I’m having a nursing career crisis!

Posted
by VaniCCRN VaniCCRN, BSN, RN (New) New Expert Nurse Student

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 8 years experience.

Nursing Career Crisis



My background:

Intensive Care Nurse with 7 years of experience. I hold my BSN and my CCRN certification. I’m 28 years old and have zero obligations or commitments. I’m not married and my partner and I don’t plan on having children/family.

I am currently in NP school (2nd semester). I am dissatisfied with my education. I chose a brick and mortar school and still I feel the education is inadequate. I’m disappointed across the board with NP education and NP job prospects. I wanted to be an NP before I even entered nursing school. I wanted to be a provider. 
 

Things I’m hating/questioning right now:

I’m fed up with the ICU. I cannot stand my nurse manager and neither can the entire unit. I’m tired of bedside at the ICU. As previously stated I’m not satisfied with NP education. I’m fearing what the future holds. NP career and title are being destroyed by diploma mills and people who truly don’t want to be providers. Any John Doe can get into an NP Program, it’s shameful. I even chose a brick and mortar program and I can still point out the deficiencies.

I feel trapped. Trapped in a graduate program I partially want to complete but partially feel is inadequate. I’m questioning the NP profession PERIOD because of future destruction of the career. I feel trapped in a job I DREAD. With a demoralizing and terrible nurse manager that isn’t going ANYWHERE. 

What do I fantasize about?
 

I often fantasize about doing research at a university. Being devoted to my studies and involved in a community of people whom actually are excited about the field!

I often think about doing research and projects to improve health of the public. I LOVE patient education. I LOVE family education. I LOVE teaching nursing students. I LOVE unpacking complex concepts. I LOVE delivering presentations. I LOVE reading about the latest EBP. I LOVE learning about research. I LOVE science. I LOVE biological sciences specifically. I LOVE data and numbers. I also aspire to be practical and develop plans of care to help my patients with their health and medical problems using my brain. 
 

I just don’t know what to do... sometimes I feel so discouraged I want to turn in the towel and quit all together.

 

 

 

Davey Do

Specializes in Psych (25 years), Medical (15 years). Has 43 years experience. 1 Article; 10,121 Posts

6 minutes ago, VaniCCRN said:

What do I fantasize about?
 

I often fantasize about doing research at a university. 

I often think about doing research and projects to improve health of the public.

Well, your history and post sure impressed the dickens out of me, Vani!

Go for it! It is your density!

Sorry. I mean destiny.

Good luck and the very very best to you!

TheMoonisMyLantern

TheMoonisMyLantern, ADN, LPN, RN

Specializes in Mental health, substance abuse, geriatrics, PCU. Has 15 years experience. 1 Article; 922 Posts

Well, the good news is you already know what you don't want to do, what you dislike, and you know what you do like. Figuring that out is half the battle!

You also have the experience and credentials to start looking at other avenues in nursing. Just reading your post I think of public health nursing, they provide a tremendous amount of education to the community and families. Another consideration is planned parenthood if you want to get into more of family planning and maternal care. Being a nurse educator in a hospital is also an idea to think about. The first cardiac dysrhythmia class I took was taught by an AMAZING nurse educator that had been an ICU nurse and she really taught the material well. Another option is to be a pharm or DME rep, you would do a lot of educating, presenting, and it's also quite lucrative (though competitive). 

If you feel this way towards your NP Program you may want to go ahead abort before you spend any more money on something you don't want to do. 

Good luck to you, don't give up on nursing just yet!

mjjg

mjjg

8 Posts

Reading your post I think education and research might be just what you're looking for! An academic doctorate (PhD) might be something to look into. 

CVVH

CVVH, MSN, RN

34 Posts

Sounds like you should look into Clinical Nurse Specialist roles.  Depending on your area, you'll find that there are either a lot of opportunities for CNS, or not that many.  You'd also have to complete a CNS program.  But the role of the CNS aligns with your interests (and, depending on the state, can also include practice as a provider, as some states give prescriptive privileges to CNS).  Perhaps being a nurse educator would also be of interest to you.  And yes, as already said, perhaps a PhD in nursing would be of interest.  Many academic medical centers have roles for nurse scientists.  My hospital has a number of nurse scientists that have joint appointments with our affiliated nursing school and the hospital, which is pretty cool.

Also, perhaps consider the feasibility of finishing your current program. It could open doors to positions/roles beyond being a provider.  I know many with NP degrees that are in management/leadership, education, etc. roles.  

Edited by CVVH

VaniCCRN

VaniCCRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 8 years experience. 12 Posts

19 hours ago, CVVH said:

Sounds like you should look into Clinical Nurse Specialist roles.  Depending on your area, you'll find that there are either a lot of opportunities for CNS, or not that many.  You'd also have to complete a CNS program.  But the role of the CNS aligns with your interests (and, depending on the state, can also include practice as a provider, as some states give prescriptive privileges to CNS).  Perhaps being a nurse educator would also be of interest to you.  And yes, as already said, perhaps a PhD in nursing would be of interest.  Many academic medical centers have roles for nurse scientists.  My hospital has a number of nurse scientists that have joint appointments with our affiliated nursing school and the hospital, which is pretty cool.

Also, perhaps consider the feasibility of finishing your current program. It could open doors to positions/roles beyond being a provider.  I know many with NP degrees that are in management/leadership, education, etc. roles.  

I thinking of following through with my program and then hoping for the best. I’m not going to limit myself to a provider position. I’ve already told myself I’m open to education/leadership and that I can always be a provider PRN. It’s not the most ideal situation, ideally if I was going for provider I’d like to submerge myself but life isn’t ideal. 
 

I’ve also considered NP fellowships. They are far and few, but they DO exist! I’ve considered hematology/oncology - as I think this field is very much cerebral. 
 

I’ve also considered non-vascular neurology.

 

As y’all can see I’m interested in a variety of things. What I am opposed to is purely ICU. Don’t get me wrong, I find the theoretical knowledge fascinating... but I am just so burned out (mind you my experience is chronic type patients in the MICU with a mix of CCU)... I’m sure some units like SICU/Trauma have less of this burn component of dealing with medical patients that are non compliant.

Maybe I need a break all together from the actual bedside/direct patient care?

 

like I said.... I’m open and receptive.

I know no position is perfect but right now I just dread life in the ICU. 
 

Also thanks to everyone that has responded!

m4howie

m4howie, ADN, BSN

Specializes in LTC, TCU, Drug Rehab, Med/Surg, ICU Stepdown. Has 8 years experience. 42 Posts

Two things to consider. 1) I am currenlty looking into getting a Phd. At the University of MN they have NP to teach some of the classes. They also help the Phd nurses with their research. So that is an option with your current. degree. 2) I work at a VA hospital. There are always new research studies. They need nurses and NPs to monitor patients. I also know medical companies like Medtronics hire nures, nps, and doctors to help them do research and develop new products like their heart valves, ventilators and other devices. You will have lots of options. I would take advantage of you time in school to talk to your teachers about how to flex your current degree into all the things you want to do. They could be your biggest assest. Take advantage of all their connections to start making some of your own. 

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 20 years experience. 4 Articles; 4,638 Posts

A friend of mine got out of bed side nursing and went to work for a company that made specialty surgical devices, My friend's job is to go to a hospital set up the device and teach the surgeon's and OR team about the device. He travels all over the country and make over 100K a year.

There are also jobs at teaching hospitals where you work with participants in medical research studies. Which always seemed fun to me!

Good luck with your job search.

Hppy