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Taylor1432 Taylor1432 (New Member)

What's next? I hate my job

Stress 101   (649 Views 7 Comments)
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I am a new grad who started orientation on my Med/Surg unit in July of this year and was on my own by the end of August on AM shift. So all together I've been on my own for 3 and a half months.

Some days are worse than others but overall I just feel like a terrible nurse and I hate my job. It sounds awful but I honestly feel like I am doing my patients a disservice by being their nurse. Here are the reasons why...

-I feel like I'm missing things that come so naturally to other nurses. Everyone says, "you're new, you can't catch everything" but what if that was your family member?

-With my 5 patients I find it so hard to know what the plan is for all of them. I can't ever remember their names half of the time (which I am ashamed to admit). I'm just so distracted by all of the other things going on. I even come in early to prep and I STILL don't feel prepared. I don't spend nearly enough time with my patients because I'm so busy charting and doing other tasks/passing meds.

-Did I learn anything in nursing school? I'm having a hard time remembering a lot of the common disease processes and medications. I went to a very reputable school. I feel like I forgot everything already.

-Every time I give report I feel like I missed so many things.

I was a CNA for almost a decade(most of those years on my current unit!) and I always knew I wouldn't like med surg. My main interests are PICU, NICU, ICU and ED. After this, I don't feel competent enough to work in these specialties so I am feeling pretty hopeless.

**Did any of you start out in a Med/Surg type setting and go on to thrive in critical care??

 

I'm sorry this is so long. If you took the time to read it, thank you! I could really use some advice. After being in healthcare for so long, I didn't expect to struggle this hard. I really feel like giving up.

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Taylor1432, just the fact that you wanted to become a nurse and help others speaks volumes to your ability and character. First come up with a really good worksheet of your patients, their dx's, etc. Secondly, gaining experience in specialty nursing will not happen instantly and not within 5 months. As hard as it will be to gain knowledge in differant areas 'over time' you will know when you feel more focused and natural in one area versus another. I hope it helps as I went through different specialty areas until I found my niche.

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I actually posted a similar post (well not exactly about hating my job, but more about struggling with anxiety from the job and whatnot) about 3 years ago here asking for help when I first started working as a new grad nurse on the telemetry floor. The new grad blues is what many call it including myself. You'll get through over time. Happens to everyone including myself.

Right now, it's all about learning and getting a routine down for yourself as well as time management. It's great to come early, come earlier if you don't feel prepared. Get your papers on your 5 patients. Sort them in terms of acuity. It's OK to not know your patients name. Keep your patient's SBAR/handoff sheet on you at all times and pull it out before you enter their room. I always do that the the first or second time I enter my patient's room so I know their name and have all their info in my hand.

Charting and passing meds will NEVER go away, the only way to speed it is up is to organize and do time management and to cluster your care. If you have 0800 and 0900 meds together, bring them and do your assessments between that time frame. There is no reason to give a med at 0800 then leave and come back at 0900 to give a med (unless there are specific orders to give a med at certain time or there are reschedule issues for doses). Also, in terms of doing nursing tasks (assessment, starting IV, change tubing, etc etc), schedule them around the meds or during times you know you will go in a patients room. If you need to help clean up your patient, bring the meds in, bring your IV start kits with you, etc. If you think it will take awhile to do a nursing task, do it later if you're currently busy. Try not to waste time running in and out of patient rooms. Bring everything together aka clustering care so you go into patient's rooms less amount of times = saving more time. Unfortunately, there's no really way to speed up charting until you get used to the clicks.

You as a nurse are not expected to never every detail about your patient. You will only have them for 12 hours, maybe one or two more shifts but that's it. Don't put yourself down because you don't know your patient that well. Spending time with patient's doesn't necessarily equate to how good you are a nurse. There are many times where my total time spent with the patient because they were "easy" was an hour, or even less. That doesn't make me a bad nurse. If a patient is stable and doesn't need anything and all orders and nursing care are done, there is no reason to force yourself onto them. Do the care that is required and a little extra is always nice, but if none is needed, no need to put yourself down.

Just like you, the only main things I got out of nursing school were meds, main diseases, and communication. Everything else was learned on the job and through experience over time.

In regards to your report, you are not there to tell the full news story on each of your patient. Tell the main points, your assessments, recommendations, and move on.

I only answered based on what you posted in your OP, but if you need more detailed advice, I would be more than happy to help you. I'm only 3 years an RN myself, but have plenty of knowledge to share especially about the first year of nursing.

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My support is pretty basic. Do you show up for your shifts? If your answer is 'yes,' you are WAY ahead of the game whether you know it or not. I work on a busy med-surg floor too. I am two weeks into the clinical orientation after having stepped away from the bedside for 22 years. I was hired for days because they have call ins all the time. I am slow as a tortoise just now, but you know what? I'm there. And that makes me doing twice as much as the nurse who calls in. The post above has some great pointers for clinical organization and I will be trying to incorporate them into my own practice.

But the patients that I am patient with, I'm helping. Our floor is like Taco Bell take-out all day long. I kid you not! At any point today there were at least 2 of my six patients unable to make it to the restroom in time. I spent more time cleaning up poop than nursing. These poor people were mortified, but I made them feel less ashamed and upset about their predicament. I made their day better. And I didn't learn that in nursing school and I didn't forget it in my 22 years away from the bedside. No matter the time spent at the bedside, make it kind and you are doing a good job.

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If it helps you feel better, I think i'm a good nurse, and very often, I forget my patients names!! :roflmao:You will get the hang of it!

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What you're feeling is normal and you WILL get faster and more organized and be able to keep up but it takes TIME! Use brain sheets (google some and try them until you find one YOU like), use sticky notes for all those new orders and requests that just came up and mark them off as you do them. Write down anything you want to know more about and on your days off look them up. Keep a handy little notebook in your pocket and common IV meds you give write down how long to push if you can't remember, procedures for giving blood so you don't forget the steps, or whatever makes it easier and less time consuming for you to refer to. Make sure you take breaks. I know it's hard with so much to do but many things can wait 15 more min. Then hang in there until you can transfer to a different area if you want but DON'T GIVE UP! We've all been there.

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