Am I going to regret being a nurse? - page 2

I am about to start nursing school next semester and Im a little worried. I've heard nurses have GREAT communication skills and just LOVE to be around people. ok so here is my story: I work at a retail store as a sales... Read More

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    Your comfort level with small talk while performing routine activities will come with time. Nursing school will help you to know what type of communication is considered therapeutic, and clinicals will help you to become more comfortable using these skills. I think that if you choose the area of nusing that best suits you, you can enjoy your job!

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    You'll regret becoming a nurse- but you'll love it more! The few times I've wondered 'why the heck did I get myself into this mess', my reply to my stressed-self is 'because you love this mess'. The good greatly outweighs the bad, IMO.

    Communication in nursing is nothing like communication for the rest of the world. I personally dislike phones, crowds of people, and on some days, humanity in general. I like people on an individual basis, though. I'm uneasy speaking to strangers in person but I have no problem with it at work. It's just different, and not an easy thing to explain.

    At any rate, the best communication skill a nurse can have is the abitity to listen. The most difficult conversation to have in the 'real world' is not easy- people want input. In nursing, the same situation is easy because usually the pt just wants someone to listen.

    Listening is an underappreciated talent.
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    Okay, so that'll be one knee replacement...and can I interest you in an appendectomy while you're here?

    Retail experience would probably be helpful to a prospective nurse--presumably, you've learned how not to glare at people and mutter under your breath, so that's a big plus. Being a good listener is definitely an important skill. But it will also be important to learn to be assertive. Sometimes I have to pause outside the room and remind myself, "Be the nurse." Somebody has to, and who is more qualified. Of course, the first time I invoked that mantra, the patient turned out to be a retired 30 yr nurse, so when I went in and laid down the law, she tossed me out on my ear. But we learn from these moments.

    If you like being a PCA, you'll probably like being a nurse. Unfortunately, you may not get as much time to listen to patients' stories, but any time you can find will be appreciated. Sometimes I leave my chattiest patients' assessments for last. And looking at pictures of grandchildren can be charted as a neuro check. Sometimes you give the patient the time they need whether you can spare it or not, and finish your charting after report. Who would blame you if you got behind because you were doing CPR? And sometimes hand-holding is just as important as CPR.

    Good luck.

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