Are you past the challenge of finishing nursing school and looking forward to a successful career? Are you looking for ways to become a better nurse and make positive changes in people’s lives?
Nursing is a challenging yet rewarding job. Nurses work round the clock caring for patients while juggling personal and professional roles simultaneously. Understaffing and long working hours make a nurse’s job tough. When nurses are required to multitask in such a hectic schedule, it is no surprise they may become overwhelmed and ignore self-improvement.
However, you can avoid this by working on your skills and personality. A good nurse understands what the patients need and helps them stay on the road to recovery. Thus, good nurses help patients navigate their illnesses and sustain healthy lives.
That said, here are some tips to help you become better at your job, even if things get tough.
Advance your education
Higher learning is the key to significant development in your skills and clinical knowledge. If you are eager to provide quality patient care, consider furthering your education with a postgrad degree. On-the-job knowledge and experiences are crucial to your growth as a nurse. But at some point, you must specialize in a certain niche to help your patients and follow your passion.
Acquiring specialized education also opens up opportunities for a second career for nurses already practicing at a basic level. This could include a part-time job in a specialized niche, teaching opportunities, or leadership opportunities. When you become adept in what you do, you will have greater job satisfaction and personal and professional growth. So, acquire more education and take your career to the next level.
Take a person-centered approach
Taking a person-centric rather than task-oriented approach is crucial for nurses to deliver quality care. At times, nurses become so caught up in their long list of tasks that they become inattentive to their patient’s needs and expectations. However, effective nurse-patient interaction is central to a patient’s recovery.
No matter how busy you are, patients see you as the person they can talk to and expect care, respect, and undivided attention. So, take a person-centric approach and connect with your patients. Call the patients by their names, educate them about their condition, and address their concerns about the treatment plans. These little steps may seem too hard to complete, but they will help you become a better nurse.
Do a thorough job
Nurses must be thorough while working as their job affects a patient’s life. Whether you are a fresh graduate or an experienced nurse, a little negligence can make you lose your credibility as a nurse. Thus, a few simple habits can go a long way in making you an expert at your job.
Ensure to review all the chart work you do and list all your actions, like the medications you administer to your patients. Note important details during every interaction with a patient. Ask yourself questions like, is this the right patient; is it a suitable dose; is it the best course of treatment?
Although such detailed work will add more burden to your workday, this will potentially minimize the risk of errors. Also, it will ensure your patients’ safety and enhance your performance.
Improve your communication skills
Good communication skills are one of the most fundamental skills you need to excel as a nurse. You must know how to convey your message effectively while talking to a patient or use a formal speech required when talking to a medical professional. Learning to communicate effectively takes time and effort.
At first, you may find yourself unable to debrief a doctor or use a lot of medical jargon while talking to patients. However, you must ensure patients follow and comprehend whatever you say. A lack of clarity and explanation in conversation can put your patients in danger. Even if you are not good at the start, like most novice nurses, taking lessons online can help you sharpen your communication skills in no time.
Ask for help
Working in a real-life healthcare setup is a challenge for every new nurse. Chances are, you will find yourself in unfathomable dilemmas very often. For example, you may find it impossible to deal with a difficult patient, fail to decide on which nursing niche to specialize in, and how to balance work-study life. Or you may be stuck contemplating how to resolve a dispute with the administrative officers or even worse scenarios like deciding whether to continue working as a nurse. Aren’t these the situations where we need a few tips from someone experienced? Yes they are.
A mentor serves as a motivator, supporter, and role model. They help guide their students through unprecedented challenges through their vast knowledge and clinical experiences. Thus, look for a mentor and ask them for guidance. Or look for an extra set of hands if your plate is full.
Stay current on medical knowledge
Healthcare is changing faster than ever before. Technological advancements, the severity of diseases, and their diversity are leading to new research every day. Thus, healthcare workers, especially nurses, must remain updated on what’s happening.
Staying up-to-date on medical advancements is crucial, but hard for busy nurses. However, it is vital for growing your knowledge. Take out time for attending medical conferences, networking events, and seminars. If you are too busy to leave the hospital, spare a few minutes and read your hospital’s newsletter. You can also subscribe to nursing journals to stay notified of innovations and advancements in healthcare.
Becoming a nurse is easy, but becoming a nurse whom patients love and respect is difficult. But nothing can stop you if you are committed to improvement and growth and stay persistent. We have listed a few tips in this article that will make your efforts worthwhile. Consider furthering your education, connecting with your patients, working on your communication skills, etc. Moreover, find a mentor to steer past challenges and stay updated on medical knowledge. These simple tips will help you acquire the essential skills you need to become a better nurse.
Healthcare Business Today is a leading online publication that covers the business of healthcare. Our stories are written from those who are entrenched in this field and helping to shape the future of this industry. Healthcare Business Today offers readers access to fresh developments in health, medicine, science, and technology as well as the latest in patient news, with an emphasis on how these developments affect our lives.