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Bright personality required??

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by cherryharlean cherryharlean (New) New

I recently talked to an RN because I was interested in becoming a nurse and she told me that I should reconsider nursing if I am not a natural "people person." As in, very talkative, bright, cheery, and smiley.

I'm not really an extroverted person. I am more introverted. And I am not the type of person who likes to talk and talk and talk. This is not to say that I am mean or cold though! I do warm up to people and I am nice (at least I hope!). I'm just more on the quiet side. Basically what I'm saying is that people would definitely never describe me as "lively" or "perky."

That nurse kind of just implied that she doesn't think I would make a very good nurse and it rubbed me the wrong way because being a nurse is my dream. It's not my fault that I am not as outgoing as her. I never have been like that.

Do you agree with this? In your experiences, do you find that nurses who have more extroverted personalities are more succcessful? Should I try to be more outgoing?

SaraO'Hara

Specializes in LTC, Subacute Rehab. Has 5 years experience.

I'm the same - (almost) unfailingly polite, but very reserved with new people. I tend to think five seconds for every one I spend speaking.

Patients and coworkers still like me, and they will like you too.

Virgo_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ED.

I think it's more important that you be able to communicate effectively. Some of the worst communicators are people with diarrhea of the mouth, because they can't stop talking long enough to listen.

don't be influenced by someone who may not be good at 'reading' other people

do what you feel you want as a career

TheCommuter, BSN, RN

Specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych. Has 15 years experience.

I am a hardcore introvert who doesn't like mingling with different people. I spend about 90 percent of my time in deep thought, and the remaining 10 percent is spoken. To be perfectly honest, I'd be far more satisfied working alone.

However, I became involved in nursing due to the supposed career stability, income, and opportunities. While I enjoy the tasks, charting, disease processes, paperwork, and performance of nursing skills, I cannot stand dealing with people, especially the family members, visitors, doctors, and overly nosy coworkers. In fact, I admit to disliking some of my patients, although I must suck it up and provide care to them.

I cope by working night shift so I can have a fairly quiet atmosphere without being bothered by families, visitors, and managers. Day shift is too stressful for me because I am disgusted at the mere thought of having to deal with all the people. While this might sound disturbing, it is true.

My point is that nursing might be a shaky career selection for someone who is not a "people person."

loricatus

Specializes in ED, ICU, PACU.

I recently talked to an RN because I was interested in becoming a nurse and she told me that I should reconsider nursing if I am not a natural "people person." As in, very talkative, bright, cheery, and smiley.

I'm not really an extroverted person. I am more introverted. And I am not the type of person who likes to talk and talk and talk. This is not to say that I am mean or cold though! I do warm up to people and I am nice (at least I hope!). I'm just more on the quiet side. Basically what I'm saying is that people would definitely never describe me as "lively" or "perky."

That nurse kind of just implied that she doesn't think I would make a very good nurse and it rubbed me the wrong way because being a nurse is my dream. It's not my fault that I am not as outgoing as her. I never have been like that.

Do you agree with this? In your experiences, do you find that nurses who have more extroverted personalities are more succcessful? Should I try to be more outgoing?

The beauty of an introverted person is that they can balance between introspection and empathy. Forget about what this person told you. You can be successful as a nurse being an introvert because you will not come across as an uncaring phoney, as the one that gave you that poor advise sure did.

Being a "people person" doesn't mean you have to be perky all the time. You definitely need to be friendly, but you don't have to be everyone's friend. I think being able to anticipate someone's needs without them having to always tell you makes them respect you just as much, if not more than, someone who can carry a lively conversation. Not everyone you come in contact with is going to want to be bothered by a lot of chit chat. (Especially if they don't feel well!) Don't let her bother you! If you want to be a nurse, then you'll just have to show her that she doesn't know what she's talking about.:wink2:

Another introvert here. It's never been a problem. Being a good nurse is more listening than talking. :)

I have to respond to this because I have a memory of this fairly young bubbly nurse who annoyed the bloody hell out of because of her cheerfulness.She was so fake you could smell it from 1000 miles away.

Do you actually think being fake-happy or cheerful (like how are you mr.John,lovely day isnt it) will make a dying patient more happy?

People need empathy.

Empathy does not =cheerfulness.

Plus in reality how many nurses like this do you see everyday.It is actually opposite,they are down and stresses most of the time.

You will respond to different patients in different ways because you will encounter so many different scenarios that no two will ever be exactly the same.

If you go into a room and the patient is conscious you would smile, introduce yourself, make small chit chat, etc. If the patient however had just found out 10 minutes ago they had terminal cancer you might instead opt to squeeze their shoulder a bit while telling them who you are and that you are there to help them. A bright Betty Sunshine smile at that time wouldn't be appropriate.

You don't have to be a complete extrovert to be a nurse and while you aren't you have stated that you are warm and nice which is what patients need. Often we are too busy for prolonged talking anyway so a few kinds words and a smile go a long way along with quality care. I think you will be just fine.

Chaya, ASN, RN

Specializes in Rehab, Med Surg, Home Care. Has 15 years experience.

Another introvert here. It's never been a problem. Being a good nurse is more listening than talking. :)

:yeahthat:

ShayRN

Specializes in Corrections, Cardiac, Hospice. Has 18 years experience.

My good friend from nursing school is like this, she is very much a NON-people person. As in she don't like them, period. We were both pregnant at the same time. She would get SO STINKING mad when people would come up and touch her belly, or ask her boy/girl, or all the other things people do to preggers women. I LOVED IT! What did she do to become a great nurse? Intensive care....on night turn, perfect for her. She deals with the technology side of nursing. Her patients are vented, unresponsive or transferred. Her patients visitors are home and in bed. Her unit is locked down tight.

Me? Love to hear the stories. I want to know what mom/dad liked to do on their days off and speaking of which, where did they work on their days ON? I became a hospice nurse. Different strokes. That is what is so cool about nursing.

romantic

Specializes in Med-surgical; telemetry; STROKE. Has 9 years experience.

Another introvert here. It's never been a problem. Being a good nurse is more listening than talking. :)

I had to log in to say, agree, agree, agree!

don't be influenced by someone who may not be good at 'reading' other people

do what you feel you want as a career

QFT :D

that nurse is a liar. still water runs deep! they are all kinds of different nurses out there and they are all nurses.

RNperdiem, RN

Has 14 years experience.

I am an introvert too, and I can work as a nurse just fine.

There is not just one way to be a nurse.

I do work with the bright and cheerful, the quiet, the serene, the moody and all the rest.

I do get tired out by a lot of contact with people, but I manage. I wind down with my favorite music CD's during the drive home. I schedule lunch during the off-peak times so I am likely to have the breakroom to myself and can turn off the wretched noisy TV and read a book.

gonzo1, ASN, RN

Specializes in ED, ICU, PSYCH, PP, CEN. Has 18 years experience.

Please don't let the uneducated comment of one person change the plan you have for your life.

Who is she anyway,that you would put such weight on her words.

soulofme

Specializes in dialysis (mostly) some L&D, Rehab/LTC.

Put on a red clown nose and they will change their opinion:clown:

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