I want to be real with you.
Skills Lab is more terrifying than it has
any right to be.
Actually, it's not the Skills Lab itself
that is terrifying.
It's just the skills check-off part.
Just that part. And so how can you tackle
those with a little bit less fear?
The best way I found to practice this whole
thing is you want to practice the skills
so much that they literally happen on
autopilot, and you can talk your way through
them so that you have a routine you are
using and following every single time.
And it'll give you something to help keep
track of where you are in the process with
the goal being that you're so familiar with
the tasks at hand, that even if you are
terrified and feeling like you are actively
fighting that bear on the inside,
your body still, like, knows what to do kind
of on its own without too much
instructions. And, honestly, you have a huge
that I didn't have when it comes to
practicing skills because I had to go to
nursing school uphill barefoot both ways.
Lecturio has an amazing course on clinical
skills, where Professor Rhea goes
through explaining how and why things are
done, and then she goes back, and she shows
you a video explaining how to do it again,
but this time on, like, a real human or on
a mannequin. And you can watch it as many
times as you want, download the slides that
give you the step-by-step process, snag a
cheat sheet on the topic, or do whatever
helps you learn the easiest.
Whatever your learning mode is for these
topics, I want you to practice alongside the
video on your imaginary patient until you
are saying the steps first and then double
checking that they're right.
Eventually you won't need to rely on the
video or the checklist at all.
And that's where, you know, like, okay, we
might be ready here.
As you're going through, I also want you to
explain the steps and the movements you are
making with your hands.
This will tie the two pieces together.
So, like, I'm now going to untie the trach
ties, I'm now going to swab it, I'm going to
do this and this and this. And the key here
is practice, practice, practice.
Also, if your school has office hours for
skills lab where you can just drop
in and practice on the mannequin, please use
It's not uncool, I promise.
This is the best and the lowest stress
environment to learn and practice these
skills. And it's the exact setting of where
you're testing, which is awesome for
preparing your brain. So you could literally
set up your thing where you're watching on
Lecturio, and then you're doing it on the
mannequin next to you.
And right before you test out of it, it's a
good idea to probably record yourself with
your phone or have a friend watch you do
these tasks so that they can spot any
mistakes you might make and improve on
anything that you may need, just some last
minute tweaking on.
Remember, you can do this.
You can do hard things.
You can do things like preparing for SIM lab
and skill lab.
Preparing this is honestly kind of boring and
it can be, like, not fun, but I promise
it is worth it when it comes time for
check-off and you've done it so many times
that it just happens magically while inside
you're maybe panicking a little.