Welcome to the Shangri-La: My (Almost) Perfect Job - page 3

At the risk of jinxing everything, I'm going to say it: I never thought I'd find my perfect nursing job. In fifteen years as an RN, I've held a grand total of thirteen jobs. Granted, some of them... Read More

  1. Visit  houstonlvn profile page
    1
    I am currently on my "dream"job for the 3rd yr. It is something that I never thought I'd like (hard-core pysch being my niche), but it still is psych in a way (well isn't all nursing though). I work at a residental TBI place and care for 16 patients with head injury of course but also various other ailments. I have 6 cna's under me, and they do most EXCELLENT job so that I'm basically just left doing meds. AND I get paid as much as working big hosp 3/4 killing myself. My dog/cat comes to work with me if I want, I play with other peoples animals some days, I can go take a break when I need to, but MOST importantly I have suff. time to do my job MOST days. We have trees everywhere and a beautiful huge pond in front of my house.
    Every now and then we even get a pat on back from admin. instead of feeling like we're taken for granted if we have great skills.
    YES some days I wanna pull my hair out, and swear I'm going to start job hunting, like ****** RIGHT NOW that we've got new DON who is on an RN vs LVN kick and really irritating me. She's a new DON for the first time and fairly new RN, so she will learn (I HOPE). MEANWHILE
    I've gotta roll with the punches and SHUT UP before I ruin my good thing! And with my mouth, HARD FOR ME TO DO. After all if I don't want to be taken for granted, than neither do I want to take this job for granted. At work, I am happier than I've ever been. (KNOCK ON WOOD)
    VivaLasViejas likes this.
  2. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    0
    Quote from itsmejuli
    Please explain what a peripatetic nurse does.
    I describe myself this way because I've always moved around a lot......I get restless and just pick up & go when the mood strikes. At least, until now.
  3. Visit  teencybean profile page
    1
    I've worked all over, from hospice to Level II nursery to home health, and can honestly say I'm happiest with private duty peds. I've been lucky enough to be assigned to long term cases with awesome families--the last one I was there 4 years; the current case family told me they'd keep me until I retired ! Being an LPN is extremely limiting as far as being hired in hospital in this area and has been for the past 15 years as there was the push for RN only staffing with med techs, so I landed in the world of agency nursing--happy to say since pts go home with all sorts of machines these days I don't feel like I'm missing anything but the stress--my current pt is Duchenne's MD with a trach, vent, MicKey button, feeding pump, wheelchair that can do anything but the laundry; I've always liked the family care aspect, too, so this is my Shangri-La!
    VivaLasViejas likes this.
  4. Visit  rn/writer profile page
    1
    Hey, Marla, maybe you can work out a deal where you work there until you need to live there. That way, you never have to leave. I'm imagining a transitional period where you taper down your work hours and just sleep over occasionally until you and your dh just move in.

    Having followed your job sojourn for a little more than six years, I'm so glad you found your Shangri-la. I remember your short-term joy in several new positions, followed by the shock of reality and then the hasty retreat toward the door. You sound so much happier now than you did back then. You're an ace at trying to make the best of bad situations, but had you stayed in a couple of those nasty jobs, I don't know if you'd still be alive to tell the tale.
    VivaLasViejas likes this.
  5. Visit  lawandaluxnurse profile page
    1
    VIVA I love your story, I can so relate, I have had about 10 nursing jobs in 14 years but I am paying for it. If I get an interview they want to know why I left etc. I changed jobs many times d/t being a cargiver for my mom and my own health issues. Now I am healthy and no longer cg to my mom and I feel like HR is making me pay for decisions I made 10 years ago. I am the healthiest I have been in years, I am raring to go , I just cannot find that shangri-la, I have worked floors to OR to homecare to peds. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR ARTICLE! IT GIVES ME HOPE AND I AM GLAD TO KNOW I AM NOT ALONE IN JUST NOT FINDING QUITE THE RIGHT FIT. I WILL KEEP TRYING. THERE ARE DAYS I GET SO MAD AT NURSING AND YET I KNOW IT IS WHERE I NEED TO BE. SOMEDAY I WILL GET THERE. THANKS AGAIN, YOUR ARTICLE WAS INSPIRING!
    VivaLasViejas likes this.
  6. Visit  PROUD2BANLPN profile page
    0
    Really Viva? I find your story redundant and rather selfish. You are a self-described "super nurse"...we have those where I work...none of us can stand them! You bounced from place to place and never mentioned realizing how grateful you were to even have a job. You obviously don't value your patients/residents that much or you'd have realized long ago that consistency and continuity is extremely important for the ill and elderly.
    Frankly you bored me and made me wonder why you stayed in nursing in the first place. And oh BTW, I'm 47 yrs old, proud to be an LPN for 8+ yrs now, have a good reputation and comradeship with my co- workers, have worked at the same places for several yrs. I work per diem in LTC and in Private Duty Home Health Pediatrics. And I admit, there are patients, patient family members and co-workers I'd rather not deal with some days. There is vomit and poop and psych issues but I was born to be a nurse and love it all...the good, the bad and the ugly.
    AND THERE WILL NEVER BE A SHANGRA LA NURSING JOB...WAKE UP FOLKS!
    Last edit by PROUD2BANLPN on Aug 17, '12 : Reason: added text
  7. Visit  rn/writer profile page
    2
    Because this article was posted mainly to give nurses hope that there are still good employers and decent jobs out there, the writer didn't dwell on the reasons why she left some of those "dream jobs."

    I have followed her progress over the years, and let me tell you, the idea that she doesn't value her patients/residents and wasn't grateful to be employed is the polar opposite of the truth. She didn't tell you that she left jobs because new bosses came in or old bosses showed their true colors and asked her to do things that just weren't right--for the employees or the residents. She didn't mention the emotional toll it took to leave people she had grown close to because she couldn't violate nursing ethics (or even basic human decency) with a smile on her face. She also didn't bring up the physical stresses that darn near did her in.

    I know she put in long hours, many of them off the clock, to make sure those in her charge were treated right. She worked with residents and families to solve small problems and head off bigger ones. She counseled staff members and tried to weed out a lot of long-entrenched bad habits without trashing salvageable people. She was so thankful to be employed that she stayed in some situations longer than was good for her.

    Don't forget that she did say some of these jobs overlapped, so, even though it looks like she job-hopped every six months or so, that isn't the case. Two years on a sinking ship is a long time.

    Of course, it's your choice to dislike an article. But if you decide to dismiss this particular member as a selfish, thoughtless, thankless person and practitioner, you'll be missing a lot.
    Last edit by rn/writer on Aug 17, '12
    kcmylorn and VivaLasViejas like this.
  8. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    1
    Quote from rn/writer
    Hey, Marla, maybe you can work out a deal where you work there until you need to live there. That way, you never have to leave. I'm imagining a transitional period where you taper down your work hours and just sleep over occasionally until you and your dh just move in.

    Having followed your job sojourn for a little more than six years, I'm so glad you found your Shangri-la. I remember your short-term joy in several new positions, followed by the shock of reality and then the hasty retreat toward the door. You sound so much happier now than you did back then. You're an ace at trying to make the best of bad situations, but had you stayed in a couple of those nasty jobs, I don't know if you'd still be alive to tell the tale.
    You can say that again! Having a nervous breakdown in the nurse manager's office like I did the last time I worked at the hospital is not good form, but it was better than holding it in until the stress killed me. One time I had a headache that wouldn't go away for several days; finally, I had another nurse check my blood pressure. It was 260/130. I am convinced that the only reason I got away with a B/P that high is probably my relative youth at the time (early 40s).

    You know, it's funny---I was just talking to my boss the other day about the very same idea you had about moving in to my ALF after retirement. I can see myself needing such a place at some point later in life anyway---I just have too many ailments NOT to think I'll need help down the line. What better place to live than there?? And just think, I'd never have to try to get in someplace else where the admissions coordinator would take one look at my list of diagnoses and go "oh H*!! no!"
    rn/writer likes this.
  9. Visit  kcmylorn profile page
    2
    To the naysayer poster- Yes, there are Shangri La nursing positions in nursing! They are not specific positions, they could be in any area of nursing, and level of nursing, in any setting. They are positions where the individual nurse doesn't feel insurmountable stress to the point where the job is a chore, brings it home, lives it 24/7 even on their days off, makes them and their family miserable, One where the nurse cannot find any reason to stay but needing a paycheck- which by the way is "selfish"- because how effective is a nurse/any nurse stuck in a job like that.

    Shangri la is called "job satisfaction" It is a position where the positives of continuing to work there far outweight the negatives. Where you feel like you are actually contribiting something good and are affirmed by either coworkers or your bosses, and most often both, for doing a good job, you are valued and needed and them seeing your good points that you, your self, didn't see becasue all the other positions you've held did nothing but criticize, criticize, criticize and point out the negative attributes or the "needs working on"The bosses and positions that sap the life out of you so there is nothing to give to the people that really matter- the patients. Remember them. They're the people who if they weren't there, you wouldn't be either! These are the positions were the patients are the real focus, not pleasing the boss or corporate. These are the positions where there is NO positive feed back- it's just a contant beating the nurse into the ground. When one attemps many short term positions- these kind of positions/employment settings are very evident very quickly. My last was day 2 on the new job but I stuck it our for 6 weeks- I ended up reporting the place to the Dept of health for let's just say- healthcare workers perform tasks out of their license scope of practice and in in some case- practicing nursing with out a license. That is not a place where I am going to stay and risk my RN license for. Eventually that place will take the nurse down and into court. Not a place I want to be.

    I know for me, like Viva, have had 'too numerous to count' short term jobs in my nursing career-30 years, mostly all them in the hosptial. My Shangri La didn't come in a hospiital setting, My Shangri La was only discovered because I dared to get out of undesirable positions and explore 'out of the box areas' perhaps out of desperation and needing a paycheck,perhaps out of sheer exasperation of exahusting all the hospital settings around me which every place I went was "same crap different day"( in some of these positions, an inner gut feeling actually said "RUN, Now!)perhaps because I was just plain fed up with nursing in general and that out of the box area was the last chance I was going to give nursing it's chance to prove it self to me.


    My Shangri La position was a contract position - I knew when the end of the contract was. As I got into this position I started out knowing nothing of what I was doing and then the light bulbs went off and clicked-I kept hoping the day would not come and by some act of congress, that end of contract would not come. I worked with wonderful people- from the higher ups to the little ones below me, it was a whole different world for me, I was told i had a good work ethic by my Nurse manager who would come an find me and and tell me "It's lunchtime" or tell me it was quitting time. I had a wonderful Nurse Manager, coworkers and a nursing supervisor that used to make me laugh, we would go out to lunch, every excuse was found to have a celebration/ party at work. People were publically praised and recognized for their efforts, The nursing director did daily rounds and stuck his head in to see how each nurse was doing and knew our names- the concern was genuine, if there was a problem, they would help solve it or get back to you about the status and final out come. It was decent, respectful and supportive. It made me want to exceed myself each day I went there. I didn't look over my shoulder wondering where the next point out you mistake was coming from or what did I do wrong now. I was able to critically think clearly and make good solid judgements and not second guess myself because of it. It was just a nice place to be at. A rarity in this profit driven mean competative world. There were none of these annoying phrases of _ "that being said" not a good fit, under one umbrella bull crap- phrases that just don't set well with you which are corporate lingo to mask the "you're not as good as me. The mask of never being good enough. The defeat inspiring phrasings at every turn that produce the feeling of " so why am I here to begin with" That is my version of Shangri La. it's not one specific place- It's a work place culture, ethics and environment. These companies can spend millions on tooting their corporate cultures in fancy brochures but if the higher ups don't walk the walk and inspire their employees- then that money is wasted . Poop rolls down hill and like poop, so do bad attitudes.
    rn/writer and VivaLasViejas like this.


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