My love-hate relationship with nursing

  1. 0
    I am a new grad in the MICU. I have a love hate relationship going on with nursing. Some days I feel really good about nursing. Some days I come home in tears.

    On my days off, I find myself stressing about the last shift I worked if it went bad. I'm still in orientation and trying to develop my nursing judgement. I try to stay on top of my time management. Sometimes, I try to "do it all" because I'm so terrified of when I get off orientation, so I tend to "overwork" myself so I can get used to working alone. This is not a good thing. I'm working on learning how to delegate and ask my co workers for help.

    The night could be going great. I'm caught up on all my meds, I've given my night bath, I've drawn my labs. And then my pt starts to crash. Then I become thrown off track and try to run around and get my pt stable again. I'm learning to relax. I'm also learning to be flexible because anything could happen at any time. Nothing goes as planned.

    I love nursing because I am a giving person. I love seeing a pt come in circling the drain, and my care has helped keep them alive. I love seeing them become stable again and leave my unit. Then I hate nursing. I hate all the politics, all the paperwork, all the stress of worrying about making a mistake that may kill someone, and not being able to relax on my days off.

    I'm constanly learning and growing each night I go into work. I'm starting to let go of the "perfection" attitude, because there will be some nights I can't do it all. I will have to delegate some things to my coworkers and the day shift. I ask tons of questions and I will never stop asking them. If there is something I don't know, I'm looking it up. I spend my downtime reading over protocols.

    Does it ever get better? Will the anxiety let up a little?

    Thanks for listening.
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  3. 12 Comments so far...

  4. 12
    The anxiety gets better. You learn more. You develop more skills. You get more comfortable in your role as a professional nurse.

    However ... for many of us ... the love/hate thing is permanent. The real world is not all "black or white." There is a lot of gray and there is a lot of movement back and forth between black and white. Those who have long term satisfying careers are those who learn to live with the ambiguity and ups & downs that are part of the health care world.

    Hang in there!
  5. 0
    Quote from llg
    The anxiety gets better. You learn more. You develop more skills. You get more comfortable in your role as a professional nurse.

    However ... for many of us ... the love/hate thing is permanent. The real world is not all "black or white." There is a lot of gray and there is a lot of movement back and forth between black and white. Those who have long term satisfying careers are those who learn to live with the ambiguity and ups & downs that are part of the health care world.

    Hang in there!
    Thanks so much for your wisdom! I have come to realize that there will always be some things I love about nursing and some things I will always hate about nursing. But I'm trying to love it more than I hate it.

    It's so hard being a new grad and realizing how much I really DONT know. My confidence is non existant and my stress level is through the roof. My frustration level is off the charts now. I try not to be so hard on myself, so I'm learning more about myself and growing each night I work.

    The things they DONT teach you in nursing school!
  6. 1
    Quote from nurse2be09
    Thanks so much for your wisdom! I have come to realize that there will always be some things I love about nursing and some things I will always hate about nursing. But I'm trying to love it more than I hate it.

    It's so hard being a new grad and realizing how much I really DONT know. My confidence is non existant and my stress level is through the roof. My frustration level is off the charts now. I try not to be so hard on myself, so I'm learning more about myself and growing each night I work.

    The things they DONT teach you in nursing school!
    You hit the nail on the head when you stated that it is hard being a new grad and realizing how much you don't know. I went through the OMG shock of knowing very little when I started my first job as a new grad. What you were describing sounds just like how I was when I started my first job. I really think that I thought that everyone expected my to know everything and to be perfect. I was driving myself nuts on my off time thinking of all the things that I did not do, what I needed to do better, and how everyone else seemed to be better and smarter than me (even the new grads that just graduated with me). I was honestly working on a nervous breakdown.

    One day I made up my mind that I do not nor will I ever know enough and I most certainly will not be perfect. I will mess up from time to time. There will always be someone faster, smarter, or just plain have it together better than I and that was ok. That faster, smarter, or just plain have together better than I people became my resource people when I did not know what to do or I was running behind.

    Here is the most important conclusion that I came to that day: if I did not kill somebody or cause injury to somebody I did not mess up that bad so I am not worrying about it.

    Almost three years later I am still a nurse and I have not messed up badly enough to hurt or kill someone, so I guess I am doing ok. I now train new nurses and that is a lot of fun. However, I have not yet achieved a level of knowledge that I wish I had, but that keeps me learning new things.

    Overall, you can do this and nobody expects you to know everything.
    shoegalRN likes this.
  7. 0
    Quote from llg
    The anxiety gets better. You learn more. You develop more skills. You get more comfortable in your role as a professional nurse.

    However ... for many of us ... the love/hate thing is permanent. The real world is not all "black or white." There is a lot of gray and there is a lot of movement back and forth between black and white. Those who have long term satisfying careers are those who learn to live with the ambiguity and ups & downs that are part of the health care world.

    Hang in there!
    You're one of the best posters on this forum. Thanks for doing it.
  8. 0
    Quote from Bortaz, RN
    You're one of the best posters on this forum. Thanks for doing it.
    Thank you. ... but make me blush. :typing
  9. 0
    Quote from llg
    Thank you. ... but make me blush. :typing
    Then my evil plan was a success.
  10. 1
    You certainly have a point. One has to mentally prepare themselves really well for a career such as this. Working with people can be very stressful and to deal with what nurses do is truly impressive. But then again, you chose this path and it can only expand your view to another world of life. If at times you feel u get a positive feedback from work then it means you do care and are working hard to prove it to yourself.


    -p.s. nursing rocks (:
    showbizrn likes this.
  11. 0
    Quote from llg
    The anxiety gets better. You learn more. You develop more skills. You get more comfortable in your role as a professional nurse.

    However ... for many of us ... the love/hate thing is permanent. The real world is not all "black or white." There is a lot of gray and there is a lot of movement back and forth between black and white. Those who have long term satisfying careers are those who learn to live with the ambiguity and ups & downs that are part of the health care world.

    Hang in there!
    Absolutely the truth. Bingo! It's all about coping...
  12. 0
    Hello All,

    I'm actually interested in pursuing a nursing career. I'm currently in public accounting and I hate it. I don't find it rewarding at all - I sit behind a computer all day. The only time I ever get up is to 1) Ask the client a question over a mistake they obviously made 2) Go to the bathroom 3) Get up to leave for lunch 4) Get up to leave to go home. Plus, in public accounting, we work about 10 hours a day, and still bring work home, and work at night, and work 60 - 70 hours per week during busy season from January - April, which includes weekends. Overall, I want to be a nurse - I want to help people get better, I want my job to be rewarding! I feel I've developed a lot of skills from public accounting, that I can use in nursing - establish client relationship (we have to have a good relationship with both our colleagues and the clients we audit - it's difficult have a good relationship with a client when your job is to find mistakes!), ability to handle stressful situations, multi-task, practice time management, and DOCUMENTATION. My mom has been a nurse for 30+ years and complains about all the documentation/paperwork nurses must deal with. However, given my profession as an auditor, documentation is my work, my life, it is second nature to me, so I feel I will not have a problem with that. We have a saying at work "If you didn't document it, it didn't happen". There's a college I'm looking into to that has an accelerated bachelors program, where I can get my bacherlors in nursing in 15 months, I will have to be a full time student! Right now, I'm looking to find a regular 8-5pm accountant job, so I can take my prereq courses at night. I applaud you nurses for all you do I can't wait until I'm a nurse!!!!


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