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I just became an RN. I feel like I don’t know enough and that my skills aren’t where they need to be. Should I feel like this?

Question:

Dear Donna,

I passed my NCLEX RN in September after failing it the first time. I also had a hard time in nursing school with test taking. I have previous experience as a CNA and LPN. But now that I have become an RN, I feel like I don’t know enough and that my skills aren’t where they need to be. Should I feel like this, or is it just because of the hard time I had becoming an RN? I did well in my LPN program and passed boards the first time, but I had a hard time with my RN. Do you have any advice for me?

Shantee

Dear Donna replies:

Dear Shantee,

You are experiencing what every new RN grad goes through. Read the article “New Grad Woes” at http://www.dcardillo.com/articles/newgradwoes.html. We all start out in the same place. And because the hospital environment is more challenging than ever, it will take some time to build confidence and competence.

Don’t despair. There are steps you can take to get acclimated to your new role, build support systems for yourself, and manage your stress. Read “New Grads: You Can Do It!” at http://www.dcardillo.com/articles/new-grads.html and “Lean on Me” at http://www.dcardillo.com/articles/leanonme.html. Also read my book Your First Year as a Nurse, which is available at http://www.nurse.com/CE/7010.

Working as an RN is different from working as an LPN, even though some people don’t realize just how different it is. If you are patient with yourself and your learning and use the above-referenced resources and related advice, you will get to where you want to go. The road may be rocky, but the destination is worth the trip. Persistence and determination will always win out in the end. You can definitely do this — I know you can.

Best Wishes,
Donna


Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nursing Spectrum/NurseWeek’s “Dear Donna” and author of Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional and The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career. Information about the books is available at www.nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.nurse.com/asktheexperts/deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call (800) 866-0919 or visit http://events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.

By | 2008-10-21T00:00:00-04:00 October 21st, 2008|Categories: Blogs, Nursing careers and jobs|0 Comments

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