5 Tips to rock your First day of work as a Nurse

Cindy is feeling both anxious and excited. Tomorrow is finally “the day”. She has worked hard for this in so long. She’s spent sleepless nights burning the midnight candle, endured toxic duty shifts, skipped party nights just to prepare for next week’s return demonstration and braved all her demons just to win this battle. Finally, she has reached her goal. Finally, she’s now a nurse and tomorrow’s her first day of work.

She knows she should be excited. Well, she is, except that she is more nervous than excited. She doesn’t know how everything will work out, will it go smoothly like how it sometimes did in nursing school, or will reality shock her? Questions continue boggling her mind as she thinks about tomorrow. What should she do now? How will she be able to survive her first day?

86114-fullGet a good night’s sleep

You might know already that there’s so much to learn even on your first day at work. So to better absorb them, you need to have an alert mind. How will you be able to learn if you’re trying hard not to fall asleep instead of focusing on your work? Don’t stress yourself too much the night before your first day, instead, go to bed earlier than usual, if necessary, to get your 8 hours in. Also, don’t forget to eat breakfast before going to work. You’ll need all the energy you can get.

Prepare everything

The clinical area is a battlefield and you need to be prepared if you’re going to war. Before heading to bed the night before, make time to lay out the clothes you are going to wear, needed documents or paperwork, as well as your lunch for your first big day. This will not only help you to sleep better and not cram in the morning, but it will also help you from forgetting to bring some things.

Study in advance

It’s not only materials, documents, food and clothes you need to prepare beforehand. You also need to come in mentally prepared. Do some advanced reading on some things you find vague. Do some research on the usual things one can encounter in the clinical area such as common cases and procedures. That way, you won’t go to work clueless and may even spend time wiser by learning more instead of fumbling on things that you should already know of.

Arrive early

Never arrive on your first day at work late. Not only will it stress you out, but it will also leave a negative impression about you by your colleagues as well as superiors. More importantly, it makes you look unprofessional. It’s best that you become familiar with the route and arrive at least 15 minutes early. Take care of some things that need to be done beforehand.


Take a deep breath and calm yourself down. You’ve already come this far, remember everything you did just to achieve this? Now you’re here. You deserve a pat on the back. Relax and enjoy this moment of victory. But don’t overdo it, remember, it’s not yet the end of the line but the beginning of another journey. Pause and enjoy for a while, but never stop from striving to be the best nurse that you can be.

Liane Clores, RN MAN

Currently an Intensive Care Unit nurse, pursuing a degree in Master of Arts in Nursing Major in Nursing Service Administration. Has been a contributor of Student Nurses Quarterly, Vox Populi, The Hillside Echo and the Voice of Nightingale publications. Other experience include: Medical-Surgical, Pediatric, Obstetric, Emergency and Recovery Room Nursing.

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