Can Anyone Help Me Think This Through?

  1. I am at a point in life where I would like to stop doing things that I don't really much enjoy, such as my work. Unfortunately, I have to have an income. That's ok because I don't really mind working and would probably tire quickly of being totally retired.

    What I'm having trouble with is giving myself permission to stop Nursing. I've done it for a very long time now and it is a habit. There isn't much reward in it for me any more and my job is basically boredom punctuated by stress.

    I know what I'd like to switch to and have already taken steps to do it. But I am afraid to give up the regular paycheck so am easing into the new area. I also find that I have some fear or guilt about stopping Nursing, my habit of several decades.

    How can I be rid of the guilt? Fear is understandable to me. I'm taking a big new step and it could cost me a lot of money. But guilt? Why guilt? HELP! I would appreciate any insights you might have. :angel2: :smackingf
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   NicoleRN07
    Sounds to me like you really don't want to give up nursing at all.
  4. by   Cattitude
    Quote from trudyrn

    how can i be rid of the guilt? fear is understandable to me. i'm taking a big new step and it could cost me a lot of money. but guilt? why guilt? help! i would appreciate any insights you might have. :angel2: :smackingf
    guilt is understandable... as nurses, we are used to taking care of everyone else, and now finally you are going to try and take care of you. it seems that there is a part of you that feels guilty about doing that. don't let the guilt win. it is truly ok to do what you want.:heartbeat
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    [color=#483d8b]it may take you a while to accept this, that it's ok, but it will come. i do know some of what you are feeling. really, life is too short to continue doing things that don't make you happy. if you found something else, something you find joy in, then go for it!
    [color=#483d8b]good luck with everything and again, do good things for you:d
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  5. by   TrudyRN
    Quote from NicoleRN07
    Sounds to me like you really don't want to give up nursing at all.
    I'm very ambivalent. That's why I need some help.

    I never will give up my license. It is much too valuable. And being a nurse is so much a part of who and what I am. It is such a large part of my identity.
  6. by   Halinja
    CASbeezgirlRN kind of beat me to it. But...we come from a generation where we as women were supposed to be the caregiver, selflessly taking care of everyone else. Then...to be a nurse as well, its like a double dose of that "take care of others" mindset.

    But it really is okay to take care of yourself. Do what fulfills you, don't burn yourself out. There are always those needing care...there's only one you. Take care of you. The guilt will fade, IMO, as you immerse yourself in your new life.

    GOOD LUCK!
  7. by   NicoleRN07
    As a nurse, we are accustomed to taking care of others, now that you're doing something for yourself, you've developed a guilty conscience,.probably because you feel that you are abandoning your patients and co-workers/ It's ok to feel guilty, but you shouldn't let it stand in the way of you making a change. If it would make you feel less guilty, just do prn. You won't miss the work, and you won't feel so guilty.
  8. by   lauralassie
    I feel your pain. I'm going through the same thing. Going back to school for my BSN after nursing for a long ---long time. The only reason I'm doing it is because the hospital pays for it and , my kids are both off to college and now it's time for mom. (me). However I find that the classes are a joke. Can't believe there is such a push for BSN. Going to a major university and the classes are a waist of time. So , any way, I'm thinking of doing something else as well. I would say that we need to do what our heart tells us. If it feels right do it. Nursing is always there if things don't work out.
  9. by   allantiques4me
    Why would you feel guilty?? Think about it. Youve cared for people for a long time.Does this have anything to do with the supervisor you were C/o about?Dont let that person get ya down.
  10. by   UM Review RN
    Maybe a couple of sessions with a counselor might give you some insight as to the source of your guilt.

    You've been doing nursing for so long, it might actually give your new career added impetus to step back and analyze your actions.
  11. by   Dixielee
    I am in the same boat, but don't feel the guilt! We are working as hard as we can to begin a new business. You have put your time in the trenches. Nursing is physically and mentally demanding. If you can find something else rewarding to do, then go for it. You have earned it, we have earned it.

    I have worked my share of holidays, nights, week ends, missed kid's birthday parties, family functions and ball games.

    My kids are grown now, and I have more flexibility than ever. I don't want to be one of those people who always wanted to do something else and died regreting never having taken the plunge.

    After all, how many people on their death bed say, "I wish I had spent more time at work".
  12. by   gitterbug
    I so understand. Would love to have a hotdog stand at the beach. Sounds nuts but make some of the best chili around. I guess its a regional thing but we do have wonderful hotdogs here in WV. So make a plan and go for it.
  13. by   TrudyRN
    Quote from allantiques4me
    Why would you feel guilty?? Think about it. Youve cared for people for a long time.Does this have anything to do with the supervisor you were C/o about?Dont let that person get ya down.
    Yes, in part. The whole mess w/her has REALLY undermined my confidence.

    Another thing, though - I think the fact that I'd be going out without getting a going away/retirement potluck or that gold watch or the pension - I'd just be fading away and quietly exiting via the back door if I could keep the secret of my resigning out of the blabbermouths of our staffing coordinator and others - is making it feel like there is no real closure, like I somehow failed to achieve whatever it is one achieves. I didn't make (or want) DON or Head Nurse or whatever, although I did rise a couple of levels from staff nurse. Does that make sense?

    It is just so scary and wearisome to me that nurses can have many great years and then it ends with a mistake or one misstep or one bad relationship with a boss. All those years gone poof.

    On the bright side, I am taking another class today toward my new thing. And Hubbo is joining me in the class. I've waited forever for that.
    Last edit by TrudyRN on Feb 5, '07
  14. by   CHATSDALE
    sometimes we just have a really hard time stepping off the plane even if we have a parachute and we know that the plane is going to crash

    see if you can take a leave of absence..it is kinda like letting go and holding on at the same time...try for six months...by then you should be in a better position to make up your mind

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