Author's Note: A New Thing Nurse follower recently asked me what advice I would give to a new nurse starting their first nurse job. This post is inspired by her and all the recently minted, new nurses who are starting their nursing careers! Congratulations to you all!
Are you a new grad nurse starting your first job? Here are some tips to take with you to work to make things go a little easier.
1. Be open to learning. – There will be so much to learn, and you can’t learn it all at once. Be open to days where you will learn a lot and other days where you may learn only a little. The important this is just to stay open to learning. If you close your mind to learning, you will never grow into the best nurse that you can be.
2. Ask all your questions. – There are seriously no bad questions. Lives literally depend on your work, so ask anything that pops in your head. Off-the-cuff tips and advice that I received from co-workers over the years have saved my behind so many times. Pepper your preceptor and colleagues with your questions and absorb all of their pearls of wisdom that you can.
3. Document everything that you do. – The old adage is absolutely true. If you didn’t document it, it never happened. If people are rushing you and telling you that you do not have time to document, remind them that it’s part of your job. There will be a time where you have to learn a good pace to balance patient care and documentation, but it’s an essential part of nursing.
4. Be kind to everyone you work with from the housekeeper to the CEO. – You never know who will save you on a busy day in the future. Frequently it’s the frontline staff that will help you the most in a pinch, so be kind to all.
5. Remember that healthcare is a team sport. – Always be willing to help, as well as ask for help when you need it. No one can do this job alone. If you have a spare minute, make a bed or clear some trays. The good you put out will always come back to you.
And most importantly – TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. Nursing can be hard. Don’t fall victim to burnout by setting too high of expectations as you start your career. Make time for self-care and find a good support system. You will a need a tribe to thrive.
Good luck! This will be hard, but you are joining the most amazing profession. And know that the #newthingnursetribe will always be here for you every step of the way.
- Sarah @ New Thing Nurse
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About the Author - Sarah K. Wells, MSN, RN, CEN, CNL is an educator, speaker, blogger and owner of New Thing Nurse, a professional and academic coaching company for the nursing world. New Thing Nurse is organized to provide support and guidance to aspiring nurses, newly graduated nurses, and veteran RNs looking to make a change in their life.
Whether it’s a new school, new job or new idea,
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