Choosing a career is a big decision that requires dedication and analysis. You have to look at various aspects before finally deciding. In the case of nurses, you must be ready for the demanding nature of this career. There can be numerous reasons for becoming a nurse. You want to excel professionally, change your career direction, or earn more money and respect. All these are effective reasons to consider if Nursing The Right Career or not.
The demand for nurses is also skyrocketing, with more patients needing patient care services for a longer period. If you get into this career, there won’t be any struggle to find the right job. Nursing is a diverse field; therefore, you might have extensively different responsibilities and duties depending on your specialization. For instance, if you aspire to become a nursing educator, your job responsibilities and work setting might differ from that of a clinical nurse. But is this job right for you? Are you cut for working long hours? These and many others are the questions you must ask yourself before committing to this profession.
Simultaneously, focus on your specializations and what you want to achieve in your career. If you are sure of what you want to achieve, you can apply for the required educational degree. For instance, for a family nurse practitioner, the right degree is the MSN-FNP program, whether online or on-campus. Similarly, for an individual interested in psychiatric and mental health, the right degree would be online PMHNP programs. However, you can also opt for an on-campus program if you are not a professional working in a clinical setting.
Now that you know the criteria, here are some questions to ask yourself to ensure if nursing is the right career for you.
- Can I work long and odd hours?- Nursing The Right Career
The first thing is to know how dedicated you are to this profession. Nursing is a demanding career; we all know that! Are you enthusiastic about doing whatever it takes to be a nurse—more precisely— can you work long hours? Often you have 12 hours long shift where you will be standing on your feet for the most part, not to mention the considerable amount of walking.
For some of you, this might be easier to accept and manage that you can be called for emergency duty or made to work longer than your shift. But for those who have a family and other responsibilities to attend to, fulfilling this requirement can be quite challenging.
- Do I really know what it is like to be a nurse?- Nursing The Right Career
In your enthusiasm to become a nurse or be part of healthcare, you might be all pumped up to become a nurse and even consent to work long shifts. But you should still know what it is like to work as a nurse or how they work. As a prospective nurse, you should volunteer in a healthcare facility and see how to treat patients. You can interact with nurses and get a firsthand experience of their job duties. This exercise will help you judge the wisdom of your decision or may lead you to consider other options.
- Do I like working with many people? – Nursing The Right Career
Nursing cannot happen in isolation; you are always dealing with people in one way or another. So, ask yourself, are you a people person? Do you like to work at a place where people from different backgrounds are thronging floors? These people are often in pain, dying, or getting some treatment. You will be treating many patients simultaneously and working with their families to give them the best treatment. Apart from patients and their families, you will work with staff, doctors, and other personnel in the hospital. If you are willing to work with people and are good at interpersonal skills, considering this profession is not a bad idea. But if you favor being in control of your work and the environment around you and tend to avoid crowds, you might need to rethink your decision.
- Have I got the right personality traits?
There are certain must-haves for the nurses to do their job efficiently. You must be able to manage stress, work under pressure, and keep calm. Nurses deal with patients who are scared, in pain, and uncertain, so they must show compassion and kindness. Apart from that, communication skills, problem-solving skills, and critical thinking abilities are necessary for someone aspiring to be a nurse. You will function with limited information, for instance, giving first aid to the patients without knowing much about their medical history. Similarly, a big part of your job is communicating with the families and doctors about changes in patient conditions. Though you can hone the skills on the job, the path becomes much more manageable if you already possess these abilities.
- Can I work well with teams?
As a nurse, you are seldom working alone. There are teams of professionals entrusted with taking care of the patients. Asking yourself about your ability to work in teams is important because some people don’t prefer to work in close quarters with others. However, working in teams is much more effective as more brains come together to pool-in ideas to provide the best care to the patients. Working with teams is much more than having a free flow of communication. You will coordinate your tasks and efforts to manage a case. Any glitch can be very costly. Therefore, you must be sure of your comfort working in such a setting.
- Can I handle fluids?
Working as a nurse means you will frequently come in contact with fluids such as vomit, blood, urine, etc. So, you have to ask yourself if you are squeamish and coming in contact with fluids is repulsive. Unfortunately, dealing with repulsive substances is a part of your job; you can neither sugarcoat nor avoid it. But if you think you will faint or have a weaker stomach, you must rethink your decision because you cannot faint in front of your patients and create new disasters.
A nurse’s job is very demanding; it requires you to dedicate long hours of studying and working tirelessly in the hospital. You will handle patients with chronic illnesses and excruciating pain. But it is lucrative, dependable, and highly attractive too. You will find ample career development opportunities. But it is also important to think about your decision from all aspects clear your ambiguities before committing to this career. After all, you will be sticking to it for the rest of your life.