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I am new to nursing but I don't want to do this anymore

First Year   (10,583 Views 45 Comments)
by newgradkat newgradkat (New Member) New Member

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subee has 45 years experience as a MSN, CRNA and works as a CRNA, retired.

38 Likes; 1 Follower; 17,447 Visitors; 1,650 Posts

You either love nursing or you don't. Loving it doesn't make it easy. But if you are not called to it please leave. Very difficult decision to make for many nurses. Why did you become a nurse in the first place? If it was for convenience, money, or status, forget it. You have to love your patient (and their families) and be willing to show up, serve their needs, and forget about yourself (to a large extent). If you can't do this move on. Blessings....

One does not need to be "called" to nursing. We don't come from the nunneries anymore. I chose nursing because I loved the science of it and had no idea of the amount of compassion I had to summon to mature my practice. And no, you don't have to love your patients or their families. We don't have to practice nursing as a result of any religious obligation. I can have compassion for jerks because I know they are very limited people and I can also treat them politely but I don't have to LOVE them to be a good nurse.

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SobreRN works as a RN.

6 Likes; 4,627 Visitors; 461 Posts

I'm working on a tele/med surg floor. I just feel like I get overwhelmed by the workload, even though the most Ive had is 5 patients, since most of my patients have a high acuity. Some days I have left work feeling satisfied with my self and some I feel like I didn't do my best job because of how busy I am. When I get home I over think everything and I'm not able to sleep. I really do hope I'm just feeling this way because I'm new and not because this isn't for me.

You are new and this is normal. Patients are much higher acuity, when I was new they stayed 3 days for a chole and I felt overwhelmed all of the time.

Try to take it a day at a time and know it gets better.

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1 Like; 1,334 Visitors; 127 Posts

You have lifted my spirit too! Thank you!

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1 Like; 1,334 Visitors; 127 Posts

The way you are feeling is not abnormal for the amount of experience you had. I cried in the shower before going to work for 2 years. If you feel like there is more to do than you can handle, well there is. Hardest thing to learn in nursing is triaging. You are not going to get everything done. You need to prioritize. Stat orders first, visualizing all of your patients every 2-3 hours so you know they aren't in trouble or in unbearable pain. If you have to leave a patient in their own feces for an hour because your aids are busy and you are in the process of administering all your insulins before lunch. Well that is what you have to do. You aren't going to feel good about that, none of us do. All you can do is keep eyeing your aides to see if they can get in there and putting that as your next task after safely doing your insulin. And if you are in cleaning that patient and only half way done when the secretary buzzes in the room or calls you on your phone to tell you that your other patient down the hall was just found unresponsive, you may have to take a pillow case throw it over the poop, lay the patient back in it, put the bed down, this their covers over them and make sure they have their call light and leave. It really, really, really sucks to have to disappoint patients, because you care. You don't really ever get over this, you just kind of come to a realization that you are doing the best you can to keep everyone safe, out of pain, and clean and comfortable. I would suggest you hang in there for another 6 months or a year before you decide to get out of nursing, it does get easier once you get your time management down. But I would also tell you to go ahead and put out your resume on zip recruiter. Like don't write it as a nurse, list all your skills that you have to do as a nurse : good with time management, work independently as part of a team, good phone etiquette, etc. but don't make nursing your only marketable quality. Because it is easy to get cornered in nursing so getting out early on is a good idea. Also realize that you will be, most likely, taking a pay cut initially to get out of nursing. But yes, it is worth it to not feel sick all the time. Also nursing pay stagnates and so in 10 years you will be making pretty much the same amount of money that you did when you started unless you go into management. I would also suggest home care and doctor's offices, less stressful but the pay is again crappy. You will not find help on this website about non nursing jobs with nursing degrees because we are all employed as nurses here. We don't know what else to do or we would have gotten out a long time ago too...well about half of us anyway.

You have lifted my spirit too! Thank you! I am new RN BSN and have graduated 10 years ago from a foreign country and I am also looking for a job to have a good start. They said, apply in Senior Living or Assisted Living. There's also a Clinic and a Small community hospital here. I trained in my home country as a Dialysis Nurse but after the training they offered me a Management position.Then I never had a hands on experience. Please advice. Thank you!

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4 Visitors; 2 Posts

Keep your head up! That is the exact type of floor I work on. I've been there for 1.5 years. I felt so defeated many days, especially at first. The best advice I can give you, is don't quit and to find someone and talk about it. I can guarantee that every single nurse you work w has felt the same way! I've learned to love the fast pace. Speak up too. Talk to your manager about what your feeling. Talk to new nurses. Ask others how they manage their time. I've picked up some tricks that way. I still feel like you do at times, but I also reflect on what I've learned and I'm astonished I got here. Having the cardiac/tele experience is great on your resume; recruiters love to see it! You got this, I promise.

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Sounds like you work on my floor! Those days you feel good about, they will come more frequently! Like I said in my previous response, I've been there 1.5 years and I still feel that way at times. It just means your a good nurse! I was told that's what puts me on top of others. I ask a lot of questions and no longer feel dumb for doing so. I volunteer to help/observe w anything I can. That way when it happens to me, it's not brand new. Please stick it out at least the year! I promise it gets better!

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HomeBound has 20 years experience.

292 Likes; 1 Follower; 734 Visitors; 149 Posts

The previous posters are correct--it takes 1-2 years to hit your stride---or not. You won't know until you give nursing enough time.

And it may not even be nursing itself that you don't like, as some have pointed out. It may be the unit. Or the people in that unit, that make things miserable for you. Your choices are manifold once you get the "magic year" done.

Honestly---nursing is a lot like high school or college. You have to go through one year. No matter what. You can't jump around in your first year, because it makes you look entitled (to a perfect job) or irresponsible (you can't commit to a job) or unskilled (you get driven out of jobs) or unlikable (bad fit for your colleagues or your patients).

It doesn't matter, dear. It really doesn't, what you do in that first year. Just get through it. It would be amazingly awesomely unicorn-y of you if you just hit the first day and fell in love with nursing. That rarely happens. It could be any number of reasons alone, or a combo of them that makes the first year kinda miserable.

Once you get your year, for some reason, 365 +1 day---you are all of a sudden seen differently. It's weird. Like when I got my CEN. All of a sudden...I'm an "expert". Ah, no. I was the same nurse the day prior to the exam as I was the day after I passed. When you're a new grad, Day 2 is VERY different than Day 365.

Once Day 365 hits, you can make more informed decisions. Is it the unit? Is it your colleagues? Is it acute vs. LTC vs. outpatient vs. HH vs.....a million other directions you could go in nursing? Is it that you hate working with humans?

You can't know at 4 months in, or even 9 months in. I didn't know I would stay or go until after 3 years. Some DO know within a few months that this isn't for them---and ALL ALTERNATIVES have been exhausted---such as....have you gone to your NM and expressed your feelings? Perhaps the unit you are on isn't what speaks to you. Maybe they can find another place for you that may be a better fit without chucking your nursing education out the window.

There are many here like me---we are second careerists. We have a baseline of what it was like "out there" in another field. Nursing is one of the only fields that you can go in with a two year degree---and make twice what the national minimum wage is (unless you are in the south *coughcough*) and then go on to make 6 figures in a very short period of time if you pay attention. You can get out of bedside after your first year if that is what you want.

My very first preceptor ever---took us on a tour of all of the departments in my huge 1000+ bed hospital that employed nurses. And I was....stunned. He said, "if you don't like bedside...that isn't your only option. keep an open mind." He was a battle hardened Army Medic, ED/MICU, teacher/mentor---and he ended up in Aphoresis. It all what you make of it, and bedside is NOT the only nursing out there.

Just get the first year done. You have a wealth of options after that magic 365 hits. Hang in there.

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Alex_RN has 3 years experience and works as a RN.

11 Likes; 3,472 Visitors; 305 Posts

I used to dread going to work my first year. I lived where it was hard to find a new grad job so I just powered through. I did not consider other options because I knew I had to succeed. Now I am perfectly happy in my work. Hang in there!

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On 12/22/2018 at 2:27 PM, HomeBound said:

The previous posters are correct--it takes 1-2 years to hit your stride---or not. You won't know until you give nursing enough time.

And it may not even be nursing itself that you don't like, as some have pointed out. It may be the unit. Or the people in that unit, that make things miserable for you. Your choices are manifold once you get the "magic year" done.

Honestly---nursing is a lot like high school or college. You have to go through one year. No matter what. You can't jump around in your first year, because it makes you look entitled (to a perfect job) or irresponsible (you can't commit to a job) or unskilled (you get driven out of jobs) or unlikable (bad fit for your colleagues or your patients).

It doesn't matter, dear. It really doesn't, what you do in that first year. Just get through it. It would be amazingly awesomely unicorn-y of you if you just hit the first day and fell in love with nursing. That rarely happens. It could be any number of reasons alone, or a combo of them that makes the first year kinda miserable.

Once you get your year, for some reason, 365 +1 day---you are all of a sudden seen differently. It's weird. Like when I got my CEN. All of a sudden...I'm an "expert". Ah, no. I was the same nurse the day prior to the exam as I was the day after I passed. When you're a new grad, Day 2 is VERY different than Day 365.

Once Day 365 hits, you can make more informed decisions. Is it the unit? Is it your colleagues? Is it acute vs. LTC vs. outpatient vs. HH vs.....a million other directions you could go in nursing? Is it that you hate working with humans?

You can't know at 4 months in, or even 9 months in. I didn't know I would stay or go until after 3 years. Some DO know within a few months that this isn't for them---and ALL ALTERNATIVES have been exhausted---such as....have you gone to your NM and expressed your feelings? Perhaps the unit you are on isn't what speaks to you. Maybe they can find another place for you that may be a better fit without chucking your nursing education out the window.

There are many here like me---we are second careerists. We have a baseline of what it was like "out there" in another field. Nursing is one of the only fields that you can go in with a two year degree---and make twice what the national minimum wage is (unless you are in the south *coughcough*) and then go on to make 6 figures in a very short period of time if you pay attention. You can get out of bedside after your first year if that is what you want.

My very first preceptor ever---took us on a tour of all of the departments in my huge 1000+ bed hospital that employed nurses. And I was....stunned. He said, "if you don't like bedside...that isn't your only option. keep an open mind." He was a battle hardened Army Medic, ED/MICU, teacher/mentor---and he ended up in Aphoresis. It all what you make of it, and bedside is NOT the only nursing out there.

Just get the first year done. You have a wealth of options after that magic 365 hits. Hang in there.

Thank you so much! I am trying really hard to keep going. I just hit my 6 months. I think it’s just the unit that I’m on that’s really stressful. I love working with people and I love seeing my patients get better and go home. I think the workload is just way too heavy. My unit is mainly liver, so we are always giving blood and dealing with confused patients. I’m really thinking of looking for a clinic job, I’ve been trying to look but no luck yet. 

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