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Unsure nursing is for me

Career   (3,981 Views | 9 Replies)

1,360 Profile Views; 23 Posts

What do you do if you are realizing nursing is not for you? My dad has always encouraged me to become a nurse and for a long time I wanted to too. I did internships in high school that I loved so I thought that doing the nursing route in college would be the way to go. I struggled with feelings of uncertainty all throughout nursing school thinking " once I'm working I'll enjoy nursing". Well now here I am, a nurse and I'm not so sure I love it. I WANT to love it, but every time I come home from my shift I start thinking about all the things that could go wrong with the patient and what if I did something or didn't say something to them that could now cause them harm? I guess I'm just looking for some thoughts on what others have done in this situation. A part of me would feel like a failure for giving up on nursing when I've only been working for not quite a year, but a part of me just wants to be done a do something that makes me happy.

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3 Articles; 10,428 Posts; 90,278 Profile Views

It is incredibly common for new nurses to feel as you do! The first year of nursing always contains plenty of growing pains.....accompanied by tears, anxiety, fear, worry, and just about every other emotion that can come your way.

There are many career paths in nursing, as I'm sure you know. Not every nurse is going to be happy in all of them. Most are happy in one or two, some enjoy everything they ever did, but most often, it's some trial and error that gets us all to where we feel we're "supposed to be".

Right now, you're learning the ropes. Applying the theoretical knowledge you gained in nursing school, learning how to work that into real-life situations and treatments. It takes time to figure it all out, and the more you "put it together", the more valuable you will be in the future.

I expect you're working a general med-surg floor in an acute-care hospital....? If so, it's a good place to learn the ropes, figure out what is what. From there, you can explore other avenues within the hospital itself; once you are a good candidate for transfer (having had successful evaluations, etc) you can try out something else! And if the hospital where you are now doesn't have something of interest....look elsewhere.

For now, do your best to see what you're doing as a continuation of nursing school, and work it to your best learning advantage :)

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RNperdiem has 14 years experience as a RN.

1 Follower; 4,301 Posts; 30,174 Profile Views

Your feelings are pretty typical of a new grad once the newness wears off, the realization that nursing is hard kicks in, and you realize that you don't love your job.

My solution was to look for a better job once I finished my first year and a bit.

Don't be too quick to believe the "love your job". If it is a job that pays, it won't be because it is lovable. Try aiming for a job that is satisfying. A job that gives you satisfaction is a more realistic goal.

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tarotale has 1 years experience.

453 Posts; 11,233 Profile Views

honestly i don't know what kind of person would like nursing. there are people who genuinely like it i'm sure, but there are heck loads that hate it, and even more who now do it just because "they need roof under their heads and food for their children", so it's just a job, not really something they enjoy; for me, i wouldn't be doing this if i could turn the clock back to college days.

like above poster said, nursing has so many fields, and I only so far have known the bedside care. i would like to try the business/desk side of job like research, cm, ur, audit, etc just to see if i like that kind of stuff better.

you're new grad though, and you're young like me, so it's going to take time to find what you want to do; it's really rare for someone to do what they love to do as their work, really really rare. the real goal for most us is finding something you somewhat enjoy, and that is already hard enough haha. best wishes in internship

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rubato is a ASN, RN and specializes in Oncology/hematology.

1,111 Posts; 15,855 Profile Views

Normal feelings. I am 4 months into my first nursing job and rarely go home without thinking I probably missed something. Did I? Probably not. But there is a ton of self doubt at first.

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23 Posts; 1,360 Profile Views

How do we overcome this self doubt? That's the biggest thing that's eating me up inside. Any suggestions of things you've done that helps?

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firstinfamily has 33 years experience as a RN.

790 Posts; 5,733 Profile Views

Time and practice will take care of the self-doubt. Plus, look at how far you have come!!! You know more now than you did 6 months ago, so that is something to be proud of. Who are you comparing yourself to---the more seasoned nurses have learned the basics and are now progressing on with their careers. If you are looking to them for inspiration that is fine, just don't belittle yourself in the process. Do somethings for yourself---we as nurses tend to ignore the more enjoyable things that we could be doing. Life is not all work, do some fun things that you like. Any new nurse really does not begin to feel comfortable until about 5 years into the field. As far as being fearful of hurting a patient, remember all the basics you were trained in, med passes with the rights, learning how to put together the clinical picture of the patient will help you feel like you have more of a handle on things. Review your Med-surg books, look up a diagnosis of someone you took care of and see if you can correlate it all together. When looking at lab results see if you can figure out the rationale of why the labs are abnormal etc. Nursing is a challenging field, it does test everyone, prepare yourself and you will feel better about it. It will start to come together, it takes time. Hang in there!!!

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rubato is a ASN, RN and specializes in Oncology/hematology.

1,111 Posts; 15,855 Profile Views

How do we overcome this self doubt? That's the biggest thing that's eating me up inside. Any suggestions of things you've done that helps?

I guess the thing I have going for me is that I'm older. I graduated at the age of 44. Those extra years have helped me to realize that I can't do everything perfectly, no matter what. My preceptors also didn't do absolutely everything right. Better than me, of course, but not perfect. Just try to remind yourself that it all comes with time. Relax. You are doing your best as a patient advocate, and you WILL get better.

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TheCommuter has 14 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

4 Followers; 226 Articles; 27,607 Posts; 321,281 Profile Views

Well now here I am, a nurse and I'm not so sure I love it.
I'll start off by mentioning that I've never loved any job I've ever had.

Loving or hating jobs tends to follow a normal distribution pattern. I'd conjecture that about 20 percent of people deeply love their jobs; hence, these folks are positioned at the far right of the curve. Then there's the 20 percent of workers who truly hate their jobs; these people are situated at the far left of the bell curve. Finally, we've got the 60 percent of employees who fall somewhere in the middle of the bell curve, which essentially means they don't hate their current jobs but would eagerly do something else if the grass appears greener.

Due to personality issues I've never really loved any job I've ever held, nursing or non-nursing. I'm an imaginative type of person with a creative flair who prefers unstructured free time. Employment sucks up my unstructured free time, so I will never like working. Ever. My fantasy lifestyle would include two six-month paid vacations every year for life, but that remains a vivid figment of my imagination.

I report to work day after day as a means to an end and a way to support myself. Loving one's job would be ideal, but I do not have the mindset to enjoy working.

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38 Posts; 3,069 Profile Views

Hi, I am still a nursing student who is doubting her choice, I have no motivation to carry on. How do you get over this hump. I have wanted to do nursing for years but have had to put it off due to having kids etc. Any tips would be great

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