For nursing students who lack adequate time management skills, life tends to get extremely chaotic. You are expected to juggle your school responsibilities and balance your personal life. Once you graduate, you are now probably ready to settle down and start your routine as a professional. Rest assured, on your first day you would realize that working as a nurse is certainly not a walk in the park. While you may be taught various time management skills in your nursing school, you will definitely require more once you start working as a nurse.
You cannot become a great nurse overnight, but there are certain time management skills you can still lean. If you effectively manage your day to day tasks, the transition will become easier. The overall process will not be as overwhelming and you will be in control.
This is one of the toughest steps and will not certainly happen overnight. Learning how you can prioritize your tasks can be one of the biggest challenges you face as a nurse. As a nurse, the complexity you face will vary greatly and most will not be the ones you are familiar with.
Experienced nurses believe that the best way you can help a novice nurse thrive is by offering the training. Your experience over the past couple of years together will help them deal with the challenges. For starters, if you are an experienced nurse, you can ask yourself these questions:
In the start, when you spend time to ask yourself these question, you will feel that you are just wasting time, however, you will be accustomed to the process in some time. By learning how to prioritize through questioning, and the experience of others, will be able to assess the demands of situations more efficiently and effectively. Critical thinking goes hand in hand with time management.
Nurses and medical professionals are definitely unique as they have to remain focused, calm and collected at all instances. You work in an environment that has health and hope as its virtue, but it can be extremely scary for some families and patients. Alongside, you also have to deal with stressors that are part and parcel of your job. For instance, you will be pulled in all directions even when you are lethargic and tired.
While setting priorities and planning are integral skills you need as a nurse, but you also need to be flexible and patient. Moreover, there will be times when things will not go as per your plan, but you will need to maintain your calm demeanor.
Another important part of your job is confronting the unknown scenarios. Even if you are stressed since you were not able to complete a task, embraced several interruptions during your shift, or dealt with a difficult situations, you need to assure yourself that it's ok and things like this happen.
If you are working with a frazzled mind, you will be all over the place. The best thing you can do is plan your shift and be in the right direction. Reflect and remember the bigger picture of your role. Try to soak in the positive vibes and don't dwell in the past.
As a nurse, who is fairly new to the field, you will be doing things a little slower than other nurses around you. Please understand that it is normal. This happens to everyone who is new to the field and it is something extremely normal. Try to do things at a faster pace, but don't push yourself to the brim. Things take time and it is better to do things right than doing wrong in haste.
It needs to be understood that the more you repeat certain tasks, you will get a better grip on them and will also understand the needs of your patients better. You can also start clustering things together over the passage of time. For instance, you can list all the tasks that you need to complete before you run across the ward or prioritize which tasks need to be performed first and what can be done later.
Give yourself time, take breaks, go to the restroom, talk to your peers or play a game. Make sure that you relax yourself before you delve back to your routine. Nurses are always on their toes and often they don't get any time for themselves. If you don't take a break, there is a high probability that you may get tired or experience fatigue.
Manage your schedule, give yourself time and be ahead of your game. As a new nurse, it can all be overwhelming, but once you get the heck of it, you will feel a lot better.