Top 10 Nursing Lessons From Your Mentors

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.

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Every single nurse experiences a learning curve, and that transition from nursing student to practicing nurse can be a doozy! That’s why you need someone who will be there with a pat on the back when you’re feeling rotten…and who can give it to you straight when you’re messing up.

A great mentor can be a huge asset for any nurse, so we asked our Facebook fans for the best nursing tip they’ve ever learned from their mentors. Read on for their inspiring and very smart answers, then share your own tips in the comments below!


Top 10 nursing lessons you’ve learned from your mentors



Always, ALWAYS treat your patient as you would want your family treated. Try not to judge—just be compassionate. Judgment is for God, care is for nurses.

—Trayce RN



Value your healthcare assistants. If you treat them well, they will go to the end of the world for you.

—Laura E.



If it wasn’t documented, it wasn’t done!

—Jill N.



Remember to LISTEN even when the patient isn’t talking. And like what you do. If you love it—you have found a passion like no other! Be observant and treat your peers with kindness and respect. Being a nurse isn’t a job; it’s a way of life—never forget why you go hungry for hours. Always go home with the knowledge that you did your best and GAVE all you had to give. We will all grow old and need a nurse someday; be the one that people never forget.

—Janann P.



Trust your gut, especially if the patient tells you that something isn’t okay…even if the monitors show otherwise.

—Vera H.



Never miss the chance to hold your patient’s hand and sit and talk awhile.

—Victoria L.



Walk into every room with confidence, even if the president is the patient.

—Erin J.



A sign at my first job: “The day you stop learning is the day you stop nursing.” Kept that saying in my mind ever since then.

—Roberto R.



Stay an hour ahead of yourself because you never know what can happen!

—Cecily C.



Don’t think “I just have to get through this shift!” Think “What can I do in these 12 hours that will make a difference?!”

—Tori H.

Your turn! Share the best advice you received from your nursing mentor in the comments section below.

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.
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1 year ago

Listen look observe assess with your ears eyes heart and touch Nursing is a beautiful skill So much is learned in non verbal communication If you master this you are golden in nursing and life Technology cannot duplicate these skills

Dennis Aschbrenner
2 years ago

Treat the patient, not the equipment. The observant nurse will notice changes that monitors can’t begin to pick up. Know “Your” patient’s normal not what you expect them to be.

3 years ago

Non-compliance is not always just a person being stubborn. Dig a little deeper, look for reasons, then fix them if you can!

3 years ago

Learn the art of true listening. Listening with your eyes, ears, and heart! Make sure the words spoken are matching the things you see. Always pause, let the patient think you are not done listening, in that moment of sometimes awkward silence, more info may come…..the actual truth may come….the question they have been afraid to ask may come…..just stop, make eye contact, and let the awkward pause happen! Learn the power of the pause. It will save you! When a person speaks to you and you begin to formulate a reply, pause. As you leave the pause, think in… Read more »

Lipson E
3 years ago

The first headache you have will prepare you
For rest you be enjoying the end
Of the life.

Jen ML
3 years ago

There will be days when your well of compassion and love run dry. This job can frustrate you to the ends of the earth because many patients come to you terrified that they’re dying, but the second that they’re stable will completely ignore most of the medical advice given by the people caring for them. You’ll end up seeing the same people over and over for the same problems that could’ve been solved with diet changes, exercise, medication compliance, etc. You will be tempted to scream at them “why are you trying to kill your self!?!?!?!” When that happens, take… Read more »

Dwayne More, DNP, RN, CNE
4 years ago

Don’t ever say “It’s not my job!” Caring for patients is everyone’s duty!

4 years ago

I always say: the dumbest question is the one not asked. There are no dumb questions cause nobody knows everything.

4 years ago

The key to a successful career is to love your work, be good at it, and make money at it.

4 years ago

SMILE! smile at your patients. Smile at your co-workers, families, doctors and supervisors. They ALL need a smile. Smile at yourself when you get a break in the bathroom! Smile at what you accomplish. What you learn. Patients so-o-o need to see smiles.

4 years ago

The patient is always right