finding your niche

  1. I need advice! I have no idea what I want to do with my nursing career. I am on my third job since I graduated 2 years ago and still do not feel content with this job or any of the career decisions I have made. I constantly change my mind about what I may want to do in nursing and I am afraid that my frequent job hopping will look bad on my resume, but I refuse to stay stuck in a job that I know isn't for me and is making me unhappy. I am quickly becoming discouraged and uncertain of this profession. Has anyone heard of a career counselor especially for nurses?
    Does anyone have advice? It would be greatly appreciated!
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Kerri,
    i have been a nurse for ten years, and I still have not found my niche either!

    I have been looking through the summer schedule of classes at my local community college. They have some exploring career options classes.

    Maybe a cc near you has something like this. I do wish there were nursing specific career counseling services.
  4. by   Nurse Ratched
    Can you give us an idea where you have worked so far?

    You might start by asking yourself some questions. What did you really enjoy when you were in school? Is there a particular age group you like working with? Do you prefer to have patients short term, intermediate or long term? Do you like a fast pace and lots of gadgets and tubes and lines in your nursing, or do you prefer a little less techno-wizardry and with conscious people?

    Perhaps agency is an option for you and you could do a little of several things.
  5. by   Karina212
    Thanks for your quick replies! So far I did ER for 7 months, PICU for 1 year and now I'm working for a pediatric neurologist.
    Originally, I thought I'd like critical care, but realized it's just not for me. I thought maybe bedside or hospital nursing wasn't for me so that's why I chose to work in a doctor's office which I'm not too crazy about either. When I was in school, I really liked all my rotations. I have wanted to try child/adolescent psyche but there are not that many opportunities where I live and have no experience with it, but for some reason, it just appeals to me. I really want to go back for my masters degree soon but I don't even know what for! As you can see, I'm a little confused. Thanks for your help!!
  6. by   Nurse Ratched
    If you don't mind my delving a little further?

    How do you feel about the jobs you have done so far? Did you leave them because you felt bored? Overwhelmed? Was it something as simple as lousy hours? Do you know specifically what you didn't like about what you were doing? I know it can be hard sometimes to put your finger on it - sometimes it just doesn't feel "right."

    I did oncology for a while right out of school. I had worked geriatrics for many years as an aide and later in administration. We moved and I went into med-psych before stumbling on a clinic job which I *love.* I still work the hospital prn. It took me a little while to find a job I'm pretty sure I can die doing lol. I'm sure you will, too.
  7. by   katscan
    I was so out of my niche that I dropped out of nursing for awhile and sold cosmetics! I finally found my niche in school nursing 20 years ago and I haven't budged since. Hours are great-weekends and holidays off, spring break and summer. The pay is great too if you can find a district that pays teacher salary.
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Would you consider nursing education? There is a GREAT shortage and if you want to do your master's, you may have it paid for . Lots of ADN programs will hire BSN's with experience if they agree to go on and get a master's. I know, two of MY instructors did just that and it was paid for by their employer. One for her NP; the other a straight MSN. It's a consideration.
  9. by   atownsendrn
    Kerri212 - All the above advice is great!!! Keep looking and don't get discouraged. As far as your resume is concerned, the nurse recruiter or manager (whoever you happen to interview with) will understand the situation. Just make a point to explain that you have been unhappy and are still actively looking for where you feel like you should be. I have always known that ER was "my thing" But I have interviewed several RN's who were making career changes and looking for their niche. Hired two and have never regretted it. Both are fabulous nurses.
  10. by   Karina212
    Thanks everyone for your replies!

    Nurse Ratched - It's really hard to pinpoint what I didn't like about my past jobs. Actually, there were aspects that I liked and disliked about all of them. I liked the fast pace of the ER, but not the craziness, which of course was most of the time. I was also a new nurse so I didn't know enough to keep up with the pace, critical cases, etc. PICU was a much better learning environment and learned alot and felt mostly comfortbale, but had an extremely hard time dealing with death and found I just didn't like critical care in general. Also the unit didn't have a manager, staffing was not great, and some of the attitudes were very unprofesional. Also worked nights which I couldn't stand, along with weekends, holidays, etc. So I decided maybe office nursing would be a pleasant change. The doctors and staff are great, no weekends or holidays, but it just doesn't feel "right." I'm going to do some peds homecare on the side and see how that goes. I also may go per diem or agency at my old hospital.

    Katscan - I've actually considered leaving nursing for something like fashion or makeup but don't think I would! I have considered school nursing but need to think about going to school for my certification as it is required in NJ. I do think I may like it, especially in a high school. I may try substituting in the future.
  11. by   truffles111
    Hello, I understand exactly what you were saying.....did you ever find you niche??? nursing? non nursing??

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