Quote from jlaac1
Hi loveanesthesia, I was wondering what kind of personality/qualities it takes to become a nurse anesthetist?
Good question... there are all kinds of personalities, that's for sure. In my opinion the most successful are confident and able to tell a surgeon something that the CRNA knows isn't what the surgeon wants to hear. But at the same time are flexible and are able to learn and change. For example for a lot of years it was NPO after midnight and then research found that clear liquids until 2 hours before OR was better. I saw CRNAs who were quite proud of themselves for sticking to their guns and not changing from the old NPO after MN. That lack of flexibility is not good and should not be confused with the confidence to 'stand your ground'.
The best CRNAs are able to adapt to a variety of patients. From the person who abrasively questions everything you do because they are anxious, and the CRNA calmly takes the time to answer everything without becoming defensive. To the person who doesn't want to hear all the risks and just wants to be told that you'll take good care of them while holding their hand.
A CRNA has to be able to give themselves a pat on the back for a job well done, because often no else in the OR understands. If you're doing a good job it looks like you're doing nothing. They don't understand how much skill it takes to make it look easy. That's the reason if I meet a CRNA I've never seen before there's an instant bond.
A CRNA has to be resilient because there will be good and bad days. Sedating a 8 month pregnant woman for a colonoscopy when they find stage 4 colon cancer. Working with anesthesiologists who go online and post comments stating that CRNAs shouldn't have full practice in the VA because they are not competent. CRNAs can't let stuff get them down, at least not for too long.
I love being a CRNA and am incredibly proud to be in the profession, but it's not something you can do part way.