When you begin CNA training, your first and main priority will be to learn everything you can so that you can earn your license and become the best CNA possible. While this is a worthy goal and one that is essential to your career, there are some lessons that CNA training just can’t teach you. However, these lessons are just as important to your development as a CNA and your future career. Let’s take a look at them.
Lessons You Can’t Learn in CNA Training
- Sleeping isn’t optional. You can’t learn if you can’t stay awake. Do your best to get your eight hours.
- It’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed. However, that doesn’t mean you should stay that way. Ask for help if you don’t understand something.
- Ask questions as much as possible.
- Give answers; even if they are wrong, they help you learn.
- Don’t be a fly on the wall. Get in there and get your hands dirty.
- Understand what your fellow CNAs call a “code brown” after CNA training- before you become a part of one.
- After CNA training, don’t ever forget that the individuals you are caring for are human beings with feelings, thoughts, and fears.
- Google isn’t always the best option when you’re seeking information.
- Slow down. You aren’t helping anyone by running yourself ragged.
- You are NEVER going to know all there is to know. Get used to it.
- Nothing will ever get done in one shift after CNA training. Caring for patients is a 24 hour job; you have to rely on your fellow CNAs to make sure every area of patient care is taken care of.
- Learn how to say no.
- Advocate for yourself and your patients.
- Don’t ever walk past a call light- even if it isn’t your patient.
- You may not be a coffee drinker now, but you will be. Make sure to avoid becoming dependent on this stimulant to keep you awake.
- Don’t every underestimate the important of a good pair of shoes. They may cost more, but you’ll appreciate their worth after CNA training.
- Take bathroom breaks. The world won’t end simply because you decided to take five minutes out of your day to pee.
- Just because you don’t use your stethoscope as much as a nurse doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a good one. Invest in a decent stethoscope; it will make taking vitals so much easier.
- Work the night shift at least once after CNA training. You may not like it, but you need to understand how difficult it is so you can respect the shift and those who work it.
- Don’t ever take your bad day out on a patient or on your fellow CNAs for that matter. Learn how to separate your personal life with your CNA career.
- Practice transporting patients. It isn’t as easy as it looks.
- Make sure you know where everything is located on your unit.
- After CNA training, pay attention to the housekeeping staff and their schedule. It can mean the difference between being stocked up on washcloths and having to beg for some from other CNAs.
- Volunteer as often as you can after CNA training.
- Always put the patient first.
Learn as Much as Possible Both In CNA Training and Out
CNA training can prepare you for many parts of your career, but it doesn’t prepare you for everything. Be ready for life as a CNA after CNA training.