When you think about it, nursing is one of the most important jobs in healthcare. After all, without nurses, doctors wouldn’t be able to do everything they do. Without nurses, patients would have no one to talk to. Without nurses, fewer people would be treated. All in all, nurses make a massive difference, and whether they’re saving a life or talking to a lonely patient, it’s all just as vital. Moreover, it’s a massively rewarding job.
It’s no wonder, then, that nursing is such a popular choice for a lot of people. Yet, although they might think they like the idea of becoming a nurse, it’s crucial they do their research. Nursing is not something that will suit everyone, so knowing just what to expect from your career in nursing is the first step – until you are armed with this information, you will never know whether nursing is a good or bad path to take. So read on to find out more about what nursing entails, and you’ll be better equipped to make the right decision for your career and your life in general.
If you say you want to become a nurse, that’s a good start, but the truth is that this isn’t enough; there are countless choices when it comes to nursing, and depending on your ultimate medical interests, where you see your career going, and what you want to achieve – as well as what skills you have that you can use in your working life – you can narrow down your nursing career to a specific type of nurse, working in a particular medical setting, helping certain types of people.
Nurses are needed in all different areas of medicine, from busy hospital ERs and operating rooms to country doctors’ practices and even schools and prisons. No matter where your skills lie or what you want to achieve, nursing will allow for it to happen. The only catch is that you’ll need to make a lot of decisions during your career until you find the ideal place for you. Getting your RN is the first step, and then you can start thinking about what you want to do next; you might research what nurse practitioners do in their daily jobs or why working in a cancer ward is a rewarding place to be, for example. Having a lot of choices is no bad thing; it means you’ll find a good job no matter where your interests lie.
When you are a nurse, you can – for the most part – expect good pay. Of course, this will depend on how qualified you are, where you are working, and what kind of nurse you are, but the average salary of a nurse in the USA is $36.97 an hour. So, the more qualified you are, the more you’ll be paid (although, of course, you’ll have a lot more responsibilities as well).
As demand for good nurses rises, so too should the salaries associated with those jobs. This means that, whereas in the past, it might have felt as though nurses were severely underpaid for the amount of work they do and the effort they have to put in each day, now things are a lot fairer. In addition, the more nurses there are, the greater say they will have in things like salary and working hours, which means things will get even better.
Lots Of Communication
If you are the kind of person who loves to talk to people and interact as much as possible, then nursing is going to suit you well. On the other hand, if you’re a shyer kind of person who is very much an introvert, then you might feel differently. This is because one of the important things to remember when you are a nurse is that you will need to be able to communicate well with a lot of people daily. You need to expect to be doing this throughout your working day, and that means that if you don’t like talking to people or interacting with the general public, being a nurse might not work for you.
Of course, you can still work in healthcare and not have to deal with the public or even many colleagues – dozens of different careers allow for this – but a nurse in a hospital or clinic will necessarily need to talk to their patients and the people they work with, whether that’s doctor, other nurses, or administration staff. You’ll also need to talk to patients’ families and try to explain just what is happening to give them all the information they need and to put their minds at ease if you can.
Nursing Is Challenging
If you haven’t done a lot of research into what nursing really entails, you might have a skewed view of the job, only seeing what TV shows and other media might have portrayed. Although there is nothing wrong with using this as a launchpad to discovering whether nursing is the right thing for you to do, you will need to do a lot more research than this, because the truth is that nursing is extremely challenging, and because of this, you must be ready to work hard and think quickly, all while patients are relying on you.
Nursing is not an easy job, which is why many people want to be a part of it. It will be mentally stimulating, physically exhausting, and you’ll feel as though you have definitely achieved something at the end of every shift. Not every job offers this kind of satisfaction, which is why, if you’re drawn to do a job that matters, nursing will appeal.
Are you the kind of person who welcomes more responsibility and who thrives on having lots of tasks to do at once? If so, you would probably enjoy being a nurse. If not, if responsibility stresses you and you like routine and prefer to know exactly what you’re doing from one day to the next, then it might be better to try another career – there are many out there that would be rewarding, like nursing, but without the huge responsibility. After all, a nurse is in charge of someone’s life, and not just one person, but many. This won’t suit the way everyone wants to live their lives.
It’s important to be aware that nurses have to handle a lot of responsibility, and much of the time, they will be working autonomously (although they will have the support of their colleagues, and teamwork is important too).
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