One Day Before Taking The NCLEX Exam.
The day before taking the NCLEX exam can be one filled with anxiety for nurses.
You have studied hard, gone through the study guides and used the flash cards but still feel anxious.
In this article I want us to focus on 5 things you can do the day prior to the exam.
- No Studying
This is the day you put your books down. Realistically, you will always feel that there is stuff you do not know.
If by this time you have not grasped the concepts, then don’t worry yourself unnecessarily because last-minute memorizing will not help.
Trust what you know to be enough to help you pass.
Read something inspirational instead. You will feel at peace and this will put you in the right frame of mind.
- Familiarize Yourself with the Location
Visit the place where you will be taking the exam. Do not leave it to chance and think that you know the area well enough.There might be a road construction taking place and a different route being used to get there.
You do not want to find this out on the day of your exam and arrive late. That will only add to your anxiety and you may not even take the exam.
When you are familiar with a place it adds to your confidence. Since once you know how long it will take you to get there, you can plan accordingly.
- Take Care of Yourself
You are the most important person and nobody will take care of you but yourself.
Take time to relax and do an activity that you enjoy.
Pamper yourself like getting a pedicure or facial. If you love the gym or taking walks then go for it.
Watch an interesting and exciting movie. Avoid depressing movies as they will affect your mood in a negative way.
- Eat Healthy
This is not the day you want to eat your favorite hot curry because your stomach may be growling the next day and make you uncomfortable.
Neither is it the day you get tempted to eat ice cream when you are lactose intolerant. You know this will mess with your stomach.
Eat healthy proteins, fruits and vegetables and drink plenty of water.
- Associate with Positive People
One thing you want to do is avoid talking to other nurses who have not taken the exam.
They may only add to you anxiety by asking you questions that may stress you out.
This is when you want to talk to people who will give you support and encourage you.
The day before taking the NCLEX exam is one that you want to be at your best physically, mentally and emotionally so that you reduce any anxiety that may set in.
How Foreign Trained Nurses Can Pass the NCLEX Exam.
The NCLEX exam is one that all nurses cannot avoid if they intend to be licensed and work in the USA.
As a foreign trained nurse, I wished the Board of Nursing would just look at my experience and tell me it’s OK to practice as an RN.
Unfortunately, it does not work that way. I had to prepare and take the NCLEX.
Thinking about the NCLEX exam made me feel very anxious and nervous.
However I visualized myself having passed the exam and working as a Registered Nurse.
I made positive friends who were willing to give me study tips so that I could succeed.
I started studying by doing test questions from the books. After a while, I felt that doing questions from the CD’s was faster and this helped increase my speed.
When English is a second language, it comes with its own challenges.
The phrasing of the questions was different. I thought I understood the questions but I didn’t.
I solved this problem by doing many NCLEX practice questions. I gave myself a goal of doing 300 questions every week. Sometimes I would not meet the goal, but would be close.
My study partner was from a Spanish-speaking background and really struggling with English. She enrolled in a community college that helped improve her English grammar and vocabulary.
Another advantage of doing several questions was that it increased my speed in answering them. There is no luxury of time when taking the NCLEX exam. You have to read the question quickly and answer accordingly.
Taking tutorials is a good way for foreign trained nurses to prepare for the NCLEX.
Tutorials boosted my confidence in knowing that all the material I had learned in my country was not much different from what nurses learn in the USA. My tutor identified my weaknesses and made me focus on those.
During the exam, one of the things that I cannot over emphasize to foreign trained nurses is to read the question twice and the options twice.
Do not be so slow that you run out of time and miss out on some questions.
However, do not be intimidated by the speed at which some students finish or do the 75 questions.