how would you know the kind of speciality in nursing you're meant for

  1. I am a new nurse and I realized that I have no heart for geriatric nursing. I am thinking of how nurses realize their weaknesses and strengths and how they decide to go and remain in the speciality of practice. I am thinking of OR-Surgery and/or neonatal-pedia. Right now, I am sure that I don't have enough heart for geria
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   sirI
    I knew immediately that geriatrics was not my forte'.

    And, I literally hated OB upon graduation. I only wanted OR. So, after working for a very short while in OR, I moved back home. The only job available at one particular hospital was in OB. So, took that just to have a job.

    I later went on to become an OB-GYN NP. I fell in love with it.

    Later, I realized that not only did I not care for geriatrics; I did not care for peds either. I became FNP for better marketability, but I still do not like the opposite ends of the healthcare spectrum. ED is another favorite part. And, education is my real love.

    It takes a little troubleshooting. Just work were you feel led and see what transpires.
  4. by   DudeNurseRN
    Quote from midoc_620
    I am a new nurse and I realized that I have no heart for geriatric nursing. I am thinking of how nurses realize their weaknesses and strengths and how they decide to go and remain in the speciality of practice. I am thinking of OR-Surgery and/or neonatal-pedia. Right now, I am sure that I don't have enough heart for geria
    I don't blame ya. I used to work in Geriatric nursing as well, and I had to admit to myself that it wasn't my cup of tea either.

    What was hard for me was dealing with a high level of dementia patients, and realizing that though the care I was giving mattered, these patients still weren't going to know who I was or who their family members were at the end of the day.

    I had my moment of clarity about 7 months in where I realized that
    A person gives so much of themselves in nursing that they shouldn't work in an area where it doesn't make them feel good (at least somedays) at the end of the day. You gotta give until it feels good, not give till it hurts. And that was how I got into my current field of nursing which I am new at, but still very much enjoy.
  5. by   RNsRWe
    Trial and error. And spending time around more experienced nurses who HAVE tried other areas, and getting feedback from them.

    Goodluck!
  6. by   traumaRUs
    Sometimes we come into our niche in nursing in a roundabout way. For me, I started in med-surg. Liked it but hated rotating shifts - absolutely crazy. Then I did ICU, loved it much. However, when we moved, the ICU wasn't a friendly environment. However, there was an ER job open so I took it. Absolutely loved it - that was my passion. Then...I became an APN. My first job was in nephrology caring for dialysis patients. Like the patients and the job but after a few months I knew I couldn't keep doing the same thing over and over.

    My new job will be in palliative care - helping pts and families make end of life decisions as well as quality of life decisions. Will be interesting, in a hospital where I will be able to do more than one thing.
  7. by   gt4everpn
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    yeah, i'm an lpn in geriatrics and it isn't my cup of tea either, but i needed a job and i love nursing. i'm so anxious to get into critical care i could just run into an icu now and start learning stuff, but i'm an lpn, can't wait to get that rn!!
  8. by   llg
    "How" people figure it out is usually by paying close attention to their reactions to the experiences they have while in school or when imagining a career in that field. While that may sound trite, it really involves a complex set of personal skills.
    The ability to be sensitive to your own feelings and to accurately assess your own preferences and skills is called "self-awareness" and it is a skill that some people have more than others -- and a skill that can be learned through practice.

    How did you feel when you cared for geriatric patients while you were a student? Did you really enjoy it? Is that why you chose to work in that field? If you didn't enjoy it, why did you choose to work in geriatrics? If you did enjoy it, what has changed?

    Reflect back on your other nursing experiences? Which ones did you enjoy the most? Which ones gave you a sense of inner satisfaction that would help you cope with difficult times and career challenges? Did you encounter any areas in which you seem to have the right skills to do a good job? Were there other fields that just didn't seem to fit your natural skills and preferences?

    Why did you become a nurse in the first place? When you envisioned your nursing career ... what types of work did you imagine yourself doing that made you feel good inside? etc. etc. etc.

    By reflecting on yourself and your past experiences by asking yourself these types of questions, you begin to learn about yourself and discover who you are as a nurse. You begin to identify those aspects of the nursing profession that appeal to most and/or provide the best fit for you. Then you try a few things and see how it works ... keep assessing yourself and learning more about yourself ... and finding what works best for you.

    Remember too ... that sometimes ... the "perfect fit" doesn't exist. Or, at least it may not be possibile at the moment. Sometimes, the best we can do is to find a "reasonable fit" and then make the best of it by learning how to cope with the negative aspects while we make the most of the positive aspects. In fact, that's how most of us get through life on a daily basis. We make the best of what we can find that is reasonable, but not perfect.
  9. by   caliotter3
    Most nurses have to move around some and try different areas before they find their own little spot. That is one of the advantages of nursing. There are so many diverse areas to work in. Rarely does someone know right off what they want, and go there, and stick to it. Besides, moving around a little keeps you from getting planted and stagnant in one spot. Good luck with your choices.
  10. by   marikat534
    i found my joy in psych nursing and plan to one day step back into it. look at your hobbies, age-groups you like, etc. that can indicate what sorta of nursing to look into. good luck!
  11. by   cousx2
    I always knew I wanted to work in an ED. I get bored easily, I like the adrenaline, and I like seeing different things--ED suited me. HOWEVER.... I spent 120 hours in the ICU last semester of nursing school. Before I started I thought I would be bored and that I wouldn't like it. I was so wrong. I loved it too, and surprised myself by being a good ICU nurse. So now I know, when I get burnt out from the ER, I'll give the ICU a try.

    Sometimes you know, but keep an open mind. Try something--you just might like it. And if you don't, try something else. Eventually, you'll find your niche. Usually your gut instinct is right but if isn't, give something a try that you never thought you would like.
  12. by   underpaidrn
    I guess I am on the other end of the spectrum. I love geriatrics. I started out in Oncology but hate being in a hospital. Working in home health, I get to do geriatrics and oncology at the same time. Absolutely hate OB, GYN, PEDS. Would rather say "Welcome to Wal-Mart" than work on any of those floors. I have been an EMT on and off since 1974, so trauma and such doesn't fascinate me too much anymore. Love being in home health - wide variety of patients.

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