The Stress....???

  1. Hey guys...

    I really appreciate the input from the males on this board. As i said before, at 47, with a BS in business, i am considering the nursing profession as a 2nd career. i have no experience in the medical field but am looking at nursing because i like people, and the profession seems to offer alot of job security.

    However, I've been reading the post on this forum...and some of them reflect the conditions of nursing and the stress involved with the field. Because i am realistic, i want to go in with my eyes WIDE OPEN.

    I know that men and women handle stress of the job differently,...so my question on the male forum is...How do you handle the stress of the job?

    Are certain areas of nursing more stressful than others?

    How does one know if you can handle the stress of the job?




    thanks very much...
    Last edit by TonyFl on Nov 23, '07
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   RNDave
    <<i have no experience in the medical field but am looking at nursing because i like people, and the profession seems to offer alot of job security.>>

    I remember when I interviewed with the department head for the nursing program I went into. I mentioned some of the same reasons for going into nursing as you've mentioned. I mentioned the "nursing shortage", and she said "There's a reason for the shortage." Namely, nursing is hard work and it can be stressful. I'm in my first year and it is stressful. But, I knew that the first year in particular would entail a steep learning curve.

    I'm still working on stress management. Being rested and using a 'worksheet' to organize my patient care has helped manage stress for me. Smiling at work helps, too. Not kidding about that one.

    Cheers,
    Dave
  4. by   SteveNNP
    Are certain areas of nursing more stressful than others?

    I would guess that high-acuity areas such as the ER, ICUs, etc are more stressful, but I think that any job on any floor can be stressful too. It all depends on how you deal with the stress, and whether you enjoy/thrive on it. We're called adrenaline junkies....


    How does one know if you can handle the stress of the job?

    How do you handle the stresses of your job now? Can you avoid internalizing the stress? Do you think about it when you are home? I think if you are organized, and have a good support system, anyone can manage the stresses of nursing.
  5. by   gerry79
    I have minimized my stress by working 3 twelves and having 4 days off to decompress and leave my job at the hospital. I know that I am not going to save the world or change the nursing culture as it is presently constituted. I give 100% while on the job, and leave the RN at the door of the hospital prior to departing. To me its just a job. I did have a more stress job that I did for 25 years before entering the nursing profession. It is what it is, but I try to do my best despite being short staffed and unappreciated.
    Last edit by gerry79 on Nov 26, '07
  6. by   TonyFl
    Thanks guys....

    The problem that i am seeing on this board are the pervasive negative remarks from nurses about the field of work...(sigh).

    I will make another post on the positives of nursing....and see what i can get. There's always pluses and minuses...Right?
    Last edit by TonyFl on Nov 26, '07
  7. by   nursemike
    Quote from TonyFl
    Thanks guys....

    The problem that i am seeing on this board are the pervasive negative remarks from nurses about the field of work...(sigh).

    I will make another post on the positives of nursing....and see what i can get. There's always pluses and minuses...Right?
    I love my stupid job. Sometimes I am reminded that nursing is a synonym for sucking, but it has been my experience in life that anything that's all fun, all the time, costs me money. So, even though I'm just six numbers and a Powerball away from being exnursemike, I continue to recommend nursing as a career to anyone with a serious interest. It is stressful, but there are a variety of sorts of stress available. Critical patients can go from bad to worse in a heartbeat, but you don't have as many. Acute care patients (med/surg, for example) aren't as likely to crash, but still can, and you have to juggle several of them. Home health, you get to spend a good deal of time one on one with a patient who's usually delighted to see you, but then you spend even more time writing about it.
    Not all stress is bad. Sometimes, when you're up to your ears in alligators but getting the job done anyway, it's downright satisfying. Going full-tilt and keeping ahead of the curve is empowering. Going full-tilt and falling behind can get pretty discouraging.

    My Dad tells me that when he was in the service, generals didn't worry about troops who were griping, they worried when they stopped griping. Nursing is a bit like that. On some level, I think a lot of us who aren't particularly dissatisfied just enjoy complaining. It's part of the bonding process. A lot of times, too, what you're pulling your hair out over this week, you'll laugh about in six months. Get a bunch of nurses talking about PITAs from the past and it's hilarious.

    That said, this profession is not without problems. Some of it is inherent. Every day, people die under the care of nurses (and others) doing everything humanly possible to keep them alive, and death is not the only bad outcome you'll see. It's damned difficult to think of something to say to comfort someone awaiting surgery to amputate a limb, or who has just learned they'll be paralyzed for the rest of their life, or has chronic pain with little hope of relief. But then there are other frustrations that can't be written off as part of nature--patients who can't get the care they need, not because it's beyond human means, but simply because there's no way to pay for it. Workloads that aren't really manageable, not because there aren't enough nurses, but because bean-counters figure it's better for the bottom line. All of the problems of any industry--plus sick people.

    And then, after busting your tail for twelve hours, then staying an extra hour just to finish charting, and feeling like crap because you left something (or several things) undone for the next shift, and you're just about to drag your weary butt out the door, an aide comes by to say one of your patients has requested that you stop by their room so they can give you a hug before you go.

    I love my stupid job.
  8. by   RNDave
    That's about the best "in-a-nutshell" description of bedside nursing I've seen, Nursemike!
  9. by   styRN
    Quote from RNDave
    That's about the best "in-a-nutshell" description of bedside nursing I've seen, Nursemike!
    X2!
  10. by   TonyFl
    Mike....what an awesome post.

    You might be able to make a few bucks as a writer...:-)

    Nursing sounds like a tough gig. But it also sound like...if you can handle the down side....you got a good job with good security and future.

    I guess if it was easy....there wouldn't be a shortage of nurses. What scares me is that it will get worse as the population ages.

    thanks bud....

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