Every profession has its idiosyncrasies, nursing no less than any other. Nursing is a very unique and demanding job that requires a particular mindset and resilience. Nurses not only perform some of the most important and difficult daily tasks at work, but also contend with sensitive and emotional issues with patients and their families, complex regulatory requirements, and unpredictable, high-stress work environments. Nursing is incredibly demanding on several fronts, but it can also be one of the most rewarding jobs ever.
Struggles With Patients
Nurses do not discriminate while performing their job duties; they provide care and treatment to every patient assigned to them, and those patients are not always agreeable. Nurses must often contend with angry, argumentative, and even overtly hostile patients, often on a regular basis. These situations can be incredibly stressful, especially when a patient refuses proper care out of stubbornness. Nurses must overcome these difficulties on a regular basis to ensure proper care for their patients.
While some patient situations can be incredibly frustrating, others are emotionally taxing in other ways. Nurses are often the first line of consolation a family will have when a loved one passes away while receiving care. Nurses in assisted living facilities, intensive care units, and emergency wards are often the ones to deliver the bad news to the family of a lost patient. Nurses lose patients for countless reasons all the time, and it takes incredible strength and resilience to keep working through these experiences.
Difficult Scheduling and Logistics
Nurses rarely have the chance to remain on a consistent schedule for very long. Hospitals and most other medical care centers must remain open and available to patients 24 hours a day, and staffing is a major issue for many medical centers throughout the country. It is not uncommon for nurses to work odd shifts, switch shifts from week to week, or even work back-to-back shifts when their workplaces are understaffed.
The medical field is also one of the most heavily regulated in the country, and new regulations seem to appear on a very frequent basis. Nurses must carefully ensure they meet all applicable regulations for every patient, every time. They also must regularly complete additional regulation training and other educational programs to maintain compliance and ensure they can provide acceptable care.
Nursing Demands a Particular Type of Personality
Nursing is by no means an easy job. Most nurses contend with blood, vomit, and all other human bodily fluids on a daily basis. Some patients refuse treatment or argue about what type of care they need. Patients may be angry or depressed about their medical conditions and vent their frustration to the nurses trying to help them. Nursing can be a difficult, thankless, and incredibly stressful job in many ways; however, it can also be incredibly rewarding. Countless patients have credited their recoveries to the thoughtful, professional care of their nurses, and every nurse can go home after every shift knowing his or her workday made very real differences in patients’ lives.
Many nurses say that choosing this job is a calling, not a career choice. Nursing is ultimately all about people, and those who take up nursing must contend with countless lifestyle issues surrounding their profession. Nurses often miss birthdays, work through holidays, and expose themselves to disease and human detritus that would repulse many others; however, they do this because nursing is an invaluable service that changes lives every day.