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Posted about 1 year ago
6 Nursing Time Management Skills You Should Have
Learning time management skills in nursing lets you work smarter instead of harder. This skill is crucial to survive the day-to-day busy shift. After all, no one wants to see a panicked nurse running around a hospital or doctor’s office because you forgot to fill out your timecard!
An unending stream of patients, clueless doctors, reams of paperwork – these are just a few of the things that most nurses find themselves dealing with during a typical shift. With so much on your plate, how is it possible to get done with everything that people expect of you without killing yourself, or making yourself sick from stress and exhaustion?
Here are some great tips on how nurses can better manage their time to make sure that you finish everything that needs to be done and keep work from piling up.
Obviously this isn’t a tip specific to nurses, but it’s especially important when you are working in a nursing job where forgetting something might negatively impact someone’s health. Each day, write down a list of the things that need to be completed before your shift ends – large and small – and work your way through them one by one. It might take a bit of time out of each day to create this list, but having it there to refer to will help make sure nothing is missed and make your mountain of tasks seem less daunting as you check them off one by one.
Nurses tend to be the type of people who think that they are the only ones who can do a job correctly, so they have trouble trusting others to do anything for them. You need to get over this and learn proper delegation of nursing tasks to other team membe. Try to work on building that trust and slowly offer more responsibility. It might take you more time to teach someone something up front, but in the long run you’ll save yourself lots of headaches.
If you’re the type of person who continually bring in stuff from home and keep it in your locker or work area, you should take a look at what’s there and think about what you really need. It may not seem like a big deal, but always having to paw through your son’s dozen art projects from when he was in kindergarten in order to get to your equipment can really slow you down and eat away at your time.
It’s the easiest thing in the world to put off doing paperwork until the end of the day, week or month. But, doing this just means that you’re going to dread it and rush through it in order to get out of there as quickly as possible. Instead, try to build in time to complete your paperwork during the day and ignore all interruptions. Unless, of course, it’s an emergency.
This is a tough one especially in a medical environment. After all, other doctors, patients, and other nurses are always going to need extra help, and oftentimes it’s for something that’s relatively important. But in order to stay on task and finish what you need to do, it’s important that you learn how to say no to jobs that aren’t really emergencies or pressing matters. You might feel like it’s the end of the world when you refuse one of your coworkers help, but 9 times out of 10, someone will manage to get that job done even if you can’t help out.
There are some days when there’s just too much to do. If you make a list each morning, you’ll probably be able to spot these fun nursing shifts immediately. When you find yourself facing such a day, don’t try to rush through everything just to be “done;” instead, prioritize those things that have to be completed and then work through the nonessential stuff as time allows.
Remember, no person can do everything. Your job is to help people to the best of your ability and be there when they need you. These nursing time management skills can help you be the great nurse everyone wants to be.