Nursing is a highly rewarding profession that has grown popular over the years. Being a nurse can be incredibly demanding, as nurses routinely face challenges that require them to perform at their best and keep organized, regardless of the situation, including writing shift reports and updating their colleagues about patients after long nights of work. If you plan to pursue a career in this dynamic field, here are six tips to help you excel and achieve success as a nurse.
Set clear goals
Once you’ve decided to become a nurse, you must define your goals early on. There are several different career paths you can pursue in the nursing field. To determine which path you’d like to follow, start by listing down the things you want to accomplish and create a realistic time frame for each one. Be specific when setting your targets and align them with your values. Naturally, some careers in the nursing field are more lucrative than others. To illustrate, the average traveling nurse salary is higher compared to staff nurses, which can be attributed to the fact that they fill short-term needs, accept assignments in areas with nursing shortages, and receive special compensation for their flexibility. In addition to these benefits, many nurses are also able to specialize in hard-to fill specialties and receive additional remuneration for doing so. As such, a traveling nurse´s earning potential is often increased due to these factors. Not to worry though, a salary comparison is quick and easy. Ultimately, you must evaluate your goals regularly and adjust them as you see fit.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions
With the influx of technology and new practices, it is natural to get overwhelmed. Poor comprehension and misinformation can lead to costly medical errors. It is vital that you ask for clarification if you’re unsure of your task. Never hesitate to ask questions, but make sure you do it respectfully and appropriately.
Invest in yourself
To succeed in this highly-competitive profession, you should continuously look for ways to improve yourself. Nursing is a profession that requires ongoing progression and continual qualification. The journey begins with becoming a registered nurse (RN) and subsequently choosing specialized fields while steadily climbing the career ladder. While experienced professionals in the field can offer guidance to aspiring nurses, an abundance of online resources is available to aid in preparation for important exams like NCLEX. Preparing for the NCLEX can be time-consuming, but there are numerous online materials, including mock tests on Career Employer, designed to assist individuals in studying and getting ready for the exam. By utilizing resources like NCLEX PN and RN practice questions, you can study independently and assess your readiness for the exam while enhancing your retention of the material.
Consider attending seminars, conferences, or academic workshops designed to enhance your knowledge and skills. While registered nurses are not required to get post graduate nursing certificates, doing so can increase your earning potential and widen your career prospects. Being proactive in pursuing professional development opportunities will give you a competitive advantage over your peers and make you more confident in handling your duties.
Find a mentor
Another way to enrich your nursing career is to find a mentor in your workplace. If your healthcare facility does not offer mentorship programs, ask a senior nurse or someone you look up to if they can informally mentor you. Cultivate a healthy working relationship with your mentor, and remember to act professionally at all times.
Stay healthy and fit
Being a nurse can be physically draining. It is important that you stay fit and healthy so you can perform your tasks efficiently. Make sure to eat complete meals, and stay hydrated throughout your shifts. Stay away from processed foods, as they can make you feel lethargic and sluggish. Aside from eating healthily, you should also engage in regular exercise as staying active can help minimize stress, prevent serious health conditions, and enhance your physical stamina.
To be a highly functional nurse, you need to take care of your emotional and mental well-being. Practicing self-care should be a priority regardless of how hectic your schedule is. It can be as simple as catching up with your loved ones, spending time with nature, or reading a good book. Whatever self-care activity, make sure it is something you can commit to.
Nursing offers a great sense of purpose for those who want to make a positive impact on the lives of others. Remember to follow the above tips to help you succeed in your nursing career.