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How to be sure I want to be a nurse

by WJSmith WJSmith (New) New Pre-Student

Specializes in Certified pharmacy tech.

I'd like some guidance from current nurses as I think of pursuing a nursing career. I started working as a hospital unit coordinator in 2016, then switched to pharmacy in 2018. I love healthcare and enjoy my job as a certified pharmacy tech. I work in sterile compounding making IV's most of the time. I'm happy where I am but not sure I want to spend the next 30 years in a field where there's not much opportunity for growth.

Recently I've considered going to nursing school, but I'm scared of making such a big decision. In my time as a unit coordinator I saw enough of what nurses put up with to make me think I couldn't handle it. I've been told by others that I have many strong qualities such as reliability, integrity, a good work ethic, and ability to learn quickly. I love learning and would especially enjoy the science of nursing. However, I identify as an introvert and the part of relating to people is what scares me when I think of being a nurse. I think this is something I could work on and maybe overcome, but I'm quiet, shy, and not good at small talk. I hate conflict and try to avoid it. I've seen firsthand how nurses have to deal with demanding patients, angry family members, and rude, arrogant doctors. That makes me cringe.

Would I be able to handle being a nurse? Or am I better off staying where I am? I keep coming back to the fact that there are so many areas a nurse can work in and I wouldn't necessarily have to be a bedside nurse. I do think I have some qualities that would make me a good nurse, such as organization skills and attention to detail. I'm terrified of making that decision though. I don't want to start nursing school and realize I made a mistake. Does anyone have advice to share?

Rose_Queen, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in OR, education. Has 16 years experience.

4 minutes ago, WJSmith said:

there are so many areas a nurse can work in and I wouldn't necessarily have to be a bedside nurse.

However, those non-bedside nurse positions tend to require experience... at the bedside.

What matters is what you want to do. Do you have an interest in nursing? Are you only considering it because of what you've been told by others? The only one who can truly decide if you can handle being a nurse or if you should stay where you are is you. See if it's possible to spend time shadowing a nurse (it may be a while until that can be a reality), apply for a job as a CNA (much more patient centered than a UC) to get your feet wet in the patient care field and see how that goes.