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New Grad Stress and Anxiety

by osto-me osto-me (New) New

So I graduated about 2 months ago and I ended up landing a Float LPN position on medicine units. I hardly had any medicine experience at all, other than my clinical rotations when i was still in school. During those rotations, we were only assigned 2 patients.

I've had a couple of buddy/orientation shifts already. They're about to send me on my own soon (i'm able to ask for more buddy shifts), and just thinking about it gives me anxiety and chest pains to the point where i can barely breathe. It's worse when I'm on the floor handling 4-6 patients, which I am totally NOT used to. I absolutely know nothing. Heck, i even had trouble hooking up a primary IV line with a piggyback on a PICC line. I felt like i disappointed my preceptor or maybe he thought i was a joke. I feel like the only thing i know how to do right are taking vitals lol. There's just so many things i don't know how to do and it makes me feel super incompetent. Like medications, or even diagnoses, i feel like i dont know enough about them and the interventions associated with each and every thing. My time management is god awful as well. I can barely handle 2 total care patients alone. I feel like quitting and it's only been a couple of weeks on the floor. Being a float nurse as well just stresses me out even more cause i have to get used to 6 units and know where everything is. Am i the only one who feels like this? Any tips to get through this?

FIRST OF ALL - Congratulations on your recent graduation and license! That is an accomplishment!

Secondly....I too am a brand new nurse. I have been working since Nov 13th, I have two weeks on the floor. I am up to 4 patients now. AND guess what....I too don't know everything. AND get nervous and anxious...AND that is okay! We are brand new nurses! Of course there is stuff we don't know, and stuff we are going to be nervous about. If we weren't they def shouldn't have hired us...ppl's lives are in our hands! It's okay to feel that way....just go in everyday and do your best. It will come. It will get easier. You will get it :)


Has 12 years experience.

I ditto the above comment. You've made it this far through nursing school and landed yourself a job which you can get great work experience. EVERYONE struggles in the beginning and if they say they haven't they're lying! I felt insecure as a new grad RN for MONTHS. And every patient I had seem to be able to tell that I was new.

Tips: I'd say you just have to stick through it and do your best every time you go in. Studying what you've seen at work helps too. If you're not sure about signs and symptoms of recognizing seizures for instance, go back to your notes from school and refresh your memory. I was told to keep a journal when I first started and I did this for about 8 months until I started feeling more comfortable with what I was doing. AND in any doubt, ask your peers for help! Don't be afraid to ask questions.

Good luck with your endeavors! You'll be fine, just give it some time and hard work!