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Seth412

Not very good on my feet

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EMS teaches us things about ourselves, doesn't it? My employment background is mostly light industrial type stuff. Mostly it's procedure, and once you learn that, there isn't much thinking on your feet. Mostly repetition. So coming into the field, I did not know how well I do under pressure.

Turns out not very well. When I'm put on the spot in a stressful situation, I have a hard time focusing on even simple tasks. I feel I have gotten better since I started, but certainly not up to par with how an EMT should be. Is this something that can be resolved with effort and experience? If so, some tips would be very much appreciated.

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Yes. It'll get better with more experience, exposure and practice.

Are you still a student as your profile indicates? If so, then practice more. Practice with your classmates. Practice with your instructors. If you're working then find someone at work and practice with them. Read. Study. Run through mental scenarios. Visualize a situation. Visualize what you'd do in that situation. Think about situations where you think you had a hard time. Run through it in your head. Think about what you'll do differently next time. It's all just as much a mind game as it is a physical act.

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Take it easy Seth:

Deep cleansing breaths.

What seems very foreign to you as a newbie will become second nature with some time & field experience.

Develop what I call little pull down menus in your brain. Build on these menus every time you see or learn new skills or processes.

Thinking on your feet means not getting rattled and being able to adapt to changing situations.

While every call may seem different to you know it's only because you are new to the business. In reality the majority of calls we deal with are not life threatening in nature and those few that are are not going to change how you do your ABC's and keep your cool.

Street smarts can only be learned with experience & exposure, They can't be taught in class.

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Have you got your anxiety disorder and OCD under control yet?

Yes or no.

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Have you got your anxiety disorder and OCD under control yet?

Yes or no.

First off, thanks for the replies all. Ugh I'm just stressing about the job. There's so much for me to improve on and it just is a bit overwhelming right now. I guess I need reassurance that what I'm experiencing is normal. Maybe the OCD talking :P

But yes, it's as under control as it's going to be. As far as I can tell, my stress reactions have been normal. Some buttferflies going out to the call, and like I said, difficulty focusing, but I think overall I'm adapting well for someone with these types of issues. Long term, I don't know. We'll have to wait and see. I'll let you know how it goes in the following months, to give you all some perspective on how someone with an issue like OCD adapts to this kind of work. So far I can tell you that I do seek reassurance and guidance probably more than the average person.

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I suck at thinking fast. I'm one of those guys who gets into an argument, then 20 minutes later a point that would have won it for me, or a totally new angle of looking at the Isubject finally comes to mind, but it's far too late. Or witty retorts, I just can't do it. i am a slow and methodical thinker. Given time I can dissect a subject, view it from multiple positions, and determine the best course of action and the best way to present it for discussion.

I'd be a good person for a Thinktank.

I've been in EMS for 35 years. As some have already said, given time this stuff will become second nature for you. I can remember how stressful my first ACLS megacode and exams were back in 1993. Today I can walk into a refresher course, write the exam and get into the mid 90s, use my megacode practice time to run through my exam, and leave the class in a couple of hours. It tends to make the docs and nurses in the class a little green with envy too as they struggle through their class. Sometimes I'll stay and tutor my classmates, just for the EMS brownie points.

My biggest problem now is that so much of this stuff has been ingrained into me that it requires thought NOT to do stuff. Last few asystole codes I've run I had to resist the urge to give atropine....and a couple of times I gave it anyways because I didn't have anything else to do.

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I suck at thinking fast. I'm one of those guys who gets into an argument, then 20 minutes later a point that would have won it for me, or a totally new angle of looking at the Isubject finally comes to mind, but it's far too late. Or witty retorts, I just can't do it. i am a slow and methodical thinker. Given time I can dissect a subject, view it from multiple positions, and determine the best course of action and the best way to present it for discussion.

I'd be a good person for a Thinktank.

I've been in EMS for 35 years. As some have already said, given time this stuff will become second nature for you. I can remember how stressful my first ACLS megacode and exams were back in 1993. Today I can walk into a refresher course, write the exam and get into the mid 90s, use my megacode practice time to run through my exam, and leave the class in a couple of hours. It tends to make the docs and nurses in the class a little green with envy too as they struggle through their class. Sometimes I'll stay and tutor my classmates, just for the EMS brownie points.

My biggest problem now is that so much of this stuff has been ingrained into me that it requires thought NOT to do stuff. Last few asystole codes I've run I had to resist the urge to give atropine....and a couple of times I gave it anyways because I didn't have anything else to do.

I'm the exact same way. In a face to face debate, I can't think of anything to say. Over the computer, when I have time to think and formulate my argument, I'm quite a force to be reckoned with. I can approach any issue from a unique and thought provoking standpoint, even if I don't know much about the issue. In person, I draw a blank.

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