Exams here, NCPs there. Clinical duty today, drug studies due tomorrow. Anxious of that long quiz you took yesterday, worried of not finishing your assignments today. About to go crazy, well, maybe just a bit..or a bit more. Alright, maybe close to breaking down. You know you were once or you currently are a student nurse when you experienced all these little panic attacks here and there and a few episodes of almost “break downs”. Yes, nursing school ain’t for the weak willed and the faint hearted. It takes a great amount of determination to surpass all these challenges for one to survive nursing school. But wait, how exactly can you stay “sane” while surrounded by dozens of stressors and impending deadlines?
In nursing school, this one’s a must. Not only does this keep you from forgetting what needs to be done, it also prevents you from cramming, thus, also preventing additional stress from happening. Make a mental note on what needs to be done for the day and make sure that these judgments are realistic. Determine what’s more important. Take for example, choosing to study on a Friday night for your finals on Monday knowing that you have 10 chapters to review than partying the night away.
Develop a study schedule and stick with it
You shouldn’t just study the night before the exams, instead, make it a habit to study every night. Try to identify when your best time to study is, determine what studying strategy works best for you. You learn best when reviewing with background music? Then go ahead. You study well in groups? Then arrange group studies. By doing so, you will not only absorb the concepts more effectively, but it will also lessen your workload when the night of the exams comes.
Yes, we understand that due to all the things you have to keep up with, you sometimes forget to eat your lunch, and you stay up till the wee hours of the morning, but also remember that for you to survive in this battlefield called nursing school, you must be healthy enough to fight. Drink plenty of water, try to get as much sleep as possible, and eat fruits and vegetables. As part of a workforce that promotes health, we must also walk our talk and be models of a healthy lifestyle.
Have time with peers
Doesn’t it feel better knowing that you’re not in this race all alone? Find a support system. This will keep you from burning out. Study in groups, not only will it be fun, but it will also help you learn more when discussing nursing concepts with your peers. Stressed? Tell your friends and family what’s going on. Venting it out to others who actually care is freeing and cathartic.
Yes, nursing school may be tough, but you also need to take a break once in a while. Make time to yourself. Have fun. Go out from time to time especially when needed. Make time for doing the things you love, may it be painting, singing, going to interesting places and many more. It is important that you find balance despite all the things you are going through in nursing school. After doing so, you will be fueled enough to go back to the game and fight more determinedly.
Keep your eyes on the goal
There will be times when all you just want to do is quit, when those times come, remember why you started. Live on intention rather than out of habit, eyes on your goal. Always think positively no matter what happens and always believe that no matter how long it takes, you will get there. These will keep you going.
The road to being a nurse is a rough one. But you must always remember that no matter how bumpy this road maybe, when you reach your destination, your journey will always be worth it. The secret is to get going, no matter what. For one of the top qualities that make a good nurse is that he/she is never one to give up, even when the going gets rough. Good luck, future RN!