02.05 Transition To Practice

Join NURSING.com to watch the full lesson now.

Included In This Lesson

Study Tools



  1. Practice transition
    1. You’re a nurse!
    2. New nursing job
    3. Challenges and overcoming
    4. Tips

Nursing Points


  1. You’re a nurse!
    1. Finished school
    2. Passed NCLEX
  2. New nursing job
    1. Orientation
    2. Preceptorship
    3. On your own
  3. Challenges & overcoming
    1. High acuity patients
      1. Increased workload & stress
        1. Fear of error
        2. Time constraints
      2. Overcoming
        1. Time management skills
        2. Double checking
        3. Teamwork
    2. Communication
      1. Patients & families
        1. High stress
        2. Want answers
      2. Medical personnel
        1. Phone calls to physicians
        2. Feeling like “middle man”
      3. Overcoming
        1. Confidence
        2. Listen before speaking
        3. Review chart before calls to doctor
        4. Open patient chart for answers when talking to family
    3. Self-care
      1. Time management
      2. Sleep
      3. Work-life balance
      4. Overcoming
        1. Follow time management tips
        2. Plan for sleep
        3. Don’t overwork yourself
    4. Bullying
      1. Remain calm
      2. Attempt constructive communication
      3. Talk to manager
  4. Tips
    1. Connect with co-workers
    2. Utilize mentor
    3. Engage in improvement
    4. Engage in residency program

Nursing Concepts

  1. Clinical Judgement
    1. Decisions made regarding patient care
  2. Communication
    1. With patients, families, medical personnel
  3. Teamwork & Collaboration
    1. Making connections
    2. Utilizing teamwork


Hey guys! In this lesson we will discuss practice transition. 

Guys, you did it! You’re a nurse now! You made it through nursing school, and you passed your NCLEX. I’m so proud of you, and you should be so proud of yourself for working so hard and getting to this point! 

So now you found your new nursing job. You made it through the interview and it’s time for orientation and your preceptorship. Check out the lessons on orientation and preceptorship for tips and information. You will eventually be on your own, so let’s explore challenges that you may face and how to overcome them. 

So nobody said nursing was easy, right? You may be caring for high acuity patients that cause increased workload and stress for you. This may make you afraid that you will make errors. You might feel like you don’t have enough time to get everything done. Don’t worry, there are ways to overcome these feelings. First, work on your time management skills. Check out our lesson for tips on time management. Next, you should always double check your work to prevent errors, especially when you’re in a rush. For example, at the end of the shift make sure you completed all your charting on assessments and medications. Lastly, use teamwork. I can’t stress enough the importance of connecting with your coworkers. A great team will work together and help each other in times of need. Don’t feel like you have this where you work? Speak up. If the problem isn’t resolved, maybe it’s time to find a new job. You shouldn’t feel alone. Now let’s move on to communication. 

Communication is a skill that is completely necessary in nursing. You may not be the best at it now, and it may make things difficult for you. Guys, when I started as a nurse, I was terrible at communication. It caused me unnecessary stress. You will be communicating with your patients AND their families often. This can be stressful as they want answers that you may not always have. You will also be communicating with medical personnel regularly. I remember one of the most stressful things as a new nurse was calling a doctor for the patient. In nursing, it is also easy to feel like the middle man as you will communicate with many about your patient. The good news is that there are ways to overcome these issues and things will get easier. FIrst and foremost, be confident. Even if you don’t feel like you should be, do it! Confidence can radiate off of you and put your patients and their families at ease. I always say fake it until you make it. If I don’t know how to do something, I remain confident and look up the process before I get started. A HUGE thing to help with all communication is to listen before speaking. It’s easier to get frustrated and try to get your point across, but sometimes all they need is for you to listen. You don’t have to agree with them to listen. Always review the chart before you call the doctor so you have the information you need. It really helps to keep the chart open, if possible when talking to anyone about a patient. This way if you don’t know something, you say, ‘hold on let me check’. This shows that you care and are capable of finding the information that they want. Okay, now let’s move on to self-care. 

So you’re excited about your new job, and you want to give it your best, maybe even your all. This is great, but please don’t forget about YOU. Time management and sleep can get tricky when you are working a lot of hours or when you work on third shift. Work-life balance is important, but it becomes difficult at times. Make sure you follow your time management tips in the lesson. Plan for sleep! Guys, you NEED sleep. It can make all the difference in your mood. Our lesson on working third shift has some good tips for you. Also, don’t overwork yourself. You DO need a break. Your days off are necessary for you to recharge. Now let’s move on to bullying. 

So bullying can happen anywhere. And no, I don’t mean the type of bullying that you think of in grade school. When I say bullying, I mean when a nurse makes snarky comments to you about your nursing skills. When a nurse is passive aggressive with you, leaving you confused and feeling down. It happens guys, and the reason it happens in nursing is because you are working so closely with so many people of different personalities. You receive and pass on report on patients, making it easy to criticize each other. So what should you do? FIrst, remain calm. It’s easy to get angry and want to explode on them. This won’t help, and honestly it is just exhausting. Try to communicate constructively with them. I admit, this isn’t always possible so follow your gut. You don’t deserve to be subjected to unnecessary stress in your job. Your priority is caring for your patients and keeping them safe. If your efforts aren’t successful, talk to the manager about what’s going on. Don’t feel bad for this guys. You’ve done what you could to fix the problem and you might just need a little help. Alright, now let’s move on to other tips. 

So you’ve already heard me say how important it is to connect with your co-workers, but here it is again. It will make work better for you, I promise. Utilize your mentor! If  you don’t have one, ask someone if they’d be willing to be yours. Engage in improvement on your unit or organization. If your organization has a residency program, engage in it! It’s there to help you transition into practice. 

Alright guys, let’s review the key points about practice transition. You may experience high acuity patients, making it important to use time management, double check, and utilize your team. Good communication with patients, their families, and medical personnel requires listening before speaking and remaining confident. Self-care should be addressed by avoiding overworking and getting sleep. Bullying happens, but you don’t deserve it regardless of the situation, so remain calm, attempt communication, and speak to the manager if your attempts are unsuccessful.