would love to be nurse, but a bit anti-social

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Hello,

I am interested in maybe looking into nursing, obviously for benefits and furthering my eduction purposes. I currently have a pretty good job(2). I am not complaining, but I would be making more money in the nursing field. I have one problem....I am a bit anti-social. Not to abuse the word, but I just don't like working with some people...I can handle situations very well. I tend to handle them sometimes by avoiding the situation of confrontations..I know with nursing I would have to face them head on. I mean I have over 10 years experience in customer service. I also like the fact with my desk job I can stay "to myself" and out of the mix...of confussion. As with being a nurse I would have to constantly be AROUND my co-workers a lot.. This is one of the things I am not use to doing. I also have a skin condition some of you know as NF1. It's not that bad, but somewhat noticeable. I know a lot about neurofibromatosis..this is another reason I would like to go into nursing...I catch on very quickly and have a desire to someday maybe find a cure to treat the mutant gene on chromosone 17 that is responsible for NF-1. i just can not get past working with sooooo many different people. I use to a very sociable person. I guess i am getting older (late 20's) and can not stand trouble or confussion. Don't get me wrong...I can handle and deal with it , but I just don't wish to experience the situations that come along with interreacting with some people. I had (have) this one job where before I worked there I never knew such STRANGE people actually existed. On a positive side it has taught me to handle situations I would not have otherwise experienced unless I worked there. HOwever, I guess it has made me want to draw that further away from certain people. I want to make communication my major when I go back to school. I really want to learn sign language.. I have a lot of potential I just need to get past this....about people. I

Anyone know of any nurses that are anti-social? Any advice would be appreciated. Sorry for such long post.

Specializes in LTC.

I'm not a nurse...yet. Right now I'm a nurses aide in a nursing home. I'm about to go to nursing school (hopefully, waiting on my acceptance letter). I'm scared because I've worked at this nursing home for the last 4-5 years and going to nursing school means doing clinicals in places in which I'm not comfortable. But I'm jumping in. I'm really shy and anti-social and when I tell people they laugh because they think I'm so outgoing but I'm not. One nurse told me that she can tell I'm shy and anti-social but that I don't let people know it and I don't let it hold me back. I thinkt that if you want to do this, then do it. Don't let your anti-social-ness hold you back, jump in with both feet. If you don't do it you'll always wonder if you coulda woulda shoulda.

CuriousMe

2,642 Posts

Hello,

I am interested in maybe looking into nursing, obviously for benefits and furthering my eduction purposes. I currently have a pretty good job(2). I am not complaining, but I would be making more money in the nursing field. I have one problem....I am a bit anti-social. Not to abuse the word, but I just don't like working with some people...I can handle situations very well. I tend to handle them sometimes by avoiding the situation of confrontations..I know with nursing I would have to face them head on. I mean I have over 10 years experience in customer service. I also like the fact with my desk job I can stay "to myself" and out of the mix...of confussion. As with being a nurse I would have to constantly be AROUND my co-workers a lot.. This is one of the things I am not use to doing. I also have a skin condition some of you know as NF1. It's not that bad, but somewhat noticeable. I know a lot about neurofibromatosis..this is another reason I would like to go into nursing...I catch on very quickly and have a desire to someday maybe find a cure to treat the mutant gene on chromosone 17 that is responsible for NF-1. i just can not get past working with sooooo many different people. I use to a very sociable person. I guess i am getting older (late 20's) and can not stand trouble or confussion. Don't get me wrong...I can handle and deal with it , but I just don't wish to experience the situations that come along with interreacting with some people. I had (have) this one job where before I worked there I never knew such STRANGE people actually existed. On a positive side it has taught me to handle situations I would not have otherwise experienced unless I worked there. HOwever, I guess it has made me want to draw that further away from certain people. I want to make communication my major when I go back to school. I really want to learn sign language.. I have a lot of potential I just need to get past this....about people. I

Anyone know of any nurses that are anti-social? Any advice would be appreciated. Sorry for such long post.

I guess I don't really understand your definition of anti-social....because if recognizing that there are folks I'd rather not work with is anti-social.....I'm pretty sure everyone is anti-social.

The reality is that there are very few professions in the world where you don't work with people. Whenever you work with people, there are ALWAYS going to be people you wish you didn't have to work with. Most of us, just put our big girl panties on and get over it.

The thing that concerns me is that you say you're very good at handling situations, but then go on to say that you handle them by avoiding the situations....that's not handling, that's waiting for someone else to handle them. As you've recognized, that won't even work in nursing school, never mind in nursing.

I think maybe two things would be helpful. The first is to think about what kind of work situation would really make you happy....if you do anything in the world, what would it be...where would you do it?

The other thing I recommend is to shadow a nurse for a day. Now it doesn't have to be in a hospital, if that's not where you want to work....but whatever kind of nursing you think you'd like to do....see if you can find a nurse doing that and shadow them for the day. That way you have more of an idea of what you may and may not like about that job.

I wish you the best of luck!

Specializes in Acute Care Psych, DNP Student.

You might want to distinguish "anti-social" from being reluctant to engage in too much social activity and introversion. Technically, anti-social personality types are people like Bernie Madoff and Ted Bundy - people who do not follow society's rules and lack a conscience.

I think you are indicating you are an introvert (drained by too much interaction with others), and you are concerned about how this would mesh with a nursing career? Yes?

I think we've had conversations like this one before, here on the board. We have many nursing members who are introverts. It may impact your career choices, though, and wisely so.

AOx1

961 Posts

Specializes in ER, ICU, Education.

I definitely don't think that would exclude you from pursuing this career. Although I "talk" a lot on this board (probably too much!) I am by nature an introvert and prefer to spend most of my time alone or with my spouse. I am a Myer's-Briggs INFJ- it's not that I hate people at all, just that I need to be alone and prefer my own company, as arrogant as that sounds.

Yet, of all things, I am a nursing instructor. I have no issues whatsoever with getting in front of a group. I have great students that I trust and have faith in. That said, I regularly do things alone to "recharge" so to speak. It is the same way in nursing. Luckily, my spouse, a complete extrovert, is completely understanding and realizes that I will be fine if allowed a tiny bit of me time (sometimes just on the drive back from the hospital) before I face home and more interaction.

You just have to come to an understanding that you may need some "decompression" time especially after a bad day where every one of your patients seems needy to be alone. If you do that, you should be just fine! "My time" is my daily workout. My students know who I am at heart and as a joke bought me a "go away" sign!!!!

i'm not much of a joiner, mostly an introvert, though i do actually like people. i like being alone, it keeps me centered and balanced. nurses have to be able to work independently, but they also need to know when to ask for help, advice, and to recognize their own strengths and weaknesses.

you don't get to choose who you work with, you don't have a choice of your assigned patients either once you've picked where you want to work (ie er, ob, med-surg). when i take my 30 minutes in clinicals, i eat and prefer not to talk about clinical things. i use that time to regroup my mind and recenter myself.

it becomes a balancing act of being friendly enough to not seem stand-offish and not getting sucked into other people's drama; sharing enough of your personal life without it interfering with your professionalism. (everyone was excited for me and my new puppy, they didn't need to know about the fight my hubby and i had last week.)

elkpark

14,633 Posts

Welcome to allnurses! :balloons:

I'm not one of those nurses who thinks that everyone should want to be a nurse. Nursing is certainly not for everyone! Yes, the vast majority of nursing jobs involve working with a wide range of people, that you don't get to choose, most of them at their worst while you're interacting with them (being sick enough to be in the hospital is, by definition, a crisis situation), and constant change and confusion. I would encourage you to spend some real time volunteering in a hospital or working as a CNA, and observing the nurses "first hand" before making a decision to pursue nursing. There are lots of nursing jobs that don't involve direct patient care and busy, hectic environments, but those positions typically require a significant amount of clinical experience in order to be eligible/qualified.

Since you mention that a primary motivation for you is working on NF research, have you considered a different route to that end? You could do degrees in a "hard science" and get into research from that direction. You might be a lot more comfortable working in a research lab which is a more controlled, calm environment with limited personnel (working by yourself or as part of a small team).

College/university career offices and private, community career counseling firms often offer a battery of "aptitude"-type tests and counseling re: the results that can help clarify what types of employment you are best suited to, based on your personality and interests. Often, they are not v. expensive (or even free, depending on who's offering them) and can point you toward a lot of opportunities you may not have even considered. That is another option worth considering.

Best wishes for your journey!

mariasmomma

25 Posts

If you have such an interest in NF-1, I would definitely suggest looking into doing a Ph.D. I work in neuroscience research right now and it sounds like research would really suit you. Find several Principle investigators doing the type of research you're interested in, and apply to their Ph.D programs. The classes are difficult, but you will eventually do your own research project that you design (with help) and your entire career could be devoted to helping those with NF-1. I'm not a nurse but this caught my eye and I do have the research background. Let me know if you have any questions about it! Best of luck!!

NeoNurseTX, RN

1,803 Posts

Specializes in NICU Level III.

I was never a very sociable person with strangers until nursing school. Then I HAD to be or pretty much would have to pick a new career. I'm still shy but I force myself to be sociable. It's definitely doable. I'm still socially awkward, I think.

twow

60 Posts

so much misuse of the word antisocial in here. conmen, murderers, and nursing instructors, especially clincial instructors, are antisocial. the behavior described in this thread is not.

but anyway, how could you stand being a nurse if you don't like working with people or have poor social skills or whatever? my guess is it would be torture for you.

californiasky

20 Posts

I've always kind of laughed about how anti-social I am (luckily I've got a few good friends and a gf who are the same way).. When it comes to meeting new people, it can take a while for me to feel comfortable joking around them or just opening my mouth more often. Certainly not because I don't like people.. I'm just a quiet person, and I can definitely relate to needing time alone to "recharge" and center myself, as one post mentioned.

However, nursing is something I believe I really want to do. If this were a different profession, something that I had less passion about, then I could see my shyness being a problem. I think it just depends how much you want it and enjoy helping others. I was extremely nervous about talking to patients and staff when I first began volunteering in a hospital ED, but after a few weeks I felt pretty much at home. Just remember that being sociable is often times a learned skill, something that you CAN improve with practice. If you think nursing is good for you, then I suggest volunteering a bit, to confirm your thoughts, before investing so much money on school, and don't let shyness stop you..

On the other hand, another post mentioned something about a research position. If you mostly want to focus on finding cures or new treatments, then this may be a good option to look into.

Best of luck!

Ms Li

2 Posts

I guess I don't really understand your definition of anti-social....because if recognizing that there are folks I'd rather not work with is anti-social.....I'm pretty sure everyone is anti-social.

The reality is that there are very few professions in the world where you don't work with people. Whenever you work with people, there are ALWAYS going to be people you wish you didn't have to work with. Most of us, just put our big girl panties on and get over it.

The thing that concerns me is that you say you're very good at handling situations, but then go on to say that you handle them by avoiding the situations....that's not handling, that's waiting for someone else to handle them. As you've recognized, that won't even work in nursing school, never mind in nursing.

I think maybe two things would be helpful. The first is to think about what kind of work situation would really make you happy....if you do anything in the world, what would it be...where would you do it?

The other thing I recommend is to shadow a nurse for a day. Now it doesn't have to be in a hospital, if that's not where you want to work....but whatever kind of nursing you think you'd like to do....see if you can find a nurse doing that and shadow them for the day. That way you have more of an idea of what you may and may not like about that job.

I wish you the best of luck!

I think you may have misunderstood me.

When I say I know how to deal with the situation, but perfer not to....I didn't mean being lazy and leaving work for others..I meant I just don't like or carter to DRAMA!! For example I was helping a customer and she clearly was done with me assisting her. In fact she moved on to look at other items in the store. Five minutes later she apporoached me and said "why did you leave me?" I told her "i thought i had helped her with everything she needed" She said, " I am not done yet" (really mean)....So I said , Mam, you are looking for an argument and I am not giving it to you" and walked away...She keep on yelling," iam not looking for a argument", I walked to the back room and eventually she left the store. It takes two to argue and I was not going to allow her to start an argument with me. So you see, I handle situations very well, I just perfer to take the "no drama please" apporoach. I am a diligent worker and take my job duties seriously...When I have a job to accomplish I finish, I would never leave it for someone else to handle.

Thank you all for your responses.

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