Burnout within 1st year possible?

  1. 0
    Hello all,

    I have posted here before but I'm really wanting some advice or support right now and can't figure out who to turn to.

    My story:

    1st when I chose nursing as my major I was pretty sure I wanted to do something in women's health. Long story short my mother passed at the age of 35 with breast cancer and on top of that it was right before I hit puberty...needless to say I have this strong desire to give girls and women education about their bodies because I feel like I never was educated and my mother wasn't either. I know my start is in postpartum or labor and delivery areas before I can go anywhere else.

    I finished nursing school and was 100% sure that I wanted to do women's health after I finished my ob rotation of clinicals. Well what I didn't know is that's despite my hard work and efforts I was not going start where I know I want to be. In school I did not like med-surg. I just never had an interest for it like I did the women's health areas. Well after I graduated in may 12 I was indeed on a med-surg floor. It was the only job I can get and I was pregnant so I was desperate.

    I oriented on my floor from July up until I delivered in oct. Throughout my orientation I dreaded work. But I thought it was because I was pregnant and just exhausted. But since I have returned after a 2 month maternity leave I am miserable. I have cried on the floor after I have told myself that I would not allow that to happen. I have almost lost it in a patients room too. I dread going to work. I've been having frequent headaches and can't seem to get off of my mind how my new career is nothing that I visioned. I feel burned out already and I really haven't even been here that long! I thought it would take years.

    My 6 months is up so I can transfer to another floor, but I can't help but want to be in my specialty of choice. Everything at the hospital I work at is "experience required" or "experience preferred". I have thought about going to the managers directly and telling them how much I want this and my experiences already, I just don't know how appropriate it is.

    I've already talked with my manager about my feelings and I've even talked to experienced nurses. Everyone says its normal but when do you know it's not normal and it's not going to work out? I need advice on the next steps I should take. I love being a nurse, just not in the type of nursing I am in.
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  3. 8 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    I'm not sure how appropriate it would be for you to go to the Ob/Gyn floor and plead your case. I don't have enough experience to say.

    That said, you might look into other aspects of women's health.

    Childbirth educator - International Childbirth Education Association |
    Lactation consultant - IBLCE | Preparing for IBCLC Certification
    Community health nurse (health department or WIC)
    OBGYN office
    Or, given your history, you could look into oncology.

    Right now is not a good time in the profession to pick your specialty - many nurses are begging for jobs, and would consider you lucky to be getting any experience - that said, it's not a time to consider yourself desperate, either. There are always options.
  5. 0
    I am also in a RN job that is not what I wanted and I generally do not enjoy. BUT.... everyday I say to myself "At least I have a nursing Job". We will all eventually get our dream job (Wound care for me but currently in cardiology clinic) but it can take a while getting there. So many new grads are unable to find work for as much as a year after graduating. I say try to find a silver lining in this and try to see how you can link the med-surg floor to what you want to do. This can make it more bareable. Good Luck with finding a job with Womens Health!
  6. 0
    You sound exactly like me! My first job began in March in a women's health clinic. However I knew I wanted to be in a hospital setting, so I kept applying. I finally landed a job in ortho/med-surg and began in October (still working PRN at the clinic). I absolutely hate it. I cry almost every night on my way home from work. I have way too many patients (6 usually) that are all straight from PACU or are very high acuity patients who somehow get placed on my unit(and I have 5 other fresh post ops to attend to). It's awful. Night shift yells at me saying I didn't work hard enough or do enough. Anyhow... my plan, and what you may also want to consider, is speaking with the DON of WIS at your hospital and expressing your interest in cross training. It's not inappropriate to show your passion for the area. My hospital system loves to cross train nurses, and it will help you transition over. Join AWHONN and attend the monthly meetings, network there. Find your hospital's class schedule and become NRP and ACLS certified. Volunteer to hold babies in the NICU. Do whatever you can to meet people in this area and eventually you will get over there. I know it's hard, I'm in the same boat, but we have to try to remember what we are gaining form our current position- you are learning to multitask like no other, you are learning about a lot of disease processes that you will encounter in women's health, and you are learning to collaborate with your team. Good luck and keep us updated on your progress.
  7. 0
    As I was just reading your post I couldn't help but feel some relief that at least I am not alone. Your story is almost identical to my own. I graduated in may, got an interview at an amazing magnet hospital and accepted a job on med-surg because of course the positions in L&D and NICU were long gone. I am miserable in the position I'm in now, come home frequently crying because I had a horrible night and loathing the fact that I can't just be working my dream job. I thought about going to the department heads of these units and proffessing my extreme desire and promise of hard work and loyalty. I don't know if this would actually work or just ruin my chances of ever getting hired there. Have you tried this at all?

    Well, at least take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. For right now that seems to be all we've got.
  8. 1
    Well I haven't tried it. I am afraid like you that showing my interest will routine my chances.

    Although its not making work easier it is better knowing I am not alone. There are many days that I often wonder if I made the right decision going into nursing. Since starting nursing school my anxiety has been through the roof and being a nurse has made it seem worse. I am also having more frequent headaches. I think that I am just going to wait for the next opening in something (even if not ob) that may be suitable for me and run with it. My health is too important.

    In the meantime I have decided to start journaling my feelings about work. It's becoming too much of my life and it should only be a small aspect of my life. I start Saturday but the plan is to sit in my car while it's warming up (I live in Oklahoma and its cold now) and write about my day. Get all my feelings out right then and that is it. I leave work at work. I don't think about it and I don't talk about it. I limit my overtime (1 extra day/month). I feel like I am allowing work to take over too much of my life and that within itself can make work less desirable.

    I have also thought about studying (a WHOLE lot) To be certified in fetal heart monitoring, and there are couple of ways to get certified as a lactation consultant, and also joining awhonn. I am eager to get to ob so I will do anything to get there at this point.
    GrnTea likes this.
  9. 0
    Good plan, tugirl12. Good plan.
  10. 0
    Dont think this is burnout. what is it you dislike so much.? is it the type of nursing? do you still get gyn post ops? i work in med surg and we get gyn post ops frequently . i was extremely miserable for about the first six months. still have shifts i load and feel close to losing it but it has become more tolerable. how ever, i never had dreams of doing another type of nursing. when i hated it and dreaded it everyshift i didnt have any hope that pacu, ed , icu would be any better. at least you have that! good luck !
  11. 0
    Quote from tugirl12
    Well I haven't tried it. I am afraid like you that showing my interest will routine my chances. Although its not making work easier it is better knowing I am not alone. There are many days that I often wonder if I made the right decision going into nursing. Since starting nursing school my anxiety has been through the roof and being a nurse has made it seem worse. I am also having more frequent headaches. I think that I am just going to wait for the next opening in something (even if not ob) that may be suitable for me and run with it. My health is too important. In the meantime I have decided to start journaling my feelings about work. It's becoming too much of my life and it should only be a small aspect of my life. I start Saturday but the plan is to sit in my car while it's warming up (I live in Oklahoma and its cold now) and write about my day. Get all my feelings out right then and that is it. I leave work at work. I don't think about it and I don't talk about it. I limit my overtime (1 extra day/month). I feel like I am allowing work to take over too much of my life and that within itself can make work less desirable. I have also thought about studying (a WHOLE lot) To be certified in fetal heart monitoring, and there are couple of ways to get certified as a lactation consultant, and also joining awhonn. I am eager to get to ob so I will do anything to get there at this point.
    these are good ideas. in the beginning i routinely did 1-3 extra shifts a week!!! that led to burnout quickly! to the point where even $1000 wasnt enough motivation for my regular shifts let alone ot! too much too soon


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