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Help...need AWAY from bedside but don't know where to go...

Nurses   (584 Views 12 Comments)

Soon2BNurse3 has 9 years experience as a ADN, RN and specializes in M/S, Tele, Sub (stepdown), Hospice.

8,365 Profile Views; 319 Posts

I've been an RN for a little over 9 years now.  I started out as a new grad at my current hospital and I've been on 3 different floors.  I've done basic med/surg, step-down unit with trachs/vents, and now I'm on a surgical step-down unit with a focus on post-op GI & cardiothoracic surgical patients.  

I remember I used to love going to work and in the last year or so I've had rollercoaster weeks where some weeks I hate my job and others I love my job.  It's only been in the last few months where there are way more lows than highs.  I work in a wealthy part of the county and I don't know if the patient population (being treated like a waitress vs a nurse, etc) is more pronounced and causing me to feel burned out but regardless, I feel like I need a change.  

I've tried taking little vacations but that burned out feeling returns quickly.  I sometimes want to go back to working at a desk Monday thru Friday, 8 hour days but I also love having a week off between 12 hour shift so then I don't think that type of nursing would work for me.  I read that the closer you are to the patient, the higher chance of burn-out.  

I've looked at jobs online but I have no idea what I would be interested in doing.  I just know I feel tired.  I am so tired of sacrificing my body and coming home physically and mentally exhausted without ever even receiving a simple thank you in one single shift.  I know I want to get away from bedside nursing - that's 100% of what I do know!

I also have a per diem job doing hospice (on call 2 nights a week & good money for a side job).  If I did take a Monday thru Friday job with a pay cut (I'd be losing night shift differential), then I'd also have to quit my per diem job and that's just not feasible for me. 

Does anybody have any experience transitioning away from bedside and if so, how did you know where you wanted to go?  Thanks!!!

 

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Nurse SMS has 8 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Critical Care; Cardiac; Professional Development.

4 Followers; 5,905 Posts; 46,925 Profile Views

I transitioned away and have been very happy. I work in professional development, so I remain in the world of acute care in a role that has me supporting all levels of the organization. I work four 10s. My body and my mind have thanked me for it.

You will need to decide what is most important to you and then make some hard decisions. I miss having a week off in between schedules on opposite ends of two weeks, but not enough to return to the bedside. That, for me, was an obvious sacrifice worth making. For you, maybe not. There isn't a right or wrong answer but there also isn't an ideal world where you have your cake and eat it too. Either way you go, you are giving some things up.

Good luck while you work it all out. There IS life away from the bedside. I found I don't need a full week off to recharge when I am not beating my body and anxiety up one side and down the other.

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meanmaryjean has 40 years experience as a DNP, RN and specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia.

3 Followers; 7,525 Posts; 64,779 Profile Views

What about making your per diem job your FT job? 

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361 Posts; 1,051 Profile Views

You don't mention what degree you have, so if you don't have a BSN, I would pursue this now, and I'd look for a program that includes public health, as that might open up public health nursing opportunities.  In my experience, most jobs away from bedside pay less than bedside overall, PLUS the loss of differential.  I have found that it is worth it.  There are so many options - working on the electronic health record system, school nursing, education, community health/public health, infection control, etc.

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KalipsoRed21 is a BSN and specializes in Currently: Home Health.

203 Posts; 4,376 Profile Views

Read Dave Ramsey’s “The total money makeover.” Revamp your budget and learn to live off of half of what you make (yes it is possible). Then your need for money won’t take over your desire to live. 

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L-ICURN has 7 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ICU.

87 Posts; 932 Profile Views

14 minutes ago, KalipsoRed21 said:

Read Dave Ramsey’s “The total money makeover.” Revamp your budget and learn to live off of half of what you make (yes it is possible). Then your need for money won’t take over your desire to live. 

I'm buying this book. I've left bedside recently for something else just to get a break. I have to learn to live with less money, but I see no reason to stay in a job that's causing physical and mental strain. 

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3 Followers; 4,407 Posts; 34,814 Profile Views

There are many options if you want to continue in Nursing.

Correctional facilities, schools - all the way from grade schools to colleges, parish nursing, cruise ship nurse, Home Health, Public Health for the state, county, city, or other government designation, Skilled Nursing, Rehab, Psych, a doctor's office or clinic, OB-Gyne, Peds, just so many choices.

Start a staffing agency or Home Health agency.

UR, QA, MDS Coordinator, Teach in a school of Nursing, get out of Nursing altogether.  Teach online.

I do not advise letting your license lapse and don't get totally out of practice.  Keep up your skills, keep abreast of new meds and equipment and procedures. 

OR, ER, check here for all the various types of Nursing there are to choose from.  Hire on with an Agency or Registry and try a couple of different types of Nursing.  Different agencies do different types of specialties.

Become an NP, CRNA, or Midwife. 

Is there another line of work you have considered besides Nursing?  Might be good to explore options.  Computers, Dental school, Law school, etc.  You get the point.  It's a big wide world, with lots of different choices.

House Sup or Manager.

Talk to a job counselor or personal counselor.  Go to your state Employment Office and talk with a career counselor.

Go to a hospital where there is a more varied clientele.  Perhaps you will find more appreciation.

Do you like talking to people, being around people?  Not everyone is a people person and that is fine.  Perhaps you would like to work where there is less interaction with people over all.  I know money is an issue, but just do some exploring and do what someone said above about learning to live on less money.

Wishing you the best.

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OUxPhys has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Cardiology.

726 Posts; 9,038 Profile Views

Plenty of options. Bedside isn't the end all/ be all. You can pursue your MSN and do education, CNS/NP/CRNA, management. You can transition to outpatient or a procedural area or the OR. You can do home health. School nurse. Case managment. You can work for insurance companies or analytics. You can go to law school and work for a law firm. You could find a job with a medical device company or pharmaceutical sales. 

There are a lot of options, it all depends on what interests you. I know Im working on transitioning to something like outpatient or a procedural area. Im also interested in case management. 

Im over doing the 3 12's in a row. The place I work at doesn't make it worth it. Ive told management that when I schedule if I am going to work 3 days in a row one of those 3 has to be an 8 (we are required to work 80 hours every 2 weeks). I refuse to work more than 3 12's in a row. 

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Kyla RN is a BSN and specializes in Research, Neurology.

7 Posts; 59 Profile Views

Look into Research Nurse positions. I am a RN Clinical Trials Coordinator. I work most M-F 8-4, but also take some on-call for acute stroke trials. I have an office, but also see patients in clinic and inpatient setting. The world of clinical trials is a beast in itself, but its exciting to participate in the newest investigative therapies. Pay can be good, especially going from 36 to 40 hours per week. I worried about the transition from 3 12s to 5 8s but theres something relaxing or reassuring (in my opinion) about being on the same schedule as the majority of the community. I worked on the floor for 3 years before my current role. As a research RN, I've also gained a lot of autonomy and independence, but have the support of my peers to fall back in if needed. Try looking for research positions in large specialty clinics and academic hospitals. 

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Been there,done that has 33 years experience as a ASN, RN.

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Nine years is plenty of experience. Check out insurance companies. Good luck.

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24 Posts; 108 Profile Views

I was forced away from the "acute-care hospital". All hospitals in my area require a BSN because all 10+ of them are magnet. When I moved to this area, I was unaware of that and could not get a job in a hospital without a BSN.  I ended up having to seek other opportunities. I was offered all sorts of different jobs from LTC, acute rehab, peds rehab (I would of loved this one, but it was nights and more long term). I ended up working at home for a telephone triage nurse line for almost 3 years before I became ill. I enjoyed the job and it was 24 hours so any shift was available and every other weekend was required which allowed for weekdays off which is what I liked. There are tons of opportunities out there. Good luck!

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