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15 Pieces of Advice from Seasoned Nurses to Brand New Nurses
Starting a new job is never easy. Especially when it’s your first job out of school and you’re now a registered nurse flying solo for the first time.
While it’s not always easy, you can take comfort in knowing that hundreds of thousands have been in your same position, including some members of our online community of nurses on Facebook. With years of experience and sage advice this group was more than happy to share their tips for new nurses!
Keep reading for a roundup of helpful advice and wise words that will be sure to help you on your first day on the job and beyond:
1. “Find a good nurse to be your mentor while you get your feet wet.” – Donna
2. “Make or buy a nursing report sheet and stick to a system that works for you so you’re less likely to forget something.” – Jessica
3. “Always ask questions, especially if you have a gut feeling about it.” – Tazialynn
4. “Draw boxes next to your to-do list and highlight them based on priority. You can focus on the less priority boxes at a later time without forgetting what they are!” – Amanda
5. “Listen, watch and learn attentively from senior nurses. You can learn a lot from them.” – Helen
6. “If you’ve never done something on a real person, go over the procedure with a colleague and go for it!” – Edwin
7. “Look at your patient so you notice their nonverbal communication. Find ways to assess fine motor skill where they don’t notice it. For example, when working home health have them reach for pen when signing paperwork. My assessment begins the minute I enter their room or when they open the door. Use ALL of your senses! Actively listen to patients and their family!” – Kay
8. “Always carry 2 pens and a sharpie! First thing I was ever told on the job.” – Gabe
9. “Ask a lot of questions about the subject. If you ask questions and listen it is easier for you to diagnose.” – Bonita
10. “Never fake not knowing something. It could cost you your life and career!” – Diann
11. “Treat others how you would want to be treated.” – Delrose
12. “Time management takes time. Be patient with yourself. You'll get there!” – Mikaela
13. “Don't throw others under the bus. Help them learn. It's always a learning process.” – Rhonda
14. “Be a team member and never say it's not my job. In nursing the patient is everybody's job, so to speak. Help one another.” – Ann
15. “Document everything!” – Vernell
Want more nursing career advice?
My Nursing Specialty: Nurse Consultant
Ask a MSN – Family Nurse Practitioner Graduate: Rebecca Kaufman
Ask RN-BSN Graduate – Melissa Frazier-Gaitan
By Meg Tokars
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