Want to be a Nurse, But Terrified!

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    Hi everyone,
    I recently graduated with a BS in Clinical nutrition. I did a 1 year internship at a university medical center. I found myself increasingly interested in more direct patient care than clinical nutrition would allow. I craved the skills, the knowledge, intensity, and importance of what the nurses around me were doing. I am a deeply caring person, soft-spoken, hard-working, hands-on. Despite studying nutrition for five years, I haven't been able to drop this desire to become a nurse. Right now, I am applying to nursing schools. In a way, this will be a "2nd career" for me.
    To be honest, especially after reading many many posts (concerning the reality check of every day nursing, the corporate problems, short-staffing, etc), I am TERRIFIED to enter this field. I am afraid of making a huge mistake. I want to take care of people, but it's as if I'd be committing suicide by going into this field. There seems to be a big "WARNING" label on nursing that just might scare me away!!
    What I need to know from you nurses already out there, working day to day, would you advise someone like me to start this? Is it highly possible that a caring, motivated person can be happy in nursing? Or would it be wise to pursue something else?
    I am idealistic person, and know that the reality shock would be difficult for me, but I just might be able to endure THAT part of it. What does everybody think? Should I go forward with nursing school, or run the other way??!!
    Thanks!
  2. 4 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    Quote from Lara J
    Hi everyone,
    I recently graduated with a BS in Clinical nutrition. I did a 1 year internship at a university medical center. I found myself increasingly interested in more direct patient care than clinical nutrition would allow. I craved the skills, the knowledge, intensity, and importance of what the nurses around me were doing. I am a deeply caring person, soft-spoken, hard-working, hands-on. Despite studying nutrition for five years, I haven't been able to drop this desire to become a nurse. Right now, I am applying to nursing schools. In a way, this will be a "2nd career" for me.
    To be honest, especially after reading many many posts (concerning the reality check of every day nursing, the corporate problems, short-staffing, etc), I am TERRIFIED to enter this field. I am afraid of making a huge mistake. I want to take care of people, but it's as if I'd be committing suicide by going into this field. There seems to be a big "WARNING" label on nursing that just might scare me away!!
    What I need to know from you nurses already out there, working day to day, would you advise someone like me to start this? Is it highly possible that a caring, motivated person can be happy in nursing? Or would it be wise to pursue something else?
    I am idealistic person, and know that the reality shock would be difficult for me, but I just might be able to endure THAT part of it. What does everybody think? Should I go forward with nursing school, or run the other way??!!
    Thanks!
    Depends on your ability to be organized and handle stress. Nursing is very high stress and excellent organization skills are a must. If you can handle the politics without becoming burned out, that will also help. If you do burn out, get out, find another area of nursing to work in for awhile. There is so many opportunities for nurses besides acute care hospitals. I do recommend nursing to people that ask, I know many don't. I clarify it with the above info and point out that while many jobs have high burn out rates, nursing has been good to me so I can't slam it too much. I've always had a job, good paying when I choose to do acute care, and alternative options are out there when I decide to change directions with my career. Good luck!
  4. 0
    Hi Lara - I was happy in my nursing jobs, probably because I had good training that provided me with the foundations to be very organized. If you have the motivation to pursue this field, that'll contribute to your strength and confidence.
  5. 0
    Hi there . My initial response would be not to recomend nursing as a career. However, that said - I think it depends on WHERE you work as a nurse. I mean in which area of nursing and which part of the county. Med/surg is tough! There again I hear that in California or Oregon for example - they have much better patient nurse ratios so it's not as bad there.
    I did burn out working on med/surg for over five years straight and that's what has made me bitter about nursing. Nursing itself is a great job but it's the working short staffed that gets you down the most I think. Shift after shift after shift... working short staffed takes its toll after a while because you can't do the job the way you feel and know it should be done - in the end it's like you can't make anyone happy, including yourself.
    BUT .... find the right area of nursing for you (area = geography and type of nursing) and you sound like the type of person that would enjoy it. I'm still in it right now because like the post above - I took a break and tried a calmer less acute area of nursing so I could recover. If you do ever feel yourself starting to burn out then get out then and there, don't wait like I did because it will eat away at you and you can become bitter about nursing. There are so many avenues in nursing that if you choose wisely where you work you should be okay. Good luck to you
  6. 0
    I understand what you mean about all the negative posts, they scare me too. I am starting my junior year in January, and I'm a little nervous about the lack of happy nurses out there.

    The truth is there are a lot of different opportunities out there right now and you don't need to stay in a job that you hate for any reason. My BS is in Exercise Physiology and I understand your interest in having a more direct impact on your people. Stick to it is my advice, there is a lot to choose from.


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