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Too shy for nursing

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by AS92 AS92 (New) New Student

17 Profile Views; 3 Posts

I’m a student from the UK on my first work placement. My mentor has told me I’m too shy. 
how can I just become ‘not shy’

ive been shy my whole life and it’s intimidating working on a big ward with doctors and nurses who all know what they are doing

please help ☹️

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Silverdragon102 has 31 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC.

7 Followers; 1 Article; 38,963 Posts; 143,557 Profile Views

What year are you? I was shy and going on the wards was a bit daunting but as I moved through the years as a student I made more friends and was more open. Another thing you could do is push yourself forward to do things that can do 

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by AS92 New Student

3 Posts; 17 Profile Views

My first year, first placement so I thought they would expect me to lack confidence really. I thought I would naturally gain confidence the more I progress but I feel this has set me back because now I’m worried I may fail in the future due to my shyness.

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Silverdragon102 has 31 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC.

7 Followers; 1 Article; 38,963 Posts; 143,557 Profile Views

First placement is daunting, just give yourself time to get used to the area. See if there are other students you can team up with whilst you learn stuff and gain confidence. Your mentor should be more understanding 

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by AS92 New Student

3 Posts; 17 Profile Views

I feel ok with the work I guess I just don’t come across as confident. She said I look lost sometimes when people speak to me 🙁 I don’t know how to appear confident. Thankyou for getting back to me xx

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12 Followers; 3,686 Posts; 27,410 Profile Views

On 12/3/2019 at 2:18 PM, AS92 said:

I don’t know how to appear confident.

Consider taking stock of your non-verbals, it's just a tiny piece of the overall issue/scenario I realize, but it will make a difference in how people view you and may actually help you feel more confident.

Examples: Make sure your general appearance is neat. Make sure you are standing up straight/tall, shoulders back (as opposed to shrugged forward or arms crossed/etc.)--avoid a posture that looks as if you are actually trying to shrink/hide yourself. Make good eye contact; make sure you don't appear to be avoiding it. Stand in front of a mirror and practice a pleasant, attentive face; learn what that feels like so you can do it at your clinical. Try to move with a purpose - I realize that's easier said than done when you don't know exactly what you're doing yet, but practice a brisk, purposeful gait whenever possible (without looking harried/frazzled).

Force yourself to be towards the front of the pack, not hanging back, when things are happening or there is something to see/do/learn.

Practice some stock replies you can say confidently even if you know you will need to consult a resource. For example: "Okay, thanks for letting me know; I will check it out."

Don't be afraid of not knowing things. It isn't lack of knowledge that is looked down upon at your stage of learning but rather apparent lack of initiative and interest. Understanding that can be to your advantage because you can then ask yourself "what would convey my initiative and my interest to others?" and then do those things.

Sorry I know these are just random tips.

Good luck to you! 🙂 It'll be okay.

Edited by JKL33

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FullGlass has 1 years experience as a BSN, MSN, NP and specializes in Adult and Geriatric Primary Care.

5 Followers; 2 Articles; 919 Posts; 8,068 Profile Views

My nursing instructors kept saying I didn't seem confident enough.  That sort of created a downward spiral because when they kept saying that to me, it further decreased my confidence.

However, a good friend coached me on how to phrase questions and statements to seem more confident.

After my ABSN, I went straight through to the NP program and never had confidence issues again!  I think the "boot camp" mentality of the BSN program can make students nervous.

Hang in there.

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Lucydog14 has 13 years experience.

58 Posts; 456 Profile Views

Fake it til you make it. I used to hate the thought of going into a patient that I didn’t know and having to converse. Deep breath and just dive in. It gets easier.

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On 12/4/2019 at 9:49 PM, JKL33 said:

Make good eye contact; make sure you don't appear to be avoiding it.

This is huge. Eye contact is one of the most prominent conveyors of both attention and confidence.

I took a public speaking course a few years ago and one tip that really stuck with me is to nod every once and a while when someone is speaking to you. I believe that a sign of confidence is being genuinely engaged in an interaction instead of seemingly shirking away from it (even though you're not intending to) so the more that you can portray that image, the better.

It is completely natural to be intimidated by the wealth of knowledge possessed by everyone around you in a hospital. But instead of letting that be at the forefront of your mind, I would encourage you to view it as a myriad of opportunities to learn. Instructors tend to appreciate an obvious (but not overbearing) willingness to learn and try new things.

The fact that you reached out for advice on such a public platform shows that you're not bereft of self-assurance. I have no doubt that as you acclimate, it'll show. You got this!

Edited by Shan

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