Becoming a nurse is much more than just getting a degree. Being a nurse requires specific skills to care for the best possible patients. Among them are genuine care, careful feeding, the ability to teach, being aware of the patient’s state of health, and being a good communicator. A good nurse has all these skills and considers them essential for daily work. Such skills can be developed before starting a nursing career, but you may not know if you really have them until you are in the profession.
Preparing to be a good professional nurse
- Be a critical thinker
Nursing is like a game of chess. It is a complex work in which it is necessary to foresee some movements. It is necessary to be able to assess a patient to know his medical needs while taking into account multiple factors and possible consequences.
Critical thinking is the process by which you see the situation, analyze what is happening, and ask what you don’t know. The process can be divided into five stages:
- Identify the objective or problem.
- Review and diagnose the objective or problem. What information do you have about the problem? Based on the information you have, what would be the best solution?
- Explore the options. Think about what solutions would be appropriate, as well as by whom and how they would be achieved.
- Be sure to act on the solution. Do what needs to be done.
- Reflect on success or failure. What worked and what didn’t work that well? How can you do better or differently next time? How to learn from the experience
2. Develop effective communication skills
Nurses need to be able to communicate with patients to understand how they feel and what their concerns are. Efficient communication is one in which you can hear when someone is speaking, in addition to being able to speak to others (patient, doctor, other nurses, patient’s family, etc.) with clarity and conciseness. As a nurse usually takes a lot of notes, whether, on paper or computers, efficient communication is also necessary for writing, as you may not be there in person to explain what you meant.
- Don’t forget that you will be dealing with different nationalities, including people who may not speak the same language as you. Find out what services are available to help communicate with patients. Does the team have interpreters? Are you aware of any cultural beliefs or practices that may interfere with the patient’s health?
- A good nurse needs to listen to the doctor’s instructions and execute them quickly without needing extra clarification for each of the details. To do this, you need to be able to listen to the doctor in a hectic and hectic environment while doing something else. On the other hand, do not hesitate to ask questions to clarify something if necessary. Doctors, like nurses, need to communicate effectively. If the statement is not clear enough, continue to ask questions.
- An exceptional nurse not only listens and executes instructions but also puts herself in the patient’s shoes. With excellent listening skills, you will develop empathy for patients in order to understand how they feel and what they want. You also need to understand that patients may feel a little ashamed of asking questions or asking the doctor for something; you may need to speak for your patients. Ask the person to write down the questions they want to be answered on a piece of paper, and if they are unable to ask, do it yourself.
3. Pay attention to the details.
You have to be aware of things big and small. When dealing with a patient, even the slightest abnormality or symptom can be serious. Because of this, you need to always be attentive to ensure that all patients are treated exactly the way they need it, and when they need it.
Being attentive to details and being well organized is not the same thing, but they have a lot to do. It is easier to pay attention to details when it is organized.
Furthermore, paying attention to details also means being accurate. In the medical field, you cannot guess or calculate more or less the amount of medicine you will give to a patient. The patient’s life may depend on its accuracy.
Pay attention to everything. If you get distracted or allow your mind to lose focus, you are likely to forget something important. Focus on work all the time, as every detail about patient care is very important.
4. Always organize yourself proficiently
Nurses, especially those who work in hospitals, need to deal with several patients at the same time. Each patient has special needs and knowing them is important to their well-being. Patients also have their own personalities and emotional needs. As a nurse, you need to be able to organize yourself to always know who each patient is, what their treatment is, and what special care, among other things. This will help them to feel better both physically and emotionally. Being able to organize efficiently means knowing how to do the following things when necessary
- Learn to say no. As much as you may not be able to say no very often at work, you can certainly do so in your personal life. Sometimes avoiding the things you don’t want to do will reduce your overall stress level and help you to be more focused when you are working.
- Find balance in life. There is something called caregiver wear. Before accepting an extra shift, ask yourself: what are the benefits, and what is the cost? If the cost is the loss of health, sleep, or fun, the extra money is not worth it.
- Ask for help. If you are new to nursing, you will need to ask for help. Don’t be afraid or ashamed of it. After asking for help, you will move on and you will be able to carry out the task efficiently next time.
- Organize priorities. Being organized means being able to organize activities in priority order and knowing which ones are more important or which are closer to the deadline.
- Use time wisely. Think of all the things you need to do and do them efficiently. If you need to go to the warehouse or warehouse to get something, think about everything you need to bring from there to make just one trip. Do not waste your time on repetitive and unnecessary tasks.
- Maintain fitness.
Most nurses stand the entire shift, which can result in 12 or more hours of standing. Nurses may also have to restrain patients, help them walk from place to place, hold them, move them between beds and stretchers, among other activities that require physical effort. If you do not have the necessary physical fitness for the job, you will probably feel a lot of pain at the end of the shift.
Prioritize your health: how can you give health advice if you don’t take care of your own?
Physical conditioning is not just being able to perform physical activities. It involves running them over and over again.
A nurse can wear a lab coat and comfortable shoes. There is nothing worse than standing for 12 hours wearing shoes that hurt your feet.
- Think and react quickly.
The medical area is not the type where you can sit and relax to “see what happens”. As a nurse, there will be many cases where you will notice something and need to react quickly. You will not always have the chance to stop everything, evaluate all options, and discuss with another nurse what to do. Sometimes it will be necessary to act. Remember:
- Being able to think and act quickly comes naturally with experience and gaining confidence. The more experience and confidence you gain, the greater your ability to react quickly.
- Thinking and reacting quickly also includes knowing when to ask for help as quickly as possible. Do not worry if you think you are overreacting or think that someone will think you are bad for being bothered. The patient’s well-being is always the most important thing, so act quickly when he is in danger.
- Reacting quickly does not mean skipping critical thinking. It means going through the critical thinking process quickly and making a decision immediately.
Developing these tips while you are still a student will go a long way in making you a professional nurse. Learn to practice them while you are still studying. Besides, if you need any help in your nursing assignments, do not hesitate to send us an online nursing homework help request if you consider your nursing assignments done for you.