On sabbatical? - page 2

I find myself on sabbatical from nursing because: My license tells me that the patient comes first. Employers tell me, no, we come first. Physicians often tell me, we come first. I can only... Read More

  1. by   abrenrn
    Why not vote on the poll?

    I've noticed over 200 looks at this thread, only 18 votes. I'm not sure why. As far as I know, the vote is anonymous, does not require a post.

    Also, I am hoping for a no-flame policy if this thread continues. Everyone can give their opinion. Everyone can disagree with others opinions. No scolding allowed. Simply state, this is my opinion, this is how I think it differs from someone elses, this is why I hold it. No matter how dumb another opinion seems to you, don't say it. You may be wrong. I'm wrong a lot.

    So far, one person has voted "never thought about sabbattical." In a totally open way, I would love to hear from those nurses. I want to know what you have found that makes you happy to be a nurse. I don't know how to do that. Anything you say may help me. If I disagree with something you say, I'll let you know. I won't scold you for saying it.


    I guess since I started this thread, I can set rules - as long as they fit with allnurses.com rules. I believe these do.
  2. by   canoehead
    If we vote on the poll then we can't get back to our search of new posts, have to start all over again and it is a real pia.

    I think most of us have thought about leaving nursing, but ya gotta eat...
  3. by   globalRN
    I honestly have not thought of a sabbatical....there are so many choices in nursing that if one is not happy in one area ....there are others.

    The important thing is to find a field that you really enjoy AND that you can excell at. Gain expertise in an area of nursing. and the world can be your oyster. Consolidate that with university education and/or professional qualifications and your choices can increase substantially.

    I love working in hem/onc; I prefer outpatients; I like having autonomy. enjoy patient teaching and prefer direct patient care so I found a job that has all that built in.

    Survival skills....always be willing to learn new things and to put 100% into the job when on the job.

    Stand up for yourself because no one else will...but try to do so diplomatically. If that doesn't work, then be blunt but clear as to what your expectations are. Never allow yourself to be disrespected......address the issues and the culprit. I sometimes will tackle them the next day....rather than right there and then...mostly because I am so dumbfounded at the lack of professionalism...I am speechless. But I always deal with it, otherwise I could not respect myself if I let it go.

    Don't come to your supervisor with problems unless you also have thought of possible solutions. Be ready to be the one to take ownership to solve the problem if necessary.

    Realize that it isn't always important to 'be right'...ask yourself 'is it worth it to be right'? Weigh the consequences and see if you can live with your choices.

    Be an excellent nurse, mentor and role model...that is how you earn the respect of your patients and your colleagues.

    Be a teamplayer.

    Being a good listener helps....EVERYONE loves a good listener.

    Be professional....don't have 'hissy fits' at work.

    Find a workplace where you like your coworkers and they like and respect you. It's too hard to work in a place with negative vibes.
    Find a supportive supervisor who values and respects you as a professional. If he/she doesn't ....that's your sign to start jobsearching again.

    It is really about choices....you have more choices when you are an expert nurse and you have the experience and the educational/professional credentials as well. So there has to be some investment in those areas if expansion of options is what you want. The other option is to think out of the box and utilize the skills you have learned in nursing in non-traditional ways.
  4. by   Genista
    I am planning on taking a well deserved sabbatical from nursing, in about 1 year to 1.5 years. If I could leave sooner, I would. I decided I want to work in another profession for awhile. I want to check out my other career interest "for real" & see if I like it better. It will take time to re-educate & become qualified for this new field (hence the 1- 1.5 years).

    Meanwhile, I'm still working as a nurse in acute care. I'm burned out. I've been battling burnout since I first started almost 5 years ago! I changed hospitals, changed floors, cut back my hours, and changed shifts in attempts to curb my burnout.

    It's a tiny bit better working part time on my new floor. I never had a problem with my coworkers. I like the "climate" of my new floor. I have moments of deep satisfaction & fulfillment. BUT it is more negative than positive for me now, and has been for quite some time. I'm still DETERMINED to take a break from this career that I feel is unsafe, unfair & NOT FUN! Oh, I make great money & have flexible hours, and even have a few laughs now & again, but I'm sick of all the unrealistic work load stress & slave like atmosphere that I'm expected to work in. I've had it with sacrificing every last part of me when I'm at work, and feeling like a piece of CR@p for wanting to give better care, including take care of ME.

    The healthcare industry has, over time, cut ancillary positions, and nurses are expected just to absorb the role of that missing person! No problem! You lose your unit secretary, the lead nurse takes a full assignment, use one CNA for twice the # of patients, and you cut back on nurse managers. I feel I am doing the jobs of 5 other people, not only mine. I'm not even sure if I'll make it that long (1.5 years). I am so burned out on the nurse abuse that seems rampant in every facility I know. I'm sick of skipping breaks for years , working overtime and being made to feel as if I'm not doing it good enough.

    I'm glad some people can still stay in the profession. I just don't have the heart to try yet another "area" of nursing, only to be set ablaze (burned out) yet again. If I have to go through another "nursing specialty" only to find the same Cr@p, I will be beside myself! ;-0 At this point, I'm eager to face the new bummers of any other profession! LOL!
    I am definately taking a sabbatical from nursing, only I haven't decided yet if it will be temporary or permanent!

    By the way, I LOVE being an RN, I just feel I can't do it safely and realistically in this current environment. I can see from above posts, I am not the ONLY one feeling this way.

    Last edit by Genista on Dec 16, '02
  5. by   abrenrn
    I feel like I need to put in a disclaimer. This is not a flame, just a question.

    Global - where have you worked? I believe I have done all the things you described. In a previous profession, it worked very well. In my last position as a programmer, I was promoted twice in 18 months and given substantial raises as a result.

    As a nurse, I have tried to be the same. I get no promotions unless I beg for them, I get no more than a standard percentage raise unless I can prove to the managers that I have been doing the kind of work they should know (if they are managing) that I am doing.

    I love being a nurse. I just have not found many places that seem to want a professional nurse who knows what he or she is doing. At best they want one who is and does, but pretends to be an idiot.

    I know that is not everyone's experience. It seems that many have it, though.

    I want to know where to find a job like yours.

    Thanks for the info re voting BTW.
  6. by   rebelwaclause
    Originally posted by abrenrn
    canoeheads idea: everyone wear nursing caps to work on National Nurses Day - maybe all week. So, perhaps all nurses, even those who are on sabbatical, should try to find a cap to wear that day/ week - wherever you are, whatever you are doing. People will ask, huh?, why? and you will tell them.
    What should the caps say?

    ("On Sabbatical" sounds interesting).
  7. by   abrenrn
    I'm not sure. What do others think? Maybe just "NO"? I like your idea too.
  8. by   rebelwaclause
    "No" sounds REALLY good!
  9. by   sjoe
    Kona writes--"I'm glad some people can still stay in the profession. I just don't have the heart to try yet another "area" of nursing, only to be set ablaze (burned out) yet again. If I have to go through another "nursing specialty" only to find the same Cr@p, I will be beside myself!"

    After trying on 8 different nursing areas and specialties, I can only agree.

    On sabbatical,
    Last edit by sjoe on Dec 17, '02
  10. by   abrenrn
    But - where are the places where people are happy? How do they get there?
  11. by   Youda
    I was the happiest I've ever been in nursing at my last job. The difference was one of the best human beings, and nurses, that I've ever had the pleasure of working for. She encouraged everyone, was always positive, fought corporation tooth and nail, defended her staff, and demanded to run nursing the way it should be run.

    They fired her.

    It only took a couple weeks of the new DON's corporate attitude to ruin an excellent place to work, and a mere 4 weeks before the state Division of Aging showed up and gave the place 3 J tags, two G tags. (Immediate jeapordy and actual harm). Every nurse quit or walked out except four of us. We were all eventually driven out, too.

    Well, I wanted to say that because it isn't WHERE you work, it's WHO you work WITH! And most managers that are good nurses never survive the management BS.
  12. by   Tweety
    Never have taken a sabbatical. I love nursing and am not going to switch careers. This new house keeps me from taking a sabbatical.

    But I do believe in vacations. Fortunately the hospital I work for lets us take long vacations if we have the time. I took the month of September off, plus a 3 week vacation last March. I come back to work renewed and refreshed. Six months is about my limit, then I start to really need the time. I take it for me.
  13. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    To make an observation,

    About the cap thing.
    It would certainly get alot of attention, but mostly when the male staff started wearing them.
    I understand that males comprise a very small percentage of active nurses, mainly because they leave the profession at a higher rate, but this may be part of the problem. If males are excluded by gender specificity, you will lose 4% of all possible support on day one.

    You can get a company to logo anything. Companies that do that have the items that you use most, ready to print.