I'm a job hopper.... HELP!


  • allnurses Guide
    Specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health. Has 13 years experience.

Okay guys, be patient with me... I know I've posted on this before, but more points of view can't hurt at all, especially... since I have a job interview this coming Tuesday, that I'm not even sure that I'm even going to go to. Don't worry, I plan on letting the recruiter know, if I decide not to go. :)

I've had my current job for a year and one month now. I work in a small psychiatric hospital. I do love psych, but... I've never been crazy about working at this particular hospital; there are various issues.

The job before that, I had for a year and a half.

The job prior to THAT, I had for a year and a month; I really did actually like that job but I HAD to find one closer to home, with 12 hour shifts. This particular job only offered 8's, and it was an hour drive away.

The job prior to THAT, I had for seven years; left that hospital because I was burned out on Med/Surge and had always wanted to do Psych.

So, basically, I've had four jobs in about four years, and have been considering yet another. I really truly am VERY unhappy in my current position. I work five night shifts a week. I COULD possibly transfer to another position... but if my DON tells me when I meet with him tomorrow, that I'm stuck in that exact position for at least the next 8 months or so due to some disciplinary action which I believe I posted about previously =)... I don't know. I am very, very depressed working in this position. I have even had very fleeting suicidal thoughts, I am so depressed in this position. Don't worry, I'm fine now and I AM fine in general, but I do get extremely frustrated...

This new job... it's in a larger psych hospital, working for a reputable company in the Louisville area. It's with a patient population that I enjoy working with very much (geriatric)... my insurance looks like it will cost quite a bit more per pay period, which is a concern... it's a 12 hour shift position....

I'm truly tired of switching jobs, but I hate my current job SO, SO much that it's very tempting to bolt for this new job (which of course hasn't even been offered to me yet, but if it is...). Again, I could POSSIBLY get in a new position at my current job which would be much better hours... however, it would be day shift, which scares the bejeezus out of me... SO used to night shift, and some of the day shift folk at my workplace are not the friendliest...

Don't know what to do!!! My mom thinks I should stay put. My husband def. thinks I need to stay put. Most ppl I work with would tell me to run like the wind. My current job has the most ridiculous turnover rate that I think I've seen.

Thanks! Sorry so long...


1,459 Posts

From your thread title, you must either be doing something good or have something they want. Cos even from your vast resume, you still get employed. You'll be just fine.

You're going to be the work working there and loving or hating the job, so go with your heart.(That one will be easy:D)lol

zahryia, LPN

537 Posts

Specializes in L&D, QI, Public Health.

It's new world. If people are still willing to hire you given your 'job -hopping', then go for it. It'd be different if you were changing specialities every year, but you seem to be staying within your skill set.

You seem like the type of person who would enjoy PRN. I'm not sure what the market looks like in your area, but maybe you should check it out. If there's an insurance issue, then I guess PRN is not good for you.

bill4745, RN

874 Posts

Specializes in ICU, ER. Has 15 years experience.

I would lean toward staying put for another year. Sooner or later changing jobs every year or so is going to catch up with you. It costs a hospital a lot of money to hire and train a new person, just to have them leave a year later.


1,465 Posts

If you are truly unhappy, then you need to find something else. But be careful you don't just jump at the first thing that comes up and get stuck again in a job that makes you unhappy. And maybe that is what your husband and Mom are worried about. You seen to be changing jobs due to one issue and then finding you still aren't happy.

I think you need to just sit down and make a list of all the things you need in a new job to and then search for that.

I totally understand being unhappy in a job to the point of depression. Life is way to short to live that way.

Keep us posted and good luck.


266 Posts

You are not a job hopper.

Nursing and healthcare in general make it impossible to stay in some of these situations.

If you manage to stay in a difficult situation for a year and a half, that says a lot about you not being a job hopper right there.


520 Posts

Just about every nurse I know or work with changes jobs every few years. Especially it seems in LTC, where it is often less than a year.

Specializes in Adolescent Psych, PICU.

I honestly dont think your a job hopper. Most nurses I know dont stay at a job for much more than year. The burn out is high, there is always better pay and hours and overall opportunities the more experience you get.

To me someone would be a job hopper if they are switching jobs every 6 months or so. That is quiet different than a year+ time.


11 Posts

Has 15 years experience.

I totally understand being unhappy in a job to the point of depression. Life is way to short to live that way.

- and life's too long to live that way...

RhiaRN75, RN

119 Posts

Specializes in ER.

I scratched my itch by traveling- you may want to look into that. If you have to have a home base and stay close, you can work full time for a local agency. If there's a large enough hospital nearby you could also apply for the float pool.

Sit down and really evaluate where you have been, where you are, and where you want to be in five years. Are you running towards some ultimate goal or running away?

It sounds more like you've had four jobs in 11 years, those first seven count! It also sounds like the job you have now is not a good place to be. Money is important but sanity still ranks higher in my book. As an ex-nightowl, I can tell you dayshift really isn't that bad. Flipping phone rings all day but the rest is fine. It certainly makes the homelife easier. Night shift is funny- my body refused to run on a daytime schedule for years and then over the course of six months I realized it wasn't working anymore. My system finally turned off the night switch- no warning either- and I really feel much better working days.

As someone stated, job-hopping will catch up with you eventually. You'll run out of facilities if nothing else. So plan the next one carefully. Before the interview, know where you stand. Get the bills together, create a budget, and go to paycheck city and run the pay scenario to see if it will work. You don't want to think you can afford a paycut and then find yourself job searching again because the salary is too low. Regardless of how many jobs you've already had, the way you describe the current one makes me agree it's time to find number five. Good luck!

allnurses Guide

NurseCard, ADN

2 Articles; 2,847 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health. Has 13 years experience.

Thank you all for your thoughtful replies... Rhia...(that's not short for Rhiannon, is it?) I'm actually not truly THAT opposed to working dayshift... but... man, this is going to sound so stupid and juvenile, but... I KNOW the people who I would be working closely with, I currently work in the exact same area and... I just don't like these people. There are currently two people who work dayshift in my area who I do like, quite a bit actually... the rest of them... their attitudes BOTHER me. Many of them are young 20 somethings with BA degrees in Psych and/or Social Work, who think their poop don't stink.

I just did some more research regarding the position that I'm trying to get... and MAN it sounds pretty good. This unit is not even part of the large psychiatric hospital; rather it is housed closer to a large medical hospital that this same company owns, yet it is still MANAGED by the psychiatric hospital nursing staff. This tells me that I'm probably still going to get to do occasional medical procedures, such as IV starts, on my geriatric patients. Plus, maybe I won't get floated to the other units such as the children's unit (BLECH! That's what I do now!). Yay! =)

I'm feeling a little excited, I can't help it. I know the best thing is to stay where I am, but MAN I'm unhappy here. This hospital is just too small... well I say that, we actually hold about 100 patients, but we aren't STAFFED for that size of a hospital. This new job sounds good.

I think I'm just going to go to the interview and see how it goes. Can't hurt, can it?

RhiaRN75, RN

119 Posts

Specializes in ER.

NurseCard- I was thinking the new job/new facility was day shift. I see your point about going to days at your current facility. I don't feel your reasons are stupid or juvenile- sounds pretty reasonable to me. Life's too short to work with toxic people or in a toxic environment. I've done it and I'm all for cutting one's losses and hitting the road. I used to run away from bad situations- the proverbial jumping out of the frying pan before checking the fire- and I really wasn't satisfied with the results. It was still better then being in the pan, though. That's what I meant about running away versus running towards something.

I was raised (and then trained as a nurse), that hard work and positive attitude can change anything. Everyone's heard the story- some horrible situation existed and the positive attitude heroine saved the day! Isn't she great? It took me a while to realize it's not always my fault or my failure that some things just can't be fixed.

It sounds like your current job had problems before you started. I'd be willing to bet that whether you stay or go, in a year your current facility will still be having problems. With or without you, the place sucks either way.

When you think about your possible new job, grin and have the inner you jumping with excitement, the optimist in me says it's going to be a good thing :) That's running towards something better.

On a side note, that's my middle name. I told my mom once- what do you expect when you name your child after someone who 'takes to the sky like a bird in flight'? Not to be outwitted, she told me she expected that I build a fine nest, feather it well, and stay put like a sensible being. I told her in that case, she should have named me Hope. Constance. Dory for doormat, maybe. Anything but Rhiannon- didn't she read that story?

My Mom's awesome. We have the best debates and the weirdest conversations. Her view? Be sensible. My view? Be sensible when it's sensible to be sensible. When we're bored, we argue about whether it's really the same point of view.