Help me! 24 and burned out!

Posted
by swestfall (New) New

I am incredibly burned out on taking care of patients. I have 2.5 years of bedside experience in med-surg. I have held two positions at different hospitals and have not been satisfied with either one. I always feel pulled in every direction and do not feel like I am giving great care. I need ideas for new job opportunities. I would like something with better hours (fewer or no weekends or holidays). I would like to leave the bedside but I am afraid to lose my skills since I am only 24 years old and don't want to take a big pay cut. Also I wouldn't mind going back to school in the next few years but I don't know what to get a degree in. I would like a degree that doesn't limit me to one area (I already have a BSN). IDEAS PLEASE?!?!

CPCTColeman

Has 2 years experience. 86 Posts

Do you still want to work in healthcare or another field. Im a PCT but since I have decided not to go back to school again for nursing I got my associates in Healthcare Administration and decided to go back and get my bachelors in it as well. This degree gives you a step in the door for a few different careers.

CrunchRN, ADN, RN

Specializes in Clinical Research, Outpt Women's Health. Has 25 years experience. 4,371 Posts

Compromises will have to be made for what you want.

40thEditionRN

Specializes in clinic, ortho/neuro, trauma, college. Has 4 years experience. 47 Posts

Look into local universities/colleges and see if there are any openings for RNs in their student health centers. Some of the larger colleges practically have a hospital wing. It would be more like an office job where you still get to utilize some bedside skills.

JC3374

9 Posts

Medical/surgical or pharma sales

Meganmegzxxxx

7 Posts

School Nursing or Health Visiting.. Public health degree ??

X

amoLucia

Specializes in retired LTC. 7,495 Posts

Pharm clinical research - colleges now offering programs for CRA. Clinical Research Associate. Not the nurses who administers direct care, but one who reviews activities of those OTHER parties who do the direct care. My sister did it.

When the FDA requires certain criteria in drug testing trials, reviewers determine that providers were meeting the requirements needed for drug approvals. Not all pharmaceutical companies require an RN. Many of my sister's peers were ancillary healthcare professionals who all had extensive experience in pharmacy, nursing, environmental sciences, health physiology, public health, etc. And many had advanced degrees in their fields. Each company was different re requirements.

My sister used a professional recruiter - that's how to find those positions. (Or if you have personal connections.)

Ruby Vee, BSN

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience. 67 Articles; 14,000 Posts

I am incredibly burned out on taking care of patients. I have 2.5 years of bedside experience in med-surg. I have held two positions at different hospitals and have not been satisfied with either one. I always feel pulled in every direction and do not feel like I am giving great care. I need ideas for new job opportunities. I would like something with better hours (fewer or no weekends or holidays). I would like to leave the bedside but I am afraid to lose my skills since I am only 24 years old and don't want to take a big pay cut. Also I wouldn't mind going back to school in the next few years but I don't know what to get a degree in. I would like a degree that doesn't limit me to one area (I already have a BSN). IDEAS PLEASE?!?!

You're going to have to make some compromises. If hours are the biggest issue, accept the pay cut and move to a clinic or home health position. If a potential pay cut is the biggest issue, stay where you are until you've been there for a full two years. In the meantime, look for internal transfers to an area that is already fully staffed with weekend option employees or doesn't require weekends or holidays. As far as losing your skills -- you will. If you move to critical care, you will lose the time management skills that served you on Med/Surg. If you move to L & D, you'll lose your skills in male Foley insertion, feeding tube placement, etc. (Those skills are more easily re-learned should you decide to return to Med/Surg).

I've been burned out several times over the past four decades. There are less drastic ways to deal with it. Often, just changing your shift gives you a new perspective and a new appreciation for your job. Sometimes, changing floors within the facility will get you interested and excited again. Change specialties . . . from med/surg to oncology or Cardiac stepdown or OR. Sometimes nothing will work but changing facilities . . . and once I quit my job, sold my house and moved to the opposite coast. Other things that help with burnout are getting interested in precepting, scheduling committee or updating procedures on your unit. Perhaps get involved (or more involved) with your church or another organization. If you're getting satisfaction elsewhere, your job may seem less of a big deal. Take a vacation and relax, take a leave of absence to recharge your batteries.

Burnout is survivable, and you can thrive despite an episode of burnout. But figure out what your biggest stressors are and then you can figure out a way to mitigate those stressors without throwing away the baby with the bathwater.

kentnurse97

Specializes in Medical Surgical and step down units. Has 19 years experience. 5 Posts

Any education that you can get in Nurisng Education is never wasted. If you stay in Med Surge, then it is used with patient's. If you don't then maybe you could be responsible to train other nurses. Nursing is a mix of hours. It is tough if you want a life outside of Nursing. It is not conducive to family life, for the most part, and it limits church activities. Nursing is a calling. It is for me anyway, and I think back to the beginning of Nursing and we are so much better off than those nurses were during the Civil War, WWI and WWII.

Back then, many were not allowed to be married, had no say about their hours and many times left loved ones behind to perform their nursing duties. Since you are young, maybe travel nursing would be more to your liking. See the world, travel, have short term contracts and enjoy yourself until you settle down. Be sure that you get or have health insurance wherever you work. Many times, your nursing friends would like to travel also and you could make a team of it. I would hate to see you leave Nursing! It is hard, difficult, challenging work, but so worth it. I hope you find your "home" in Nursing.

Latashadudley73

2 Posts

I've been a nurse for 12 years and I still don't know what it is that I want to do. Sadly, I have changed jobs several times, which makes the next employer question my resume, but I just can't find my knack. I love psych nursing, but can't find a reputable company that will give me the salary I deserve or benefits. I also love hospital nursing, but don't want to work 12 hour shifts and weekends. I guess when you look at the grand scheme of things and the way the world is going, we should just be blessed and thankful to have a career that allows us so many choices. I count my blessings everyday when I see people at the Employment office in my town lined up out the door. You will decide what you need and want out of your career, but I do know I started as a med-surg nurse for the first 2 years and although you may forget some steps to things, you NEVER lose your skills. Good Luck!!

JVLims

35 Posts

Imho, the people recommending school or university health nursing are forgetting that you are quite new to nursing practice. These positions require the ability to function independently with a high level of autonomy, organization, and assessment skills. I hope I will not sound critical, but your BSN program should have taught you the realities of early practice in our profession. You may need to tolerate jobs with difficult hours and demanding responsibilities in order to grow in your abilities and confidence. Perhaps you should look for a large hospital system that would offer you a nurse internship program that paired you with a professional mentor.Your focus seems to be on the worklife balance issues and you have a right to seek what works best for you. I do find myself wondering a little if you actually enjoy nursing. Getting higher degrees, certifications, and licensures will not help if you dislike the core of the profession.