According to a recent study, nearly 60 percent of new nurse leave their first job within two years. That's a staggering statistic, and it means that most new nurses are struggling to survive in a demanding and often unforgiving profession.
Nurses have always been in high demand, and the profession is only expected to grow in popularity. Nursing is a challenging but rewarding career, and many new nurses find themselves wondering how they will survive their first year on the job. The reality is that there are many things to learn and remember, which can sometimes be overwhelming. But with some planning and preparation, you can successfully make it through your first year as a nurse.
If you're a new nurse or considering becoming a nurse, it's essential to understand what you're getting into. Nursing is a demanding profession, and it's not always easy. But if you're prepared for the challenges, you'll be more likely to succeed. Here are some tips on surviving your first year as a nurse:
Get organized and stay organized
One of the most important things you can do as a nurse is stay organized. There will be a lot of information to remember and keep track of, and you must have a system in place to help you stay on top of things. Use a planner or calendar to keep track of your patients, their medications, and their appointments. Write everything down, and don't rely on your memory.
Programs such as BSN online can help you learn more about staying organized as a nurse. Online programs offer a flexible way to learn, and you can complete them at your own pace.
Learn to prioritize
As a nurse, you will have many demands on your time. Therefore, you must learn to prioritize and focus on the most important things. There will be times when you have to choose between two tasks, and you need to be able to identify what's most important. Things can change quickly in a healthcare setting, and you need to be able to adjust your priorities on the fly.
Flexibility is an important quality for nurses. Whether it's a change in the patient's condition or a last-minute request from a doctor, you need to be able to adjust and make things work. The reason why flexibility is so important is that it helps you to stay calm under pressure. When you're flexible, you're less likely to get frazzled or stressed out when things change.
Patience is a virtue, and it's one that you'll need as a nurse. You'll deal with many different people, including patients, doctors, and other nurses. Some days will be calm and orderly, while others will be hectic and chaotic. No matter what the situation is, it's important to remain patient. However, it's also important to know your limits. Step away from the situation for a few minutes and clear your head.
Communication is an important part of nursing. You'll need to communicate daily with patients, doctors, and other nurses. It would be best if you learned to communicate effectively so everyone is on the same page.
One way to improve your communication skills is to take a course or attend a seminar. Many different resources are available to help you learn how to communicate effectively. More importantly, don't be afraid to ask questions. If you're not sure about something, ask. It's better to ask a question and get the answer than to make an assumption and get it wrong.
Be a team player
Nursing is a team effort, and you must be a team player. There will be times when you need to rely on other nurses, and they'll need to depend on you. Therefore, you must be able to work together and support each other. If you're having trouble being a team player, many resources are available to help you. Books, articles, and even seminars can help you learn how to be a better team player.
Take care of yourself
One of the most important things you can do as a nurse is take care of yourself. It includes getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, and exercising regularly. It's easy to get caught up in the demands of nursing, but you must make your health a priority.
If you don't take care of yourself, you won't be able to take care of your patients. So finding a balance between caring for yourself and your patients is important. Besides, you'll be a better nurse if you're healthy and well-rested.
Seek out mentors
Mentors can be a great asset to new nurses. They can offer advice, support, and guidance. If you can find a mentor, they can help you navigate your first year as a nurse. There are many different ways to find a mentor. You can ask your friends or family members if they know anyone who's a nurse. You can also look for mentors online or through professional organizations.
Have realistic expectations
Having realistic expectations is one of the most important things you can do as a nurse. Nursing is a demanding profession, and you must be prepared for the challenges that come with it.
If you have realistic expectations, you'll be less likely to get overwhelmed or discouraged. You'll also be more likely to succeed in your career. Another thing to keep in mind is that nursing requires long hours. There will be times when you have to work 12-hour shifts or even longer. Therefore, it would be best if you were prepared for the job's demands.
The Bottom Line
Surviving your first year as a nurse can be challenging, but it's possible if you set yourself up for success. Be sure to take care of yourself, communicate effectively, and be a team player. You should also seek out mentors and have realistic expectations. Most importantly, don't hesitate to ask for help when needed. If you do all these things, you'll be well on your way to a successful career as a nurse.