Nursing is a career that can bring many benefits, and often nurses see their job more as a way of life than a way to make a living. There are many benefits to a career in nursing, and it is easy to see why people decide on this career from a young age, but it is also important to note that it is not well suited to everyone. There are many skills and attributes that are required to find success with a career in nursing. Some of these can be developed over time, but there are also some things that cannot be taught. So, what does it take to find success as a nurse?
Perhaps the single most important attribute that a good nurse has is compassion. Obviously, you need a high degree of medical knowledge and skills, but without compassion, you will never find success with your work. Nurses need to be able to put themselves in the shoes of patients (and their loved ones) and find ways to connect with them and offer both care and support.
Following this, a good nurse must also be an excellent communicator. In addition to engaging and connecting with patients and their loved ones, you must also be able to communicate in a clear and succinct way with other nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. This will include verbal communication skills, listening skills, writing skills, and presenting skills. These can be improved if you currently have any weaknesses, and this could improve your career and life in many ways.
Ability To Work Under Pressure
Are you able to remain calm and carry out your job in a high-pressure environment? If so, you could be well-suited to a career in nursing. Every shift can feel like fighting a fire as you will need to be on your toes and able to perform to a high standard no matter how extreme the situation is or how many patients you are juggling. Additionally, you need to have thick skin and a strong stomach if you are to succeed as a nurse.
Medical Knowledge & Skills
Obviously, you need medical knowledge and skills to find work as a nurse. Fortunately, you do not necessarily have to study for many years to achieve this, as you can take online BSN programs for non nurses that will prepare you for life as a nurse in just one year. This is an intensive program but one that can fast-track your career, which makes it an ideal choice for anyone that is transitioning from a non-nursing background.
One skill that is sometimes overlooked when it comes to nursing is decisiveness. If you are the kind of person that finds it hard to make a decision and looks to others before making a decision, then this could make it hard to find success. Nurses need to have the self-confidence and belief to make snap decisions, and this can be the difference between life and death.
Ability To Learn From Mistakes
Following on from this, you also need to be able to learn from mistakes without dwelling on them. You need to avoid making mistakes at all costs, but also understand that it is inevitable that mistakes will be made when you are working in such a fast-paced, high-pressure environment. The best nurses will be able to learn what they can from this mistake and then get on with the job without dwelling on the mistake.
Ability To Switch Off
It can be a strange feeling to leave work after a long shift and try to adjust to a “normal life”. It’s inevitable that there will be difficult experiences and patients that stick with you, but it’s also important that you are able to switch off after work and make the most out of your free time. Your free time is hugely valuable as a nurse, and you need to be able to have fun but also relax and spend time with loved ones. It is always hard at first, but often this is something that you get better at over time.
Dedication To Continuous Learning
Nursing is constantly going through change, which means that you need to commit to continuous learning and development. You will need to keep up to date with the latest trends, tech, and developments in both nursing and healthcare as a whole. This can be time-consuming and challenging, but for those that are passionate about what they do, it is an important part of the job and part of what makes it so interesting.
Ability To Work As Part Of A Team
As a nurse, you need to understand that you play an important part in something much greater than your role. Nursing is hugely important to providing healthcare, but there are many other areas that are also important. You need to be happy working as part of a team and playing both big and small roles in the care of your patients. It is always the patients that are the most important people, and you need to put them first whether you are taking charge in a case or playing a minor role.
Good Bedside Manner
There are few things more important than bedside manner when it comes to healthcare. While you might deal with 50 plus patients in a single day, you must keep in mind that each person is an individual, and being in hospital will be stressful, scary, and worrying for some. Therefore, you need to be professional, friendly, and supportive with every single patient. You need to make sure that you listen to their concerns, make them feel important, and develop trust.
These are the skills and attributes that any nurse needs to find success in this role. Nursing is a role that is not well suited to everyone, but those that find success in nursing often see it more as a way of life than a job and take great pride in their work. You could, too, if you embark on this career journey.