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7th Time NCLEX Taker- Finally Passed

by nursemyb nursemyb (New) New

I have been wanting so badly to be on the other side of this forum and to be able to say that I officially passed the NCLEX RN. I've always looked to Allnurses for encouraging posts and advice to help me pass this test.

Last year was the hardest and most challenging year of my life. I graduated in 2013 from one of the top nursing schools in CA and had my dream job offer waiting for me. I failed the NCLEX the first time in 75 Qs and in turn had to rescind my offer. I was devastated but thought I would be fine if I just studied more and got better scores. When I re-took it a few months later I failed in 122 Qs. I felt helpless, I had done everything that my peers had done who passed and my Kaplan scores were all 60% and above.

This feeling of failure and doubt only continued to worsen each time. Studying my butt off and failing every few months felt second nature. And having to continually explain my situation to family, friends, and co-workers was exhausting. I basically put my life on hold for over a year.

So many times I questioned if nursing was in my path and if I was meant to have this as my career. But I kept pushing through despite the pain and all the negative feelings that I had to deal with on a daily basis because I couldn't imagine giving up on a dream that I hold so close to my heart.

There are many things that helped me that I want to share with anyone going through the same struggle. The love & continual support from family and friends (don't push people away, let them be there for you), yoga, living a healthy lifestyle, but most importantly fostering the belief in yourself and the confidence that you can do it. You are smart, you are capable, and you deserve the happiness and success of attaining a license because you worked so hard in nursing school. Nobody did that except for you, so you can sure as hell pass this test. I let my mind and fear take over every time I sat down to take the test.

Here's what I did differently to conquer the NCLEX the last and final time:

1. Did not study all day everyday. I lived a balanced life for the first time and I believed that was key to mental clarity.

2. Woke up early in the morning, sat at a table and did 100-150 practice questions (timed myself and went with my gut feeling instead of over analyzing) and reviewed rationales after. Stopped studying after 2:30 pm. Every day until test day. I would still go out, I would still have my fun, but I made sure to be consistent with Qs.

-I recommend Hurst for a solid content review, NCLEX-RN Mastery app for on the go studying (they are knowledge basic level questions but you NEED to know these before the higher level questions are given to you), LaCharity for Priority/Delegation Qs, and Kaplan for higher level Qs.

- I did not think NCSBN, Exam Cram, or Hurst (question bank not content) had questions that were reflective of the NCLEX. If you are going to spend money the ones that I bolded are worth it in my opinion.

3. I also received tutoring 4 times. I believe the tutor is a large reason for my success because of the way she taught me to strategize when getting higher levels questions. The NCLEX is like any standardized test, you have to know how they want you to answer the question. She has amazing resources and tips that I used on each and every higher level question on my test.

4. I took 3 days off before the test and went into my exam telling myself that regardless of if I passed or failed I was going to make it eventually. Instead of putting crazy pressure on myself like this test was the end of the world I remained calm and focused. Do whatever works for you to feel as relaxed and positive as possible.

I took the full 265 Qs in 5.5 hours and walked out feeling calm and hopeful. I was exhausted but I was not a blubbering mess like all the times before. Got my RN license in the mail 2 weeks later and have not stopped smiling since. This feeling is worth it and the journey to get there is worth it.

I've learned so much about myself during this time and am so proud of where I am today. Thank you to whoever decided to read all the way down lol. I want you to know whether this is your first time, third time, tenth time to not lose faith. You only fail if you stop trying. You've come this far so don't question yourself or your worth. I really believe that people who go into nursing are special because they genuinely want to help others and have such loving hearts. If you want to go into nursing for the right reasons, never never ever give up. You can do it :)

All the best to everyone! Message me if you have specific questions :)

Edited by tnbutterfly

RNfindingherway, BSN, RN

Has 3 years experience.

Congratulations RN. I am so proud of you. You are the prime example that the race is not to the swift nor the battle to the strong but to those that endures to the end. Perseverance do lead to success. I thank God for your Success Nursemyb.

Hey girl,first of all congratulations on ur acheivement.can I ask u about the tutor u mentioned,did u do private or group study sessions?how did u feel about her way of teaching,and how much did it cost?bcoz I personally failed this exam ,have tried everything out ,,still feels as such a failure.

Congratulations!!! This is truly encouraging because I'm in the same boat but I know i will pass this time around. All the best in your new journey. God bless

Awesome!!!!!!! I really like your post!!! Giving up is not an option!! I failed the first time I took my test in September, since then I've been slacking at studying. Your post just reminds me the reasons why I went to nursing school in the first place. Getting back on my study mode as of now. Confidence, determination, perseverance, patience, courage, hard working, discipline, and faith are the key leading to your success. Thanks for sharing with us!!!

Congrats girlfriend and welcome to the fold! I am pretty sure your post would inspire someone out there who is contemplating leaving nursing because they failed twice or so. We need more nurses..:) So,pals pls do not quit. Quitting is not an option for the brave-hearted. And nursing is for the kind and brave-hearted. That you failed once, twice or even more does not automatically make you a failure. It only means that you need to get up and do something a little differently from what you did before. I really like your post…keep on sharing your testimony to encourage those that are still thinking if nursing is really for them… greta post!

That's amazing! Congrats :) so happy for you!! Glad you didn't gave up!

Congrats! Do you think it was the

Sorry I messed that up. Do you think the questions from Annalise helped or was it the actually tutoring?

I am very happy you achieved success and are now the RN you dreamed of being! Your story is similar to my own. I graduated in 2013 and have since taken the NCLEX RN 3 times. I feel I am better prepared this time than the other 3 because I have come to realize it's not going to kill me if I fail the test. It does not alter who I am in any way. It only means I will have to repeat the test. I have done Hurst, Kaplan, LaCharity PDA, Lippincott... and so many others. I also had 4 sessions with Ms. Garrison and I have been saying one of the 2 prayers you listed. My 4th test is coming up in a few weeks. I believe this time I am passing. From others who have passed, including yourself, I am hearing that one must believe in yourself and have faith in your knowledge and in God's guidance. I have that this time. I'm glad you didn't give up. You are going to be one super fine RN and help many people. God bless you as you go on your journey and please continue to share your story. It is one many need to hear.