1. i love learning. <---good you wont ever stop
2. research everything. good...knowledge is key, but sometimes youwont have time to look up everything and you will just have to trust yourself and rely on your knowledge base.
3. want to know "why" about everything.<---that will make you a better nurse...never do anything just bc you were ordered to...know why you are doing it
4. ask so many questions related to the above that i drive most people crazy.<----yep me too, but oh well, if it helps me take better care of my pts..like i said..oh well
5. want to be good at what i do. <---i think we all do...you will be but it takes time. the most frustrating thing to me at first was that, while i was smart, i was just inexperienced...nothing i could do but keep on truckin through...it was tough bc im a book/school type person...if im not good at something i just study more....you can read all the books you want as a new grad but sometimes you just gotta get out there, make mistakes and learn. dont be too hard on yourself.
6. would like to be an expert in my chosen specialty.<---that too, will come in time. the more i learn, the more i realize i don't know.
7. very detail oriented.<----this seems to be a comman trait among nurses...lol.
8. assertive<--you have to be in an icu setting
things i consider not so good about me
1. not too comfortable with skills. (only experience is in ns)<---no big deal. how many times do you really have to insert a foley to get it???? once or twice, in an icu you will put a foley maybe once a shift. thats the beauty of the icu, you have all the opportunity in the world to perfect your skills. i might insert 2-4 ivs or more in one shift. it doesnt take long to catch on to the technical skills...worry more about critical thinkin and preventing situations.
2. don't feel very comfortable with time management/prioritizing (yet).<---experiement, bring different report sheets, make your own..whatever helps you stay organized...when i was first out of orientation....after i got report i would sit for about 30 mins (had about an hour before 9pm meds due) and just write down everything i could think of that i had to do for my 2 pts that night. then i would just map it out...
2000:zero evd, icp, uo, csf drainage, fullbody assess/neuro assess
2100: meds, draw cbc
etc. then id make notes on things that needed done and cross them off as i went. we also have dry erase boards in our rooms so i would write all my parameters on there like evd open at 10...bp parameters 18-220, etc.
i never try to get rushed either. plan. integrate tasks. you will find yourself as a newbie running around in circles at times. stop, ask yourself why you just make 4 seperate trips to the supply room when youcould have just made one and picked up fresh linen on the way back...etc. youll get it, it will start to come naturally.
3. have trouble understanding complex systems such as cardiac and neuro but not so sure this wouldn't change if i had more time to devote to learning only those topics (can't in nursing school, so many other things to learn)<---the real lernng takes place once you are out of school. ns gives you the tools and the basic, basick knowledge base to practice nursing. once you starting seeing things in the real world, things will start clicking...ohhh yeah, that makes soo much more sense now....get a good handle on blood pressure bc you will be constantly manipulating bp in the neuro icu. i like to say bp is relative...
4. i have high anxiety levels, low self confidence (pretty sure related to lack of experience).<----dont we all. this is what keeps us safe. you will gain confidence.
5. don't really like the "adrenaline rush" of the er/coding pts. i get that "flight" feeling.:icon_roll <----you will find the more experience you have the less scary it is, well maybe not less scary, but less intimidating. you eventually just start knowing what to expect...uh oh bp is dropping...first instinct: rev trendelenburg...oxygen...etc...you will get there
i would love to get into a specialty where i can really start researching on my own, really learning everything i can. icu appeals because you have 1-2 pts to know everything about. seems like you have more autonomy. i like the fact that maybe the pts stays will be long enough there that i can research their conditions at home, on my own.
*yep pts stay on our unit for a long time so you have the chance of working with that pt several times. thats why i love the icu, i get the ability to concentrate my thoughts on just two patients so i can really critical think..titrating drips, multi system functioning...basically knowing the whole body works and integrating that is awesome. the brain literally controls everything.
assuming a good new grad training program, do you think new grads can be successful in the nicu?
*absolutely. like ive said before: if its all you know you adapt very quickly. plus, as my preceptor said, you are never alone. you are never expected to land a pt on your own, you always have coworkers to support you and teamwork is key! in my opinion the most important part of an orientation program is time with a preceptor. classrooms stuff...eh...you just grad from ns. a good preceptor and the amt oftime with that preceptro is key.
do my above qualities increase my chances or decrease? i'd like opinions. i am an upcoming new grad anguishing over what speciality to choose and where to do my clinical preceptorship. i need to figure it out in, oh, about two weeks! yikes!:uhoh21:
*you sound like youve thought this decision out. i think your concerns are valid and very normal. i think all the new grads in the neuro icu ive talked with (and we have a ton! prob 10-15 on my shift alone) feel the same way. my manager told me: give yourself some credit, you are a new grad, straight out of ns starting into a highly specialized area. your job is to keep your patients safe, the rest will come. just keep learning....everyday.
hope this helps
can you tell how much i love the nicu????