Welcome to Episode 28 of Navigating Nursing School with Your Nursing Tutor. Today you’ll be hearing from Nurse Erica Rodriguez, a new grad Labor & Delivery nurse and the founder of “Nursing Student Support Group” on Facebook, which has over THIRTY thousand members.
Erica will be sharing her number 1 habit that you should be doing NOW, as a new student, to keep your overwhelm to a minimum, AND make it a lot easier to transition from nursing student to “real life nurse” later on after graduation.
Some links below may be referral links…purchases made from referral links don’t cost you any extra, but may provide a commission that helps support Your Nursing Tutor’s free content, so thank you!
Links from Episode 28:
Erica’s YouTube Channel: https://youtube.com/c/RodcastProductionsTV
Erica’s Instagram: https://instagram.com/erica_living_rnlife
Erica’s Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1768788903242255/
VIP Tutoring Membership: www.YourNursingTutor.com/VIP
Transcript for Episode 28
But before Erica shares her tip, I wanted to let you know that this is the third in a series of expert tips for new nursing students. Although honestly, many of the tips could be used at ANY point in your nursing career, not just as a student. I’ve been learning so much from them that I wished I had already known, even though I’ve personally been a nurse for over 13 years now.
So make sure that you subscribe to the podcast to be notified as each new tip is published, and go back to listen to the beginning of the series so that you don’t miss anything important.
And by the way, if you don’t already know MY story, I’m Nicole Whitworth, the founder of Your Nursing Tutor. I started college thinking I was going to get a PhD in Clinical Psychology, but life had other plans. I stopped after earning my Masters when I met and married my husband. Later on, I returned to school to earn my BSN and become a Registered Nurse.
Now I’m also a professional nursing tutor with over 12+ years of experience helping nursing students learn to study in a way that teaches you to think like a nurse WHILE you’re still in nursing school, so that you can spend less time studying, get better grades, and feel confident when it’s time to take NCLEX and start your first nursing job.
Now let me introduce you to my guest expert for today, Nurse Erica Rodriguez.
Erica went to nursing school as a non-traditional student, being a busy Mom to 3 kids AND married to her amazing husband. After graduating, she was immediately hired onto a competitive Labor & Delivery unit, where she works night-shift, and she recently reached her 1-year anniversary as a nurse.
While in school, Erica started a Facebook Group called “Nursing Student Support Group”, which was meant to be a resource for herself and her nursing school friends. Since then, it has exploded and now has over 30,000 members. In fact, that’s how I first found Erica and got to know her.
Erica is also active on YouTube and Instagram, where she talks about life, nursing, and full-figured fashion.
Here is Erica’s tip today:
“Hi, my name is Erica, and I’m a new grad labor and delivery nurse. Thank you so much, Nicole for inviting me to give you my number one student nurse tip.
So what is my tip? My tip is to be consistent. So when I mean consistent, I mean being consistent in all facets of your life. Because nursing school is difficult, and it’s very time consuming. And sometimes we get overwhelmed. And by being consistent in the things in which we plan and try to prioritize is super important. And being consistent is really going to help you to sort things out in a manner that makes sense.
So, consistency in school. Time management. Studying time…what you’re going to study, when you’re going to study for how long you’re going to study. If you’re going to do study groups, homework, discussion boards, care plans.
Planning out these things is really going to help you. And by doing this semester, over semester, over semester is going to carry on into the baby nurse becoming a real nurse, and being consistent in your workflow.
If you can’t be consistent in your workflow as a new nurse, you’re going to have a very difficult time transitioning. So by implementing consistency now, it’s really going to help you transition from nursing student to real life nurse and really make you successful in the long haul of being in the medical field.
It’s also super important to carry consistency into your regular life. Planning out meal planning, when you’re going to do laundry, when you’re going to sleep, when you’re going to eat, when you’re going to work out, when you’re going to carve time for family and just rest and relaxation. Super important to take note that you really need to recharge and be consistent with it because we all burn out, and nurse burnout is real. And the only way to really battle that is by being consistent in your time management.
So I hope these tips helped you and I wish you all the luck and much success.”
Thank you, Erica, for taking the time to contribute that great tip on consistency and time management.
Now I’d like to add a few thoughts of my own about Erica’s tips that she shared today.
First, time management is sooo important in nursing school. I think that everybody who looks at their nursing school syllabus for the first time definitely has an “Oh crap, what did I get myself into” moment when you see all the reading and assignments that you’re responsible for learning, sometimes (…often… ) even before you’ve ever had your first lecture.
And this can be even more true when you’re a non-traditional student, and have so many additional responsibilities to schedule in. Like taking care of kids, spending time with your spouse, or even just working. And don’t forget the basic things like meal prep, doing laundry, sleeping, and (believe it or not) personal hygiene, as finding time to shower can quickly become overwhelming in nursing school, too.
But Erica is married with 3 kids, and she was married with 3 kids when she went through nursing school. Unlike me, I went to nursing school before I had kids. While I WAS married, Mr Your Nursing Tutor, my husband, was in the military at the time so he was frequently gone. So I didn’t have as many demands on my time outside of nursing school.
And yet I STILL remember how I failed my very first quiz in Fundamentals of nursing, which was my first real nursing class. It was a huge wake-up call for me, because I had always done well in school prior to that. But it’s also what made me realize that the way I had been studying and doing things to successfully get into nursing school were NOT the same things that were going to get me successfully through nursing school.
And that really motivated me to research and figure out what I needed to do differently than all the other nursing students were doing, and even differently than what my nursing school and my nursing professors were telling me to do, because a lot of times their advice was just to “study harder and it will eventually click!” But I HAD been “studying harder” and I still failed my first nursing school quiz, so I knew there had to be a better way, and I wasn’t willing to risk my nursing school dreams by just “waiting to see” if things would eventually click for me BEFORE or AFTER I failed another exam.
Which is how I ended up creating a new study system that mimics the way that experienced nurses think. Using it to study, I was quickly able to improve my critical thinking, and begin “thinking like nurse” so that I never failed another nursing quiz or exam again. In fact, I started teaching some of my classmates how to use this study system, and when my professors started noticing how much it was helping, my nursing school actually hired me as the their official nursing school tutor…even though I was still finishing my very first semester.
And that’s what got me started down the path to becoming a professional nursing tutor years later. Because after working with so many tutoring students over the years, I improved and refined my original study system until I created the Silver Bullet Study System that I use today. And now I teach my VIP Tutoring Membership students how to use it so that THEY can improve their critical thinking skills, learn to think like a nurse, and make sure that everything “clicks” for THEM before they fail a class…all without having to (quote) “study hard”. They just study smarter and more strategically, instead. And if you want more information about the Silver Bullet Study System, you can get it at www.YourNursingTutor.com/vip
But all that to say, that one of the reasons that the Silver Bullet Study System works so well is that there is built-in consistency for the types of things that you study day by day. Just like Erica said about how important it is to be consistent with everything you do during nursing school, it’s absolutely true of studying as well. You need to be consistent with how you approach the nursing information, with how and what you’re reviewing, and with how you are learning to analyze and apply that information into new situations so that you can do well on exams AND in clinical situations.
Having a consistent study routine, and really a consistent routine for your LIFE is also important because it takes away some of the decision fatigue. Decision fatigue is a real thing, and it happens when you have so many decisions that you just get tired of deciding…so you avoid it and scroll through Facebook or watch Netflix or something else instead. But of course that last part is not going to make things any easier for you in the long run.
So another benefit of being consistent, like Erica suggested, is that you don’t have to make as many decisions. Because you kind of “pre-decide” what you are going to do. A lot of the study decisions are built into the Silver Bullet Study System for you. And I actually also have a really good resource available to help you figure out a consistent plan for Time Management in my VIP Tutoring Membership, because the first step to being consistent is deciding what you need to be consistent ON. So I can also help you with that in the VIP Tutoring Membership if you want some help with it.
Okay, I think that about wraps that up. Now remember that if you want to learn more about Erica Rodriguez and what she does as a new grad L&D nurse, or if you want to follow her on YouTube or Instagram, you can find all her links near the top of this page. And that’s also where you can find the link to her very active Facebook Group, “Nursing School Support Group”, which I definitely encourage you to join if you are on Facebook.
As I mentioned earlier, Erica’s tip is the third in a series of tips for new nursing students from over 2 dozen different experts…and in our next episode, Nurse Laura from “Nurse It Like You Mean It” on Instagram, will be joining me to offer her best strategy for how to self-evaluate whether you’re doing well enough in clinicals so that you don’t have to suffer with a lack of confidence…and this same strategy can be used when you’re a new grad at your first nursing job, too.
So if you’d like to hear her tip along with other essential advice from experienced nurses and nursing students who have been in your shoes (and lived to tell the tale), then make sure to subscribe to this podcast to be notified when the next episode in this series goes live.
And while you’re subscribing, if you liked today’s tip and are looking forward to the upcoming tips as well, please leave a rating and review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app to let me know! A 5-Star review with 1-2 sentences of your honest opinion goes a looong way towards helping other nursing students find these tips, AS WELL AS motivating me to create even more useful resources like this for you in the future.
One last thing…remember that whether you’d like some assistance with your Time Management, or maybe just some accountability so that YOU can be more consistent with how you study or even when you sleep, then I invite you to test out the Your Nursing Tutor VIP Tutoring Membership for free. It’s an affordable way to get expert guidance on how to tackle nursing school in a way that will have you feeling confident instead of stressed, and comes with the curated resources you need to help with your personal nursing school challenges. It also includes live tutoring sessions, trainings, and a private Facebook group so that you always have a trusted resource for help and support. That means, no more getting sucked into the “google black hole” just to TRY to find a simple answer to each of your nursing school questions. You can get more information or sign-up for a free trial at www.YourNursingTutor.com/vip
Until next time, good luck on your nursing journey!
Nicole Whitworth is the founder of Your Nursing Tutor. She has a BSN and an MA in Clinical Psychology, and has been a professional nursing tutor for over 12+ years. Nicole specializes in getting nursing students through school confidently and calmly so that everything finally “clicks”. She is also the creator of the Silver Bullet Study System, an easy-to-follow study method that automatically trains your brain to become a nurse at the same time that you study for your normal nursing classes.