs and 1 CNA who also helped out on a sister unit. The only way we got everything done was to work together.

    Good luck to you.

  • Dec 11 '12

    I could have written your post, OP; the only major differences being that all my kids are grown (although I do have an unemployed Iraq War vet living on my sofa right now) and I have bipolar disorder. I'm the sole support for four people and wonder just how much longer I'm going to be able to take the constant stress. I love my job, but there is SO much responsibility and sometimes I am just too unstable to handle it well.

    I'm currently in a depressive episode, but ironically I do better at work when I'm like this than I do when I'm manic, despite all the extra energy and over-optimism. At least I'm quiet, and stay in my office most of the time where I actually get some work done. Besides, I'm pushing 55 and know that my options for other nursing jobs with an ADN are very limited, and I'm neither willing nor able to tackle organic chemistry and statistics at this time of my life. So I stick with my 50-hour weeks and thank God I'm employed, and that I have the greatest boss on the planet who knows when I'm overwhelmed and need a mental-health day.

  • Dec 11 '12

    Sending you a big hug. Try really hard to give 100%. If you can look in the mirror at the end of the shift and say that you gave it your all, then give yourself a pat on the back. If things take longer-- oh well. You're doing your best to stay safe, and that's the most important thing. Don't stop asking questions for fear if what others might think or if somebody else is busy. Try to give this job a full year. This will open the door to other options, perhaps less stressful options.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Thank you for this message. I am a current LVN for a year now with very little experience but I still can't get a full time...decent job. I work at an intermediate care facility a lvn on weekends only. I'm happy I still have a job but at the same time I really hope to get a "real" job at hospital or rehab center..just somewhere better where i can gain more experience and exposure. i'm going to start volunteering in a month or so..not as a lvn intern or anything since that doesn't even exist..but i will be networking and hopefully get my name out there. ill keep this post in mind! if youhave any more advices please share! good luck in school!

  • Sep 14 '12

    Congrats!! are u an LPN or RN??

  • Sep 14 '12

    wow after 2yrs? i am very happy for you.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Wow sis...great for you and it makes me feel encouraged too because I'm too going into 2 years of looking. I'm now applying everywhere, small hospitals in Texas, NM, ND, I look for places no one wants to go, rural hospitals that I can find. I've applied 300 times in California but this is the worst place so I gave up in Cal. So now that I decided to relocate I have that many more places to apply. I'm trying to apply to 10 a day but it's very hard and time consuming. I heard that some people apply to 2000 in order to land their fist job. Don't worry you'll get back in the saddle.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Quote from TaniqueRN
    Tomorrow starts my first day of Nursing Orientation (after) waiting two years for this day. I do not even know where to start in reviewing. If anyone has any helpful advice or has experienced what I will be experiencing, please let me know what to expect or how I should start off in reviewing.
    First off, congratulations.

    Know that they hired you for YOU, not what you know. It's your personality and your 'story' that they hired. They know darn well that even a fresh newbie needs help and that a stale newbie needs even more.

    Be frank and honest with your preceptor and the others about what you know and what you don't. Be a hard worker and always quick to help out, answer call lights, empty commodes. Be a few minutes early every day (just so you won't be even 2 seconds late) and be excellent at what you do. Clean up after yourself, keep your lines and wires untangled, and keep your patients puffed and buffed. Don't join in the inevitable complaining.

    Review: Do just that... review, not preview. After each shift or each rotation, do case studies of your patients, their conditions, and their treatments. It will stick so much more easily when it's tied to a real person.

    Ask questions and take suggestions and criticisms.

    Engage with the doctors. You need to build credibility with them, too, and they are a wealth of information.

    Smile a lot and let the I-finally-got-a-job gratitude show on your face and in your demeanor.

  • Sep 14 '12

    I am so happy for you. I love these kids of posts.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Congrats, your story is very inspiring and demonstrate that there is hope for those of us that has past the dreaded one year mark and heading for two years without that first RN job. Please keep us updated on your progress and how you are adjusting.

  • Sep 14 '12

    PM'd you if you care to reply. Congrats!

  • Sep 14 '12
  • Sep 14 '12

    Congratulations on your new position. For all of the aggravation, disappointments, and frustration you have encountered, you have been rewarded with the opportunity to do what you have been trained for. This inspires hope in the rest of us who are waiting to be given an opportunity to enter the work force once again.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Awesome and congrats!!
    As far as the review of forgotten material,
    I wouldn't stress it. When I got back into
    nursing after not working at the bedside for a while,
    I found that orientation was good enough and
    coworkers were helpful.

    Don't be hesitate to let them know where you
    stand. Hoping you have a good team working coworkers.
    It will all come back...Kind of like learning how to ride a bike
    you'll get a hang of it quick.

  • Sep 14 '12

    Woohoo!!! I'm really happy for you! Congratulations!