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Tips for New Graduate Nurses


Graduation season has come and gone, which means one thing: NEW NURSE GRADS!

If you just recently graduated from nursing school and landed your first nursing job, Congratulations! 

I remember when I graduated nursing school and started my new job on a med- surg floor. I was excited, but nervous….really nervous!!

Here are a few tips to keep in mind to prevent feeling overwhelmed and encourage your success:

  • Breathe– Remember, you’re not alone. Every nurse has started from the beginning. We all know what it’s like and it will get better.


  • Protect Your Mind– What are you looking at during your work breaks and time off? Are you browsing pictures on Instagram that encourage comparison, envy, irritation, sadness, or FOMO? Take inventory of what you allow into your emotional headspace, so that you can be the best nurse (and person) possible. P.S. This is a life-changing tip for anyone!


  • Don’t Overcommit- Your first year, as a new nurse, will likely be intense. You are learning so many new concepts, so mental focus is a non-negotiable. Avoid working extra shifts that spread you too thin OR committing to personal engagements, if you know you need a little R&R. It’s important to learn how to say “no.”


  • Do Homework– Just because school is out, doesn’t mean you’re done learning. In the life of a nurse, there is always something new to learn. If you don’t have time to look it up at work, take time to look it up when you get home. 


  • Be Honest About What You Don’t Know– As a health professional, it’s not safe to pretend like you know something that you don’t. Ask for help- for your patients safety and for your skills and abilities as a nurse!


  • Take Care of Yourself – 12 hour shifts are exhausting. Remember to prioritize time for self care, exercise, healthy meals, sleep, time with family/friends outside of work.


Now, I have to know! Are you a new nurse grad?!