Why nursing?

Nurses General Nursing

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Hi, I am a student waiting to get into a nursing program. I thought nursing was a good job to have because of the high demand, pay, and hours. What I have been reading on other posts is making me believe otherwise. Now, I am questioning if nursing is the right career choice for me. My question to nurses is why they like or dislike their job?

Thanks everyone!!!

sam18 said:
Hi, I am a student waiting to get into a nursing program. I thought nursing was a good job to have because of the high demand, pay, and hours. What I have been reading on other posts is making me believe otherwise. Now, I am questioning if nursing is the right career choice for me. My question to nurses is why they like or dislike their job?

Thanks everyone!!! :icon_hug:

What I like about my job (in addition to the things you point out):

- I have the ability to help people when they need it the most.

- I have a high degree of autonomy relative to the amount of education.

The hard part:

- Sometimes it's really tough to get everything done in one shift, leaving me with the feeling that I'm not providing good care.

Keep in mind that much of what you read on the site is venting from veteran nurses who do enjoy most aspects of their jobs.

Being a nurse is really tough.

In today's economy, when there's a shortage of any kind of worker, it's usually because the job is very diificult for many reasons, such as nursing.

Is there high pay and plenty of jobs? Not always. There are pockets in the US of nursing surplus where nurses cannot find jobs. Where I live is one such area. This is why I am a traveler.

The good hours? I didn't think that working anytime around the clock and a lot of holidays and weekends was considered good hours?:confused:

Do I love being a nurse? No.

Nursing is, however, very important to me in a way that I can't explain.

Hey if reading these posts scare you, wait 'till you are out on the floor, only kidding, sort of.As I told my daughter who is an RN in the Navy, when you get out of the Navy find a job at a UNIONIZED hospital or nursing home.Nursing is a noble profession that has been turned into something else entirely by greedy , unscrupulous folks, so do what you love,BUT get PROTECTION.

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac.

Welcome to Allnurses.

I enjoy the pay, benefits and the hours. There's a lot of stress and things I don't like, like the pay, benefits, and hours. LOL

I love helping people get well, I love it when I recognize something based on my assessment skills, knowledge of patho. sciences, etc. and make a difference.

Specializes in Education, Acute, Med/Surg, Tele, etc.

I was always medically minded...LOL, just too bad I enjoyed helping animals far more than people! LOL! But I was offered a grant for RN school and took it. I did very well and knew I could do it. The pay is awesome, and there is flexibility if one seeks it out.

However, I did recent take stock of my career and pondered to myself "why did I pick a career that will always be full of stress and emotions...pretty much not my definition of a career where hopefully I will be sitting at a desk respected and have others working with me?" I guess I had always pictured myself being in a leadership role that someday would allow me to work either from home or have more time with my family eventually.

Well..you can do it in nursing...but most of the administration I see are stressed to the max too...having to do so much PR and meetings and such that I don't see them spending much time with their families either. Uhggg!

So I am starting a new mindset of exploring ideas to make my goals of having a position where I can also have family time and not be breaking my back till I retire! It may require a switch from nursing...I just don't know yet...but I don't want to be a floor nurse till I retire, not all that excited about management or admin...so hmmmmmm...lots of things to think about.

You start wondering when you start..and believe me..you continue to wonder why when you are an RN too...it is just a part of taking stock of your life and making plans to pursue your goals. Nursing is fitting in well for now, and for the next 5-10 years..but I just don't see me doing it for longer than that... The trick is to be honest with yourself and make goals that are obtainable and in your best interest and be willing to change as needed..and that goes with any job!

Good luck to you!

sam18 said:
Hi, I am a student waiting to get into a nursing program. I thought nursing was a good job to have because of the high demand, pay, and hours.

Those reasons may not be enough to even make it through school. Think it over. I have met many of what I'd call guaranteed survivors. They have pre-guaranteed their survival in any school or job setting because they are crazy to be nurses. They will do whatever it takes, and they won't accept anything less from life. Even if you don't have this attitude now you can work to acquire it. I got mine by having nursing heroes. The first ones were the nurses who kept my father human while he was dying. They saw who he was inside and related to that, not his disease. His doctor, on the other hand, was a jerk. As soon as we got to the hospital, the doctor screamed at me and Mom and her sis that Dad was "terminal, he's going to die" and he was going down the hall to prepare a massive morphine infusion so he would never wake up, and he turned his back on us and started walking. I yelled "You'll do no such thing." I'm loud. Then he started screaming how it was cruel to let him live, etc. and I told him I knew it wasn't Dad's time, he had unfinished business (which he did, when the people he loved and who loved him flew in from all over to spend time with him, this took a month, then at dawn one day he told me to call Mom and that's when I knew his business was finished). So I was feeling pretty bad. Then I met the oncology nurses. Very simply, they kept Dad being Dad. So those were my first heroes. Since then, I have adopted numerous nursing heroes. It doesn't matter if they have some flaw or flaws so long as they have something I want to emulate. Also reading can help. "From Novice to Expert" really got me fired up (eventually I got to meet Pat Benner and she is awesome in person). But it is the same as anything you want to do. You know yourself better than anyone on the planet. If you're not on fire already, if you want to succeed, you will have to make a plan to fire yourself up and plan how you're going to sustain the fire.

Specializes in Critical Care, Cardiothoracics, VADs.

Err... don't do it for the pay!!! (Are you kidding?)

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

If you are going into nursing solely for the attraction of the money, it's the wrong reason. I went into nursing because I needed to be doing something where I felt like I was making a difference in people's lives as well as being productive. I can't stand sitting around and doing nothing. Well, there's certainly no sitting around in nursing. It helps to be a workaholic. Having a touch of attention deficit doesn't hurt either. Multi-tasking is a regular activity. I have learned so much about prioritizing and organizing that I KNOW that I could supervise and manage in probably any other career due to what I've learned from my work in nursing. Nurses are leaders and supervisors of patient care and those who give the care to patients. If you have any other idea about the career than you need to take another look at what nurses do and re-think if it's what you want to do. Those great wages we earn are for our ability to think and make judgments, not for fluffing pillows and giving back rubs.

I don't believe that the pay is nearly enough compensation for the responsibility and hard work that nursing entails. On a good day, I do the work of at least two nurses and sometimes several other people as well (housekeeping, clerk, tech, etc.). Not to mention that I could very easily harm or kill a patient if I am not on top of my game. All this and I make about the same amount of money or less as my friends who majored in business and education.

As far as the hours go, I do not consider working grueling 12-hour shifts, evenings/nights, weekends, and holidays to be good hours. I'm sure there are working situations out there where you could have more control over the hours you work, such as if you are working contingent. However, you have to be able to afford to work contingent (no benefits, less hours to choose from, etc.).

Despite all this, many people do find personal satisfaction in nursing. It can be satisfying to provide care to people when they are in need. There are also a lot of options in nursing. I would recommend that you shadow some nurses before making a decision. I always tell people that I wouldn't recommend nursing unless they have a realistic understanding of what the job entails, they truly have their heart set on it, and can't imagine doing anything else.

Unfortunately, every career has its downside and those in it would most likely complain about stress, poor pay, bad hours, etc. I guess this is a part of human nature's "wanting and looking for something better" kinda thing.

Many nurses I know ask me, "why nursing???" as if I were crazy. I had to point out the complaints about my last job of 11 years (10-12 hrs, 5-7 days/week, no OT, HIGH stress, individual health coverage ONLY, poor salary, etc.). In my last job, I truly believed in what I was doing. I feel this more-so with nursing because the results of your work are almost immediate when compared to my last job. As for the high stress, at least it's only for 36-40 hours, normally. Anything after that, I get extra.

Coming from another job perspective, I think my move into nursing was a great idea.

Hey everyone...Thanks for replying to my post. I appreciate all the info everyone has given to me. ?

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