Are your scared to death of your first day of nursing school? Does the mere thought of clinical skills or care plans make you sick to your stomach? If so, you certainly aren’t alone.
First Day of Nursing School
Feeling scared, nervous, or anxious for your first day of nursing school is a perfectly normal reaction for most people. Students often question whether they’ll have what it takes to complete the program and then pass the dreaded NCLEX exam.
I can still remember my first day of nursing school. I had attended an orientation meeting about two weeks prior nursing school. During the orientation, the speaker told us to look to our right and to our left. Then they said, “Half of the people in this room probably won’t make it through the program.”
Yikes! I was petrified. I remember asking my husband, “What have I gotten myself into? Am I smart enough for this?”
Maybe some of you new nursing students are also dreading your first day of nursing school. If so, I’ll give you some tips that can help you.
Tip #1: Remember that Most Other Students Feel the Same Way
Remember that if you’re nervous, the other students are probably also nervous. Some are more vocal about it than others, but it is perfectly natural to feel some anxiety or nervousness about your first day of nursing school.
Checking funny memes or posts on social media may help you see that everyone else feels the same way about it. I recommend looking at some of the posts of others, because you’ll know that you aren’t alone.
It’s easy to psych yourself out over it, but just know that everyone is nervous.
Tip #2: Remember that Nursing School Happens One Day at a Time
You won’t be required to complete the entire program overnight. Instead, you’ll have the entire length of the program to finish nursing school. You have to take everything one day at a time, one assignment at a time, one clinical skill at a time, etc.
It’s a lot like running a race. When you have to run a marathon, you take one step at a time, run one mile at a time, etc. Before you know it, the race will be over.
If you sit and think of all the assignments you’ll have to do, or of all of the skills you’ll have to learn, you’ll likely become overwhelmed. Instead, try to take the projects as they come, and don’t think too far ahead.
You have exactly enough energy to accomplish what you need to accomplish for today. Worrying about tomorrow only exhausts the energy you have today.
Tip #3: Reflect on Times When You’ve Felt the Same Way, Yet You Overcame it
Try to remember a time when you felt really nervous or scared, yet you were able to overcome it. For example, maybe you were just as nervous for your first day of high school, yet everything worked out just fine.
Nursing school is the same way. It can seem really scary, but after a few years, you’ll be through it. You’ll look back on nursing school in the same way you now look back on high school and other similar seasons in your life.
Know that you can do this. You can get through nursing school and go on to work as a nurse.
Tip #4: Push Those Negative Thoughts Out of Your Head
When you think of all of the scenarios of what could go wrong, or worry about being able to pass your classes, it causes a lot of stress and anxiety. Instead, you have to learn to push those thoughts out of your head.
Busy yourself by going shopping, hanging out with friends, engaging in church activities, or watching some good movies. That way, you won’t allow those feelings to fester and boil over.
I Hope Your First Day is Awesome!
Nursing school will be over before you know it. Go into it with a positive mindset, and don’t stress yourself out. You’ll learn the skills and nursing knowledge one day at a time, and you’re going to do great.
I hope you all have a blessed experience on your first day of nursing school!