Burnout or what

  1. [font="verdana"]
    i have been in nursing for 18 years. all in critical care or emergency dept. i feel like every ounce of compassion and strength i have has been sapped. every day it seems there is more and more the hospital wants from me. no real break time. calls are forwarded to the break room during my lunch. patients becoming more cruel and demanding. the other day one of my patients felt i needed to be at the bedside all the time. at visiting time i was sitting at a desk outside my pts rooms charting on paper and the computer portion. i talked to the family outside of the pt room updated asked if they had any questions said i would be here if any came up. they talked to the pt. then i am suppose to be cruel and careless for not being with her all the time and just not just "sitting there". i try to be actively doing something (not sitting) when visitors come in but sometimes i have to sit to get charting done to be able to transfer someone out of the unit. my manager told me i need to spend more time helping others. i am trying to get my work done....not eating bon bons.... any one else having these troubles? what has worked to re-energize you in nursing? i have been tired and bummed before this is much different.
    •  
  2. 26 Comments

  3. by   traumaRUs
    For me when I went through this, I went back to school and move on. Our experience is a real benefit. Would this be an option? I see that you live in IL. Are there other options to continue in nursing? I did case management for two years while in school and liked it a lot.
  4. by   RunningWithScissors
    Hey, Sunshine, how about transferring to a less acute setting, like telemetry or general medicine? Usually, the patients are less sick and families less stressed out, also less frequent assessments, etc. There may be just as much committe work and meetings, but less competencies to keep up with.
  5. by   UKRNinUSA
    google "compassion fatigue"
    you might find some answers there
  6. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from sunshines66
    [font="verdana"]
    i have been in nursing for 18 years. all in critical care or emergency dept. i feel like every ounce of compassion and strength i have has been sapped. every day it seems there is more and more the hospital wants from me. no real break time. calls are forwarded to the break room during my lunch. patients becoming more cruel and demanding. the other day one of my patients felt i needed to be at the bedside all the time. at visiting time i was sitting at a desk outside my pts rooms charting on paper and the computer portion. i talked to the family outside of the pt room updated asked if they had any questions said i would be here if any came up. they talked to the pt. then i am suppose to be cruel and careless for not being with her all the time and just not just "sitting there". i try to be actively doing something (not sitting) when visitors come in but sometimes i have to sit to get charting done to be able to transfer someone out of the unit. my manager told me i need to spend more time helping others. i am trying to get my work done....not eating bon bons.... any one else having these troubles? what has worked to re-energize you in nursing? i have been tired and bummed before this is much different.
    [font="comic sans ms"]if you're just having a bad day or a bad week, a long walk may help. i used to walk three miles with my dogs after every 12 hour shift. it helped. i'd come home able to converse pleasantly with the so i couldn't wait to get rid of. that's some stress busting walk!

    a change of shift is usually the first thing i try to haul me past impending burn-out, and often it helps. if it doesn't a change of venue may. change units or hospitals or even cities. (last time, i had a temper tantrum and moved from seattle to the east coast. it worked! two more years without burning out and melting down!)

    if you're totally burning out on nursing, check out some other career. i went and got my mba -- then realized i was an adrenalin junkie and wasn't ready to leave the bedside. that was 17 years ago!


  7. by   ptadvocate81
    With the critical care and ER background have you ever considered hospice nursing? It is a refreshing change and such a wonderful experience. Although not for everyone, just thought that it might be something for you. Best wishes and I will keep you in my thoughts. Maybe home health even? A change in pt acuity and scenery may be just the cure!
  8. by   ckben
    Quote from RunningWithScissors
    Hey, Sunshine, how about transferring to a less acute setting, like telemetry or general medicine? Usually, the patients are less sick and families less stressed out, also less frequent assessments, etc. There may be just as much committe work and meetings, but less competencies to keep up with.
    having worked both telemetry and med/surg, i can honestly say this is NOT good advice. the patients may be less sick, but you will have more of them. and they and their families will NOT be less demanding, i can promise you that. no, telemetry and and med/surg can be just as hellacious as any other critical care setting.
  9. by   Agent99
    I've worked PICU and Peds floor. The families on the floor are worse. There are more of them, they are demanding and tiresome. I think the families in PICU are more in shock and are more appreciative. The families on the floor think that we are their personal assistants/waitresses/housekeepers/babysitters. etc.
  10. by   Agent99
    Sunshine

    I know where you are coming from. I also feel the same exact way, which is why I'm looking to get out. Everytime we turn around, they want something else. Precepting, charge, committees, high acuity patients, demanding families, clueless management, ancillary staff that doesn't care, physicians, etc. I'm finished.

    My resume is out there, and I am getting phone calls.

    With your experience you will surely get something great, the hardest part is making up your mind to get out, and then sending out resumes. Once you do that, you will be on your way. Change is good, it refreshes us and makes us feel human again.

    Good luck.
  11. by   burn out
    I think alot of the problem is that nursing has always been everything that any one wanted us to be. We try to live up to patient and family expectations, hospitals expectations etc. I don't think nursing has ever said THIS is what a nurse is and This is what we are going to do. We willnot be maid servants to our patients but we will care for them and do what is in our scope to help make them better...it may not be what everyone expects but it will be what we are willing to give. We need to take control of our own profession then we will be in control of our own destinies.
  12. by   Agent99
    I am at the point where if I never saw the inside of a hospital again, I would be happy.
  13. by   Agent99
    I really feel bad for the newbies coming in. I precept a lot, and see the reality shock hit them like a brick. I do all I can to toughen them up so that they will survive.

    If you don't set boundaries with people upfront(pts. families, etc.) your shift will be a nightmare. And even then, it's too much sometimes.
  14. by   tkhayman
    This is why i now have 3 different types of nursing jobs. 1 Registry( floor nursing) so i make my own schedule. 2. Teaching and 3. per diem at a specialty clinic. This way i avoid the hospital politics and can just show up and do my job and leave. If i do not like the facility i do not have to go back. I did this after 7 years of nursing.
    Sometimes there is a lot of work and other times not much. The variety helps keep me from burning out at one type of job, full time only. This is something new that i have tried within the past 4 months and so far i like it.
    There are many type of jobs out there and with you wealth of experience do not be afraid to test the waters. Good luck!

close