It's likely most nurse's somewhere hit burn out. As a new nurse you give it everything.
Nursing school had prepared you that if you do it right things will go well. Life says otherwise. Nursing school is like reading a maternity book and thinking "All set . I'm ready now for labor and I am all set to be a parent ".
The truth is like labor it hurts,you struggle. People are so willing to tell you where you are lacking while you are crushingly aware of your inadequacies. Your best efforts to get organized feel all but impossible. For me the truth was many days I felt like I was drowning. Every other nurse was busy (which they genuinely were ) so no life raft was coming. my way It was painful.
I am sensitive so perhaps worried that I would never be enough. Equally I felt angry. Angry that nursing school had taught me I could become the "perfect nurse" . Now 6mths in I realized psycho social was a complete fairy tale . I felt lied to . I wasn't just mad.I was spitting mad. I was maddest at myself that I had believed the dream of "super nurse "
When my fury burned down and ...it took awhile. I learned to get more organised. I learned what was really a priority.In the first yr of nursing you learn how to handle stress. Gradually I learned I can't meet every need and learn to find a peace in "I HAVE done my best ".
Gradually I softened, when fear and stress could be placed in my back pocket I was able to cope,manage and gradually become skilled. If a small child is learning to walk we don't scream "failure" because their first steps are wobbly. We encourage. Applaud their efforts. It is the same in becoming a nurse.
Two yrs into nsg I was nominated for nurse of the yr for our hospital .I still perhaps get a little over inflated with that one and I do admit to that but also I hopefully you hear in it that the struggle was worth it.
Lastly for me burn out was a product of caring too much. I really wanted to give everything to my pt and internalized it when "I didn't measure up". My desire to do well was at the expense of my own health.Lesson 2 in nursing ...I am part of a team.My job is not "super "nurse it is collectively we serve.
Nursing is physical and emotionally challenging. My nursing practice is heart focused and that compassion has been my root that has sustained me during difficult times.
Nursing is valleys and hills.It is the landscape that we practice in. At least once a yr "I am definitely quitting!!! " It has brought me too incredible joy .
Last edit by echoRNC711 on Oct 6, '12