Nursing School

Is there such a thing as overstressed?

Today we took our second nursing test of this class. Since it’s a shortened class, there are only 4 tests. The material was easy enough but like most of these cases, for me anyway, the easier it is, the worse I do. Oh don’t worry, I passed. That’s not a problem. I don’t know why I have more trouble with these easier sections. Maybe it’s this particular teacher? I love her teaching style but her questions always confuse me. It guess it doesn’t matter too much. As we all know, the moral of nursing school is: it doesn’t matter as long as you pass.

This post is more about the overstress that seems to happen. Keep in mind, I am not a bad student and I have never been a bad student. I have failed a class. It killed me, quite honestly, but it was extremely hard and even though I didn’t pass I did learn a lot. As of late, I have been really trying to practice Buddhism every day. Right now, I’m working on peace. We are responsible for our actions but we can’t control others. I focus on staying calm whenever possible and staying positive. Overall, this has been successful but there is a downside. I have had to stay far away from nursing school friends who overstress.

What do I mean by overstressing (btw, I’m pretty sure I made this word up…)? The over analyzing of every single detail in the notes, comparing it to the books and every online resource you can find and then panicking when they don’t all say the same thing. One of the things that I have discovered about being a nurse is that no two people are alike in anything. Every disease process, accident, healing process, etc, will manifest differently in different people. Consequently, there are differences in information, which is less about exactness and more about guidelines. I think that’s one of the things that makes nursing (or any medical profession) so challenging. You have a set of guidelines to follow but you also have to make adjustments for each person based on how they act and react.

The over stress part comes in because of this variation. A lot of people are looking for a straightforward answer to their question. The questions come in lots of forms: when does this happen (meaning age, in the disease process or anything else you can come up with), what happens first (not always a clear cut answer), what order does this happen in (or do symptoms appear in). There are probably dozens more. There are no definitive answers – the answer is usually a range. I think that’s important to remember when you’re trying to study for a test. None of it is cut and dried, done, memorize and move on. All of it is going to make you question, wonder and think.

My mindset may be wrong. Maybe I should be obsessing over these tiny differences. However, I don’t think I’m wrong. I am calmer and happier. I am still doing a good job (even if it’s below the standard I set for myself). Maybe it’s because I failed a class before. That was hard for me. But the world didn’t end, I didn’t die and I still learned a lot even though I had to take it over again (and I learned even more the second time). Clearly, the penalty for failure here is higher. Failing a class means having to wait a year for that class to start again which is not a pleasant thought. I will work a little harder with the next test and hopefully do better. My grade can be pulled up more and it will make me happier. But I won’t stress. A deep breath and a mental reset. On Monday we start a new unit and go at it again.

“The mind is everything. What you think, you become.” (Buddha) Be peace. (Me!) Until next time lovely people!

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