Any direction on areas of nursing I should consider?

  1. I'm just starting my accelerated BSN program. I'm having a hard time envisioning myself as a nurse, because there are so many kinds of nurses, that I just don't know where I'm going to fit in. I'm looking for some suggestions as to which kinds of nursing experiences I should seek to experience while in school, so that I can find the right fit for me.

    I've taken heaps of personality tests and am an ENTJ (definitely type A). I've worked in molecular biology labs, for pharmaceutical companies, and reviewing research for 8 years. I don't want to stay in research or work for pharma.

    I know a lot about vaccines, infectious diseases, immunology, genetics. I know how to read and interpret a lot of different kinds of labs. I know a lot about drug interactions and metabolism. I know a lot about thyroid issues and cancer. I have no problems making decisions and stay calm during emergencies. I work really hard (like sprinting hard) and then peter out too soon. I mean I can't sustain my pace for more than two days. My boss says I do the work of three people in half the time. I'm terribly anal about documentation and I write too much. I have a lot of experience writing standard operating procedures. I have interpreted paternity tests, western blot results for Lime's Disease, all manner of lab results, medication interactions, helping people understand risks and what it will be like to be a bone marrow donor, describing what someone should expect is going to happen for various surgeries, describing why a doctor has prescribed a drug, and helping friends figure out if their symptoms are due to their condition or a drug side effect. People call me or ask me to go to their appointments with them, I research their issue, and then we talk. They like to hear it from me, because I am their friend, I do my research, and will not describe anything I don't know. Generally, people seek my help because their doctor doesn't have the time to teach them everything they would like to know about their condition. I do enjoy teaching people about their condition. Also, I have quite a few Vietnamese and Japanese friends who like to discuss alternative medicines, but don't want to discuss it with their doctors. I research these and provide them with evidence for or against and discuss whether or not they can incorporate both approaches (AHRQ AND NCCAM are good sources). I always tell them to discuss everything with their doctor - I'm don't counter what the doctor has suggested. Only once have I suggested the doctor was wrong; the doctor did not read a positive Lime's Disease result correctly and I told them to get a new doctor. They did and I was right.

    I'm very petite - so am a little worried about physical handling of large patients. I don't EVER pass the buck though.

    I expect too much of people who work for me and I tend to think a lot of people are not very smart - it's the ENTJ thing - I can't help it. People who are not self starters drive me insane. If I say, "This is now your task to complete every week;" I don't want to have to tell you to do it every week. I just want it done. I'm terribly logical. Good math and critical thinking skills like a lawyer.

    My personality tests results show that ER nursing and ICU nursing might fit. I know I would like travel medicine/infectious disease (as in planning vaccines for travel internationally - not traveling around the country as a nurse).

    Does anyone have any other suggestions for things I might not have thought of? Do you know any nurses that sound like the kind of person I am?
  2. Visit schade1 profile page

    About schade1

    Joined: Jun '13; Posts: 13; Likes: 5


  3. by   Fireman767
    Well as much as you are looking for help, this is one of those decisions you need to make. However I will say if you do suggest a doctor is wrong in an ICU or ER, more than likely you will make enemies.
  4. by   LoriRNCM
    "Lyme disease".
    Sounds like you should go straight for your MSN so you can run a floor. JMO.
  5. by   loriangel14
    Do you get Limes Disease from to many Corona beers?
  6. by   ChristineN
    As I was reading your post I was thinking before I even saw you had considered ER or ICU that ICU would be a good fit for you. It would allow you to really get to know your patient, your charting must be anal and in depth as you will have a lot going on, and you must be able to stay calm under pressure. While I think it is great you want to do international nursing, you could do something like ICU for a year or two first and then build off of that.

    Have you thought about a career in public health nursing? Or what about eventually getting a Master's in public health? You seem like with your background it could be a good fit for you.
  7. by   LoriRNCM
    Quote from loriangel14
    Do you get Limes Disease from to many Corona beers?
    I love a cold corona with a lime!
  8. by   Fireman767
    didn't he say he peters out after two days? more than likely he will get burned out quickly in an ICU.
  9. by   loriangel14
    [I expect too much of people who work for me and I tend to think a lot of people are not very smart - it's the ENTJ thing - I can't help it. People who are not self starters drive me insane. If I say, "This is now your task to complete every week;" I don't want to have to tell you to do it every week. I just want it done. I'm terribly logical. Good math and critical thinking skills like a lawyer.]

    It sounds like you will be a nightmare to work with.You mention expecting too much of people who work FOR you. You will have to realize that in health care we are a team and treating people like they are your minions will not go over well in the work place.
    Last edit by loriangel14 on Jun 21, '13
  10. by   Fiona59
    How I read your post is "it's all about me".

    As a new grad in a lousy labour market, you are going to have to settle for whatever job that will hire you. You won't be anybody's boss or resource person for a very long time.

    If you lose interest or burn out after two days, you will have a very difficult time on any unit.

    You need to slow down, adapt to the pace of your training class, and realize that nurses have very little power in the great scheme of the healthcare world.
  11. by   schade1
    I work well in a team. I just don't enjoy managing people. That's why I said that. I expect others to work as hard as I do and to use their brains (and not rely on spell checker - as often as I do). That's supposed to be funny, btw.
    Both of my bosses have cried when I left. I am a great team player and a great employee. I was suggesting that I don't want to manage people.
  12. by   schade1
    Please excuse. I do rely on spell checker too often.
  13. by   schade1
    Thank you. I do understand not to go against the physician. However, if someone is clearly going to suffer because of an error. . . . I have done 100s of western blots in the lab. The way the results read on the Lyme test is confusing. I am not at all surprised the doctor read it wrong. My friend called the doctor twice because she was confused by the results. The doctor said it was negative twice. Then she called me for a second opinion. I read it and it was clearly positive. I told her to get a new doctor. The new doctor read the results as positive as well. She had to take treatment much longer because the first doctor did not read it correctly and failed to get her started on antibiotics. It is really the fault of the company that provides the test results. It should be easier to read.
  14. by   schade1
    I did consider an MPH, a JD, and a PA. I found that nursing seems to offer the most career paths. Options are appealing. You are right, public health may be a good fit. Maybe I'll seek an experience in that arena, while I'm in school.

    I think people maybe missed what I was asking for. I was hoping for suggestions on areas I might try to seek out learning experiences while I'm in school, that might then turn into a career goal for me after school. Sorry - maybe this post will make things more clear.

    I think we get clinical hours in five basic specialties during school, one of which is ER. I'm excited to see what it's like and to see if I have the stamina. I may be able to ask for clinical experience in areas that are not in the ones they are offering. I think the areas are labor and delivery, pediatrics of some sort, ER, rehabilitation, and ICU. Any suggestions?

    Comments regarding stamina: I can work part time. I'm not sure if part-time work is common. I prefer it. I know I won't have the pick of any job I want after school and will likely have to work nights etc. That's OK.

    It's definitely not all about me. I'm giving up a lot to go to nursing school. I will make substantially less and will be starting over at 40. I've moved all the way across the country, away from family and friends, and uprooted my family to go to school. All this, because I want to learn something practical that can actually help people. I don't feel like my work has meaning in research - anymore anyway. It feels administrative, at this point.

    I was a couple weeks from being on the beach in Chennai, India during the tsunami, where all those people died (it didn't all happen in Thailand). I couldn't change my flight and went there. I wanted to help, but don't have practical skills - only some knowledge. I was told leaving and not taking up a hotel room that could be used by a nurse or doctor would be the most helpful. There was cholera and malaria after the tsunami and I didn't have enough meds to cover me for India and my next destination. They had been using my room for refugees when I arrived. I left - I felt horrible leaving. I've never felt more useless. Since then, I have had a very strong desire to learn skills that can be used - really used - under any circumstance anywhere. So, I've quit my career and am going back to get another bachelors degree in something useful.

    I do volunteer. I helped organize a free healthcare clinic that treats about ~4000 people in one weekend every year. This was very rewarding and drove me to want to learn practical skills even more.

    I am a leader, but do not want to manage people. I can manage large projects, but don't want to have to delegate too much, or rely too much on others doing their part without micro-management. If they don't need micro-management - I'm great. It's hard to describe here. I am hard to work for - I needed to spell out my downsides in order to get good suggestions - but I'm not hard to work with. Hope that makes more sense. I was trying to explain so that no one would suggest that I seek to move into management, because of my personality. Been there, done that, don't like it.

    Anyway, any supportive folks with other suggestions? I greatly appreciate everyone taking the time to have read my book ;-)