Jump to content

Get the Nursing Career You Crave

Nurses Article   (2,969 Views 0 Replies 875 Words)

ElizabethScala1 is a BSN, MSN and specializes in psychiatry, community health, wellness.

3 Followers; 12 Articles; 10,927 Profile Views; 88 Posts

Nurses enter the profession for a variety of reasons with the most common being a desire to help people. Another might include a nurse relative extolling the positive aspects of a nursing career: good wages, steady job, autonomy in most aspects of the job, variety of types of nursing jobs, ability to travel, and opportunity for good retirement benefits.

Get the Nursing Career You Crave

Nurses enter the profession for a variety of reasons with the most common being a desire to help people. Another might include a nurse relative extolling the positive aspects of a nursing career: good wages, steady job, autonomy in most aspects of the job, variety of types of Nursing Jobs, ability to travel, and opportunity for good retirement benefits.

What isn't often said is: the hours can be long, bedside nursing can take a toll on a nurse's health, patients with several comorbidities complicate nursing care, doctors and co-workers can have difficult personalities, family members may question everything the nurse is doing, patients and families sometimes believe the hospital is more like a hotel than a care facility, violence against nurses by patients occurs, and a perhaps the most dangerous aspect of all...high nurse to patient ratios. Topping all that off is nurses are often called on to do better patient care with fewer tools to accomplish it. With all that said, it's a wonder why so many students still enter nursing school each year that many schools have waiting lists, and we have a shortage of nursing faculty!

So how can the advantages of nursing be weighed against some of the more unattractive aspects of the job so students and also veteran nurses get the nursing career they crave? Using the tips below, many preconceived notions could be mitigated before they lead to unhappy nurses in a job they feel was not what they expected.

Craft Your Ideal Vision

To know what you want and what you don't want in a nursing career, make of a list of each. The 'Don't Want' list is the easiest to write first as most people are fairly clear on what they do not want in their lives. When you think about yourself in your role as a nurse, what is it that you don't want to do and where don't you want to be doing it? Include work hours, work uniform (not all nurses wear scrubs), your surroundings, team members, and anything else you know you don't want in your career. Then make the 'Do Want' list. For every don't you listed, write a do. Use a "not that, but this" type of statement. This vision statement technique not only empowers you to attract the type of career you want, it helps you keep your list in the back of your mind. When faced with something you don't want, you'll recognize it immediately based on your list.

Make a Timeline

Not everything you want is going to be immediately available to you. Some of your wants may entail further education, and before you set your timeline, do your research. You may find that some of your wants become don't wants, if they lead you down a path that you don't want to travel. Reassess and adjust as needed.

Grow Your Professional Network

I can't stress this enough. With social media, this is much easier and faster than it was even 10 years ago. Other nurses can tip us off to opportunities we've never dreamed of and help us connect to nurse professionals nationally and even internationally. Want to work in a balmy climate and leave cold winters behind? Connect with other nurses online. You can already have a network of friends in the new area you move to. Social media has a variety of great channels for connections to people with like interests and occupations.

Ask for Help

Use social media or people you already know, but talk to others who have done what you want to do with your nursing career. Trust me, someone has traveled a similar, if not exact, path you want to go down. As the expression goes: don't reinvent the wheel. Pick up where someone else left off, and you'll be that much farther ahead. Tap into the wisdom, experience, and expertise of nursing career mentors, such as academic advisers, colleagues, and nurse leaders.

Read, Read, Read

Amazon and libraries carry a variety of books on nursing career guidance. There are nursing career books on every topic, and if you can't find one, start Googling. Google alerts will send you an email every time someone publishes on the topic, which can cut your research time and deliver the content directly to your inbox.

Try Something On, First

Many facilities offer shadowing opportunities where you can shadow a nurse in the type of role you want before making a change. Some facilities offer internships and also volunteer opportunities. Think of it as "a try before you buy" opportunity, to see if the job is a good fit for you. If you get these types of opportunities, go with a list of questions in mind to ask someone or to discover the answers through the experience.

I wish you good fortune in getting the nursing career you crave. Let us know in the comments what you have done to get the nursing career of your dreams. Did we miss anything that could be helpful to others?

As a keynote speaker, bestselling author and Nurse's Week program host, Elizabeth partners with hospitals, organizations, associations, and nursing groups to help transform the field of nursing from the inside out. In her bestselling book, ‘Nursing from Within‘, Elizabeth supports nurses to make those inner shifts that are required to more fully enjoy our nursing careers.

3 Followers; 12 Articles; 10,927 Profile Views; 88 Posts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
×