RN-NCLEX Anxiety, How did you cope?


I am taking my RN-NCLEX this Tuesday. I graduated April 29th and have been studying Kaplan nonstop. I will have finished all the trainer test, sample test and Qbank questions by tomorrow and according to Kaplan and doing pretty good (mid 60's to 70's range).

But I am finding myself becoming more anxious as the test date approaches. I don't remember being this worried when I took my PN-NCLEX.

So 2 questions for those of you that have been there and done that.

1. What did you do to help cope or diminish your anxiety before your NCLEX?

2. They say not to study the day before.... what did you do to keep your mind off of it, help you relax the day before? (I'm worried that I'll just spend all day Monday thinking about it and getting myself very worked up).


TheCommuter, BSN, RN

226 Articles; 27,608 Posts

Specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych. Has 17 years experience.

To reduce your anxiety, just go in there with the reality that NCLEX is not as difficult as many people make it out to be. You only need to answer about 50 percent of the higher level questions in order to pass.

Think about this. 85 percent of U.S.-educated graduates pass NCLEX on the first attempt, which means more than four out of five test takers pass it the first time around. Focus on the statistics; they're in your favor. Good luck!

Ackeem, BSN, RN

378 Posts

OP if someone told me i had 85 percent chance of winning the lotto i would be out picking out my mansion. With that said i watched a movie call 300 before my exam and it got me real hyped up and less nervous.

i was reviewing stuff 1 hour leading up to my exam though. In fact i literally stop reviewing when the pearson vue associate put my phone in a pastic bag :banghead: and gave me my locker key. she then gave me a paper to read rules that i couldn't even read straight because at that point i was ready to just start.

I think you'll be fine though OP

Specializes in School Nurse and PRN. Has 1 years experience.

I test Wednesday and have really bad anxiety. I've been making it a point to keep telling myself YOU WILL PASS... Good luck and keep us posted


10 Posts

@Ackeem...when u were studying uWorld, did u make pharmacology flash cards or just studied the meds from uWorld?

Ackeem, BSN, RN

378 Posts

@Ackeem...when u were studying uWorld, did u make pharmacology flash cards or just studied the meds from uWorld?

No i didn't study individual meds, i memorized the suffixes and prefixes of the different drug classes. So for example i would learn everything about NSAIDs (teretogenic after 30 week gestation, causes urinary retention, peptic ulcers, nephrotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, may exacerbate resipratory symptoms etc).

I also made a PowerPoint of all drug classes that caused; othrostatic hypotension, ventricular tachycardia, hepatoxicity, nephrotoxicity, ototoxicity, agranulocytosis, rhabdomylosis, serotonin syndrome, neuroleptic malignant syndrome.

made a PowerPoint for drug antidote for magnesium toxicity, wafarin, heparin, NSAIDs, benzodiazepine etc. I had PowerPoints on drug interaction for hebal remedies e.g. st john worts+serotonin reuptake inhibitors may cause serotonin syndrome.

I memorized therapeutic ranges for lithium, digoxin, carbamazepine and few others. Thats pretty much how i studied pharm, all these info i got from UWorld. i memorized randon facts for some common drugs such as insulin, metaclopramide, levydopa, etc.

most of the meds i saw on my exam were common though. I did get 1 med that i have never seen or heard of in my life, couldn't even remember the name to look it up when i went home.

Hope this helps :)


10 Posts

Thanks u so much... I feel a little bit better and I'll keep u posted[emoji22][emoji26][emoji25][emoji25]


739 Posts

I heard liquor helps;)


10 Posts

[emoji23][emoji23][emoji23] I need it...


144 Posts

Specializes in Nursey stuff. Has 36+ years experience.
But I am finding myself becoming more anxious as the test date approaches. I don't remember being this worried when I took my PN-NCLEX.

If you passed the PN-NCLEX, you will pass the RN-NCLEX. I thought the PN was much more difficult (LPN grad 1980). As a LPN you are already a nurse, so build upon that knowledge and know how. You are lacking confidence. They are giving you the answers,so use some critical thinking skills and kick butt! :up:

Specializes in Pediatrics, Emergency, Trauma. Has 18 years experience.

How did I cope?

I also studied in this fashion:

The issue may not necessarily the source of the review, but how one approaches the NCLEX itself: understanding the four concepts of becoming a competent, entry-level nurse:

1. Safe, effective care;

2.Health promotion;

3.Physiological Integrity;

4.Psychosocial integrity

Will determine WHAT the question is asking you; the question may be Respiratory related-but is it a Health Promotion or a Safety, or a Physiological or a Psychosocial one? Would you know the difference and choose the BEST answer?

Once one understands the concepts of NCLEX, they can do so successfully.

When practicing the questions, prepare the questions like a mock NCLEX exam, review the minimum and then work up to the maximum for endurance purposes.

After looking at your report, focus on the weakness and review questions and rationales; make mock NCLEX tests and start with the minimum and gradually until the maximum; you have to have an endurance in answering application questions.

After each "exam", make sure you are reviewing the rationales; any rationales you are not clear on THEN look up content for reference.

As a LPN transitioning to the RN role; you must build upon your scope; you have to "think like an entry level RN" on the NCLEX-RN...thinking like an "RN" helped me while I was in school and on the NCLEX.

Specializes in ICU.
I heard liquor helps;)

Believe me this is my go-to for calming my nerves until I take mine in the beginning of June!! A glass of wine a day, keeps the anxiety away!! :laugh: