Hello new nurse here! I am currently working in the ER. I like it! and things at work are going well. However. The other day my husband pointed out to me that since I've started working, I tend to take to take things out side of work, not seriously. For example one of my friends is really stressed out about a play that she's in and while I recognize that it could be stressful in my mind nobody's going to die so why even worry about it? Do any of you have experience with this? I never used to be like this and I don't know if I like it.
I think that I take work too seriously. It dominates my existence, simply because of the difficulty to make a living. At this stage of my life, I should be enjoying what time I have left, not worrying about paying the rent or what some self-centered "client" is going to do to my livelihood just because they can.
I think all of us have those moments once in awhile. The things we see daily are of such magnitude that everything else seems trivial in comparison. The fact that you've recognized it means you're going to be able temper it. As long as you remember that each of us has different experiences and different anxieties, you'll get past this.
When my son was a small child, we made friends with another family at the oncology clinic we attended weekly; the boy was only a few weeks older than my son at the time and both of them were being treated for potentially life-ending diseases. Both his mom and I went back to school as soon as we were able to become nurses. She told me that when she did her peds rotation in school, she really struggled with the same feeling that anything less than leukemia in a child was just not anything to be upset about. She found herself thinking, "But it's just an appy... It could be so much worse! Like CANCER!!" The way I see it, having a child in hospital, for whatever reason, may very well be the worst thing that has ever happened to that family. They have nothing to compare it to, and it's a big deal for them. In the same way that your friend's performance anxiety is a big deal for her. You can reassure her without feeding her fears. When you find yourself thinking how much worse something could be, replace those thoughts with acknowledgement that it's important to that person so it matters. You'll be fine.
I also think that such feelings are common. Sometimes, I find myself faking concern with my friends/family while inside I am thinking, "Why are they so upset? This is no big deal."
I worked as a social worker and then managed a program in a prison--I felt the same way once I started working outside of those "high stakes" jobs! Not everyone is as um lucky LOL as we are so they have a very different scale!
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