5 Time Management Tips From Nurses

by A Guest Author

Nursing is a rewarding career, but it can be difficult to juggle all of the tasks you have to complete in a typical shift. Between offering the best care possible and doing charts and paperwork, your head may be spinning by the time you are ready to go home if you are not organized. Learning how to manage your time effectively will help you be successful in your work. It can also make things simpler in your everyday life.

Take Notes and Have a To-Do List

Whether your notes are on paper or an electronic device, it is important to take time at the beginning of each shift to consider everything that needs to be done. Take care of the most important tasks first. Leaving easier, less pressing tasks for the end of the shift will make the transition from work to home much easier. Important tasks also have a higher chance of being done accurately when your mind is fresh at the beginning of the day.

Don’t Wait to Record Important Information

When you walk into a patient’s room, you should record things on their chart immediately. Many beginning nurses make the mistake of writing things down on scrap paper to add to a chart later. Once things are recorded on a patient’s chart, you don’t have to worry about them later.

Don’t Take on More Than You Can Handle

As nurses, patients are priority. There are, of course, always many other tasks that need to be taken care of in a typical day. Try to work with the other nurses on staff with you in any given shift as a team. Instead of trying to be Super(Wo)Men, each of you should choose a task that is your responsibility and stick with it.

Too often one person is stuck carrying a much heavy load than others. Deciding who should do what at the beginning of each shift with team meetings will help everyone avoid headaches later.

Limit Your Time with Each Patient

Deciding how much time you can devote to each patient can be tough. We all have favorites on the job. There are also patients that just want to talk your ear off all day. This is especially true of long-term care situations such as nursing homes. However, it is important to remember to split your time among your group of patients carefully.

A good way to decide what is a fair amount of time per patient is to decide on a set amount of time and then move on. Starting with 10 minutes is a good idea. Let each patient know immediately that you only have a certain amount of time to spend with him or her before you must move on to other patients. If you end up with any time left over at the end of the day, you will be able to spend more time with patients that need additional care.

Organize Your Belongings

This one seems obvious, but when your scrubs, stethoscope, pens and other essentials are not organized neither are you! It is easy for all of these little items to get away from you when you are busy. Make sure to take a few minutes at the end of each shift to ensure you have all the materials you need for the next day. Keep them in the same place to avoid losing anything.


About The Author:

Mandy Marshall is a public health administrator and guest author at www.best-mph-programs.com, a site with guides and resources to help prospective students review top MPH programs.

cc licensed flickr photo shared by katerha

This post was written by A Guest Author

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