What advice do you wish you’d been given as a new nurse? What advice would you give to yourself if you could go back in time?
There are plenty of tip lists on the Internet for new nurses but most were dreamed up by marketing firms. Let’s hear from some real nurses, with thoughtful ideas.
For example, one paediatric nurse’s advice for new nurses in dealing with families is Don’t say, “I know how you feel” when you have never been in that situation.
She goes on to suggest an alternative: Instead you can say something like: “I can’t begin to imagine how worried you must be, but we are doing everything we can, if you have any questions please ask and if I can’t answer them I will find someone who can, etc”.
Here’s what some of our readers said on Facebook:
- My advice: be strong, be for defining our role better in a way that enables RNs to focus on the technical side or the work. Don’t let people with old ideals get you down. Be the solution. Don’t cave to bullies.
- I’ve only been nursing for 4 months but the best advice I’ve had so far is just to focus on basic nursing care and getting that down pat. Add the rest in as you feel comfortable. People can be impatient with you but better to be slow and get things done well than kill or maim someone by doing something you’re not comfortable with too soon. I ask millions of questions and I like to “watch one, do one” with procedures. It’s part of nursing to teach others but some are better at it than others so don’t take it personally! It’s a constantly changing job
- Take advice from people with careers that you admire.
- For those new nurses I would say to…
1. Always keep patient focused
2. Keep up to date with the evidence
3. Look after yourself
4. Ask loads of questions!
5. Don’t take other nurses negative comments to heart. Your cynical sense of humour will come too.
6. Don’t be afraid of change. It’s inevitable so just embrace it.
7. Love your work! If you don’t, find somewhere else that you do. There are so many wards, hospitals, specialty areas so try until you find your fit.
Good luck and enjoy! 😊
Tell us what you’d tell a new nurse – indeed have you given a new grad any advice recently?