This is one of those study challenges in Nursing school. Nursing is a career based off a paramilitary background that requires you to learn time management. Learning to manage your time well while going through Nursing school by being on a schedule will help you better organize all parts of your life which also includes how you study.

Study in smaller chucks such as every 30-50 minutes with a 10 minute break allows your brain time to absorb the information and enhances your recall as well for short term memory. It’s called linkage learning. Every time you learn new material, break it up into smaller parts. Cover section by section with small breaks in between and not forgetting to review the previous sections you just covered before going onto the next. I guarantee you put this study method into effect and your test performance as well as grades will go up.

Cramming in the last 30 minutes before the test will not get you very far in Nursing school like it did in traditional college classes. Always think the long term outcomes of your career as a Nurse. You are a health advocate, educator, and doing a job that often has people’s lives are hanging on the line. One of my best clinical instructors taught me recently “To be a good nurse is to know your skills. To know your skills is to understand how and why you are performing those skills to your particular patient cases. To be knowledgable of your skills is to have complete POWER!”

Something to take into consideration before you decide to cram for your next nursing test.

There are two types of people in this world. There are the realist and there are the dreamers. Realist are the people that stay detail oriented to reality. They must have control over all aspects of their life. It’s like seeing the circus act of the one man that can balance all plates while still riding a unicycle. They want life controlled so much within their grasp where it leaves no room for possibilities or imagination. 

Then….there are the dreamers….

The dreamers are the ones that you always see dozing off in the middle of the day. Blank stare in their eyes & untouched by the reality in front of them. They often float so high in the clouds that they lose sight of the ground below them. Why am I writing this you ask? Because that is what the idea of Nursing has done for me. 

When I first switched my major from Journalism to Nursing, I was once a dreamer. Dreaming that I’ll be working with McDreamy like in Grey’s Anatomy. Or I’ll be Nurse Jackie doing olympic jumps over gurneys to prevent a fall risk patient from ever touching the floor. Then, the struggle of Nursing began for me. 

First, it was the struggle to get my classes. I crashed so many community colleges that I almost lost track of how many school IDs I accumulated just within a three year period to get my pre-requisite classes. Second, getting the scholarly grades to qualify to get into Nursing school. May I mention that somewhere between all those Science classes and GEs, I got involved with a man I shouldn’t have & I had to withdraw from all my classes that semester because I was literally failing them all from how emotionally distraught I became. That already set me back a semester. Third, applying into Nursing schools with a barely 3.0 science GPA & a 3.5 GE GPA. In the world of California Nursing, those GPAs are not going to get you very far. Especially when all nursing schools are impacted with a 2 year waiting list. I was at my original state university for 4 years trying to get the classes I needed & apply into the BSN program. Got denied twice. Fourth, Now being in my Nursing program & failing my first Nursing class.

I’ve fallen so exhausted from all the struggles I’ve had to overcome whether it may be the academic ones or the consequences of my poor decision making. It kind of feels like that Nursing dream I once had is already fading to motivate me to finish strong. Then thoughts such as “Will I ever finish Nursing school?”, “I’m behind everyone I ever started with college with that now has their Nursing license”, “Am I a complete failure?” “Things are not going according to plan.” filled my head. Yes, I’m that chick that thinks about when and how I will finish school, get married, and have my future kids. But then a unexpected person walked back into my life. 

Sometimes my friends never realize it but I live through their life lessons with them too. I have a friend that I reconnected with this year back from my high school days. She was that person back in high school that seemed to have built her perfect world around her. Almost like she was living the chronological orders of life so precisely and perfectly. She finished her education, travelled exotically, teaching spanish, a cheer advisor, about to be married, about to have her first child, & living her biggest dream out as a uprising photographer. It was rather intimidating. Then coming to learn that the utopia life I thought she had fabricated so well together in the past came crashing on her in the present. This whole year so far seemed like I took the emotional roller coaster with her. I have seen, heard, and learned so much about her just by being by her side as I witnessed her losing total control to slowly regaining her true sense of ‘self’ back. 

I mention her because she ties everything together. We do not meet people by accident. One way or another, people are meant to cross our paths for a reason. This friend reminded me what the true definition of success really looks like. That somewhere in that straight line that we thought leads to a successful life actually spirals out of control every now & then. Within success, the strongest people are the ones that love without fault, cry behind closed doors, & fight battles that no one knows about. That how we deal with our struggles is all apart of the journey of being alive & balancing the tug a war between gaining control versus learning to let it go.

 Luckily enough, she allowed me to see different sides of her that gave me all this insight to my own struggles in Nursing and other personal life vendettas. For that I feel blessed in many ways. This friend I hold so much respect & love for because I have & still continue to learn so much from her as I continue to see her triumph over her struggles.

Nursing may not have been the easiest journey so far but I wouldn’t have struggled this far to not continue the climb. I’m just finally learning it’s okay to still be a dreamer but still remain a realist keeping my toes touching the ground when I need to stay grounded to reality.