Why? Why is it so hard to find a job I like?

  1. I am really struggling to find a job that fits the list i have for "requirements". So heres the deal, I am 41 years old, just graduated from nursing school May 2016. I was an LPN for 2 years before finishing the RN transition program.

    When I graduated, I got a hospice job. M-F fulltime with "on call" 7 days on, 7 days off....yes, it turned out to be hell. My phone rang ALL THE TIME and seems as though people only die in the middle of the night (harsh I know), but that is when I always had to leave on a call, at 2AM. 6 months went by, told mgmt I couldn't handle to on call requirements and needed to take less on call...maybe a week a month. But that request fell on deaf ears.

    So then I got a job at an LTAC on nightshift....awesome learning opportunity! I worked 6 months there and felt myself getting more and more tired to the point of feeling ill all the time. I thought I would acclimate to being on nights but it only got worse for me. Yes...Yes....i tried the blackout curtains, soothing music, no music, fans, eat before/eat after sleeping...nothing worked, felt like a zombie on my days off. I thought about day shift but there were no openings on days (we were fully staff...and then some) so no idea how long i would have had to wait to switch. I felt like dodo on a daily basis simply from never getting a block of sleep longer than 3 hours at a time. (no bueno)

    Soooooo now here I am now. Got offered a "fulltime" home health case mgr job...M-F. Trouble is, apparently the "fulltime" thing is more like they want me to be available fulltime, not that they actually have visits available. So now I am LUCKY to get 20 visits a week (paid per visit). Since there arent many patients in MY territory, I am forced to take left over visits from other territories (total scheduling nightmare, driving all over the county) to get that 17-20 visits a week. I am so not digging this set up right now. I was told its because home health "ebbs and flows" kinda like a feast or famine scenerio....ummmm that stressful.

    Holy Toledo! I had this figment of my imagination that when I graduated nursing school it would be rainbows and butterflies....the thing nursing dreams are made of. But in reality in the last 16 months as a new RN, I have had 3 jobs and now compiled a list of what I don't want in a job.

    #1 - no "on call" ....sucks the life out of me
    #2 - no nightshift....also sucks the life out of me
    #3 - no wishy-washy consistency with hours....crazy stressful

    Dear god, can I get another job at this time? Do i have to endure where I am at now that my resume looks like crap?

    Rant over...thanks for reading!
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   TriciaJ
    Well, you certainly are a trouper. Nothing wrong with wanting regular hours vs being at someone's beck and call. And nights aren't everyone's cup of tea, either. I don't have any great words of wisdom, except hang in there. Something doable will turn up.

    I'm sending you my best wishes for a short and successful job search. Good luck.
  4. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from SparklingRN
    I am really struggling to find a job that fits the list i have for "requirements". So heres the deal, I am 41 years old, just graduated from nursing school May 2016. I was an LPN for 2 years before finishing the RN transition program.

    When I graduated, I got a hospice job. M-F fulltime with "on call" 7 days on, 7 days off....yes, it turned out to be hell. My phone rang ALL THE TIME and seems as though people only die in the middle of the night (harsh I know), but that is when I always had to leave on a call, at 2AM. 6 months went by, told mgmt I couldn't handle to on call requirements and needed to take less on call...maybe a week a month. But that request fell on deaf ears.

    So then I got a job at an LTAC on nightshift....awesome learning opportunity! I worked 6 months there and felt myself getting more and more tired to the point of feeling ill all the time. I thought I would acclimate to being on nights but it only got worse for me. Yes...Yes....i tried the blackout curtains, soothing music, no music, fans, eat before/eat after sleeping...nothing worked, felt like a zombie on my days off. I thought about day shift but there were no openings on days (we were fully staff...and then some) so no idea how long i would have had to wait to switch. I felt like dodo on a daily basis simply from never getting a block of sleep longer than 3 hours at a time. (no bueno)

    Soooooo now here I am now. Got offered a "fulltime" home health case mgr job...M-F. Trouble is, apparently the "fulltime" thing is more like they want me to be available fulltime, not that they actually have visits available. So now I am LUCKY to get 20 visits a week (paid per visit). Since there arent many patients in MY territory, I am forced to take left over visits from other territories (total scheduling nightmare, driving all over the county) to get that 17-20 visits a week. I am so not digging this set up right now. I was told its because home health "ebbs and flows" kinda like a feast or famine scenerio....ummmm that stressful.

    Holy Toledo! I had this figment of my imagination that when I graduated nursing school it would be rainbows and butterflies....the thing nursing dreams are made of. But in reality in the last 16 months as a new RN, I have had 3 jobs and now compiled a list of what I don't want in a job.

    #1 - no "on call" ....sucks the life out of me
    #2 - no nightshift....also sucks the life out of me
    #3 - no wishy-washy consistency with hours....crazy stressful

    Dear god, can I get another job at this time? Do i have to endure where I am at now that my resume looks like crap?

    Rant over...thanks for reading!
    It's pretty rare to find everything you want. You've just got to prioritize and hope you find the top few things on the list. I always feel like I was "meant" to be wealthy and shouldn't have a job at all. If I win the lottery, I promise to split it with you, but I must warn you that I have never bought a ticket.
  5. by   KatieMI
    1). Nights are not for everyone. Now you just know it, and that's good.
    2). Do you actually know what you want? What do you like, besides hours? High stress and exitement vs. low to boring, procedures vs. chats, one boss all the time vs. many and changing, strict guidelines vs. authonomy?
    3) What skills are your strongest, weakest, favorites, hates?
    4). What else us important? You can get a job as a Public Health Nurse, for one example... 8 to 5, M - F, but I pretty much guarantee that it will be a paycut, and a big one.

    Depending on where you are, you have a lot of options. Public Health, school nursing, outpatient dialysis (inpatient implies a lot and lot of hours - any hours), office nursing (primary care and specialties of all sorts), outpatient surgery/radiation/chemo centers are only beginning. All of them except dialysis are typically M-F, no call, all of them are days only. With a little more time and effort, you can get certified in wound care and PICC /IV therapy. Each of these specialties has its own positives and negatives, and only you can tell which one clicks with your gifts.

    I wholeheartedly wish you luck. I went through quite similar situation at one point, and it sucked.
  6. by   SparklingRN
    Quote from KatieMI
    1). Nights are not for everyone. Now you just know it, and that's good.
    2). Do you actually know what you want? What do you like, besides hours? High stress and exitement vs. low to boring, procedures vs. chats, one boss all the time vs. many and changing, strict guidelines vs. authonomy?
    3) What skills are your strongest, weakest, favorites, hates?
    4). What else us important? You can get a job as a Public Health Nurse, for one example... 8 to 5, M - F, but I pretty much guarantee that it will be a paycut, and a big one.

    Depending on where you are, you have a lot of options. Public Health, school nursing, outpatient dialysis (inpatient implies a lot and lot of hours - any hours), office nursing (primary care and specialties of all sorts), outpatient surgery/radiation/chemo centers are only beginning. All of them except dialysis are typically M-F, no call, all of them are days only. With a little more time and effort, you can get certified in wound care and PICC /IV therapy. Each of these specialties has its own positives and negatives, and only you can tell which one clicks with your gifts.

    I wholeheartedly wish you luck. I went through quite similar situation at one point, and it sucked.
    Thank you all! I do find that home health is a little boring to me, 75% of visits are vitals and then "educating" patients. To some degree, i like that but not to that extent. I really liked the skills that did in the hospital and the times when things got exciting such as patients having changes in condition and having to be ready for a code. I also miss the camaraderie with coworkers.
    I also feel very task oriented, just making my report sheet and checking off tasks as i go.
    One other aspect in home health is that i dont feel like i can truly disconnect. Even if i am not really working many hours, it seems as though the hours i do work are spread out...some daytime, some evening, some weekends. I really miss the whole "clock in, work 12 hours, clock out, done" thing.
    So looks like i answered the question. it looks like i need to get back in a hospital just needs to be on a dayshift.I hope i can even be considered with my short times at the other jobs.
    Last edit by SparklingRN on Sep 12
  7. by   traumaRUs
    Moved to nursing career advice
  8. by   operations
    Working nights and crazy hours does a physical toll on our bodies, and because of that, the lucrative pay dangled before us to tempt us into these positions ends up becoming the money we spend of medical care because of the damage done.

    I do not view extra pay from on call jobs as incentive for this reason, unless it's a considerable amount.

    I know some people are high functioning at night and do not get effected by it greatly, but in my opinion everyone is effected by working nights and being on call in the long term.

    I can no longer work nights. My sleep/wake cycle eventually began failing me a few years ago from pushing myself thru these crazy shifts for years. I now have to take medicine at night for sleep. The medicine also treats the anxiety disorder which I developed because of the stress to my body. Therefore, I must take it daily, and take it at night. Nights are off the table for me now, and I do not feel the least bit selfish about it! Neither should you.
  9. by   SparklingRN
    This is very true, the money carrot was dangled in front of me for both the on call in hospice and night shift in hospital. Neither of which were worth the physical and mental stress both put on me. Hind sight is always 20/20! But now i do know they arent for me and unless i am going to starve, have no intention of doing either again.
  10. by   adventure_rn
    Quote from SparklingRN
    So looks like i answered the question. it looks like i need to get back in a hospital just needs to be on a dayshift.I hope i can even be considered with my short times at the other jobs.
    It sounds like you've figured out the best fit for you.

    You may already realize this, but it's possible that in a hospital setting you'll have to start on nights and then work your way up to days based on seniority. When units have open day shift positions available, they almost always offer them to current night shifters before opening them up to new hires; the only way to get a day shift position is if there are literally no night shifters who want it (unlikely). If you see any day shift positions posted then absolutely apply, but those jobs may be few and far between. You may also face a lot of competition against other candidates with longer stretches of acute care experience.

    I know you've explicitly stated that you have no interest in working nights; however, if you do have a change of heart and decide to work nights simply for the sake of eventually getting a day shift acute care position, just realize that the nights aren't forever. Pushing through a few months of nights may be worth it to get that coveted day shift position. On a related note, I'd steer clear of 'rotating' day/night positions. If you have to work some nights, it may be tempting to have at least a few days. However, in my experience rotating days/nights are infinitely harder on your body and psyche than straight nights.
    Last edit by adventure_rn on Sep 17
  11. by   Steffy44
    I started out as a new nurse on night shift. I figured out pretty quickly it wasn’t going to work. Thankfully I got offered days within 6 months. It’s def 10x more chaotic but I don’t regret it. I’m almost 50 and I can’t do the constant switching of times...not with kids.
  12. by   ivyleaf
    If you're open to working out of the hospital, you can work in outpatient 8/9-4/530. I transitioned from inpatient psych (in a regular acute care hospital) to the outpatient group with a very minimal change in pay (i am a float btw our difference, so i get a differential-- but i was getting a diff for evenings in the hospital asl well).

    no weekends or holidays, less stress (generally), no nights, no call.
    it can get a bit repetitive and i probably won't stay there forever, but it definitely has its perks.

    you could also look into case management (inpatient and outpatient-- generally day hours and mostly m-f), working as a nurse in an alf, adult day health center, community mental health/developmental disabilities, occ health, public health, liasion/screener for snf/rehab/homecare, school nurse, urgent care (some evenings and weekends, but more "skills"-y
  13. by   Kratoswife
    You would like the hospital better. Maybe a telemetry floor.

    Which state are you in?

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