Getting through specialties that you don't find special

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    I'm currently a CMA and am slated to start the nursing program next fall if all goes according to plan. I love patient care and I have been so focused on the end result that I am now getting nervous about the little things it takes to get there. How do you get through clinicals in specialties that you hate? For instance, working in peds or OB is not my department of choice but I know I'm going to have to spend weeks doing it. I'm starting to get concerned about things like how do you get through your least favorite tasks or procedures. What I do as a CMA is not nearly as invasive as an RN. I'm used to urine and sputum and all that good stuff, but no one honestly likes working with bedpans or feces. I'm not one of those people that have wanted to do this their entire life, I made a career change and have sort of found out along the way that I really like it, and I believe that this is the path I am meant to be on. I absolutely love the way that patient care allows me to put a nervous patient at ease or lend a listening ear to a lonely patient. I think I am just starting to psych myself out and get cold feet. I think I've analyzed my decision so much that I'm nitpicking. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
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  3. 7 Comments so far...

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    Is it specialty areas you are worried about or certain tasks?
    Try to go into each clinical area with a positive attitude. You may be surprised. Quite often nursing student s have preconceived notions about what they will and will not like.Many times you will enjoy the things you don't expect to.Try to make the most of each placement. They are all learning experiences.
    elkpark and SoldierNurse22 like this.
  5. 2
    I think you might be psyching yourself out. In my class, no one has had any sort of soul-bending crisis over spending time in a specialty they don't like. Not enjoying it doesn't necessarily equal a bad experience unless you make it so.

    I also wouldn't spend too much time mulling over things you don't like. You might be surprised by what you end up loving, and at worst, keeping an open kind will have a wonderful impact on your emotional state if you're somewhere you hate.

    Remember...the NCLEX doesn't just cover what you want it to, and you don't know where you'll end up. You may just be grateful to get an offer. You need ALL of those experiences.
    elkpark and SoldierNurse22 like this.
  6. 3
    Quote from Stephalump
    I also wouldn't spend too much time mulling over things you don't like. You might be surprised by what you end up loving, and at worst, keeping an open kind will have a wonderful impact on your emotional state if you're somewhere you hate.
    This.

    I was CONVINCED I wanted to work in L & D or NICU. Well, after those rotations, I realized that I didn't like them at all!

    Also, you never know when paths will cross; for example, psych patients can have babies, pregnant women can end up in the medical ICU, and patients with extensive medical histories can be in traumatic accidents - and we know EVERYONE ends up in the ED.
    Esme12, elkpark, and SoldierNurse22 like this.
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    Honestly, just go into each clinical experience with an open mind. You really won't know what it's like and how you will deal with it until you get there. I had a day in hospice as one of my ancillary units and I was not looking forward to it at all. I ended up loving my day there and kind of hope I can go back.
    elkpark and SoldierNurse22 like this.
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    I'm with the other commenters so far, just go in with an open mind and tell yourself you're there to learn everything you can. you don't have to want to do peds to do well on the peds floor. You will very likely pick up some good info from the floor that you didn't expect. I ask the nurses questions when I can, even if it's just general nursing and not floor specific. go in with curiosity, do everything you can do, and learn to enjoy the time that you have there where you're not licensed.

    I didn't think I'd like OB and I LOVED that floor because the NURSES were so awesome. I didn't think I'd like mental health but oh boy was last night enjoyable. Now it's unlikely I'll end up working in either of those places because it's not really my thing, but I really ENJOYED my time there so I suggest before psyching yourself out, go in and enjoy the experience and LEARN as much as you can
    DeLanaHarvickWannabe likes this.
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    Thank you all so much for your replies, I really appreciate the advice and encouragement! I agree that I should keep an open mind, a positive attitude, and embrace every aspect of the learning experience. It will only make me a better nurse, and better person, in the end.
    DeLanaHarvickWannabe likes this.
  10. 2
    Quote from BuckeyeCMA
    Thank you all so much for your replies, I really appreciate the advice and encouragement! I agree that I should keep an open mind, a positive attitude, and embrace every aspect of the learning experience. It will only make me a better nurse, and better person, in the end.
    And, of course, complain profusely when you get home. It's cathartic :-)
    BuckeyeCMA and loriangel14 like this.


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