Tips for Managing or Preventing Anxiety for New Nurses
Where Did the New Nurse Anxiety Start?
As a first step, determine the source of the anxiousness. Is it a worry of making a medical error? Is it the fear of failing to complete the project on time or of being re-admitted? Are coworkers being unhelpful and a nurse feeling abandoned or as if asking for assistance is a bother?
If the anxiety is related to diagnosing or performing a skill, the nurse should spend additional time researching and practicing feeling more prepared. This, of course, comes with time and experience. Nurses usually specialize in a certain discipline, such as orthopedics or pediatrics, which exposes them to the same surgeries and diseases with the same treatments. As a result, nurses should spend time researching a disease process or drug with which they are unfamiliar. Make a note of it or print it down and save it in a folder for future reference. This will increase nurses’ knowledge, resulting in increased confidence and expertise.
However, anxiety can also be a result of a lack of support. These are the kinds of issues that must be reported to leadership. Certain nurses require more orientation, but this does not mean they are incapable of success. Every individual learns differently and at a different rate. If a nurse is uneasy, it is up to them to request an alternative assignment or patient. Additionally, they could indicate the need for greater assistance or resources.
Locate A Mentor
While orientation is complete, learning and collaboration do not. It is advisable to seek out a mentor to ensure continued success as a nurse. It is preferable if the mentor is another nurse on the unit, but it might alternatively be a knowledgeable friend or teacher. According to one study, emotional support from more experienced nurses increased emotions by offering certainty, stability, and a sense of belonging. This alleviated tension and anxiety, resulting in a boost in self-confidence and stronger ties with coworkers.
Discover The Appropriate Rhythm
Each nurse operates slightly differently and has their own distinct schedule. Take note of the nurses on the unit and their daily schedules, or even better, ask them about it! Some individuals maintain extremely extensive brain sheets in which they record all current test values, medications, and medical histories. Others may want to initiate medication passes immediately. Some nurses immediately capture their evaluation findings, while others wait till they have more time later. It’s typical for it to take between six and twelve months to really settle into a role and establish a routine. As with initiating an IV or changing a colostomy, time management is a taught skill.
From Those Who Have Been There, New Nurses’ Tips
- Never be frightened to voice your mind. Questions are necessary and may help to avert future errors.
- Bear in mind that nursing is a 24-hour job. Avoid feeling compelled to complete all tasks in a single shift.
- Pretend not to understand how to perform a skill if you are unsure. Solicit assistance or arrange to shadow a more senior nurse.
- Remind yourself that tomorrow is a new day with new possibilities.
- Leave work at the office. Nurses should avoid becoming obsessed with things they forgot to do or say.
- Priority is always given to the patient. As long as they are safe and their basic requirements are addressed, a nurse is performing their duties properly.
- New nurses should avoid becoming overwhelmed by working excessive overtime or staying late. They, like everyone else, require rest and healing.
- Prepare yourself. Ensure that you have adequate sleep, that your scrubs are prepared, and that you arrive on time.
- Make the most of your vacation time. Get out of the house, engage in physical activity, or even plan a getaway. Concentrate on activities that help you recharge and are unrelated to nursing.
Nurses’ Self-Care Guide
It is critical for new nurses to remember that they cannot and will not know everything. Even nurses with twenty years of experience must still ask questions and conduct research! New nurses must allow time for acclimatization, keeping in mind that critical thinking develops with time and experience, and that asking for help is never an embarrassment. By approaching each day with an open mind and a desire to do their best work, the worry will begin to subside. They will unknowingly play the part of the seasoned nurse assisting a rookie nurse in overcoming their own worries.