The stuff I hang from my ceiling when someone graduates?
Let’s see what the advantages are…
Well, crepe paper can be used for 75% of all surgical dressings.
Okay. You’re totally out of luck if you’re one of the 25% that need gauze.
Hey! It saves fuel and labor! Way ahead of their time, they were! Had we stuck with crepe paper, why there would be no global warming!
It eliminates the washing of gauze! Uh…who washes gauze?
It also saves money. That’s the bottom line, isn’t it.
But I hope they didn’t use it on the, uh, bottom – that stuff falls apart when it gets wet and it can’t be comfortable if used in the nether regions.
I’m just sayin’
Wait a minute, doesn’t Dennison’s make chili? I’m going to have to look at the ingredients more closely!
What does it take to be a nurse?
In addition to education.
Nursing is comprised of every personality, temperment, gender, age and educational level.
The nurses in my own department form a kaleidoscope of these characteristics.
What is it that we share?
What about nursing allows people with varied backgrounds and education levels to come together and form a cohesive team?
Underneath all the differences, there are basic traits that form the foundation of the nursing profession. Those who have these traits will be nurses. Those who don’t will find that they are not drawn to the profession.
- No matter what specialty you aspire to, a nurse needs to be flexible. Dealing with human beings is never an exact science. Even nurses whose jobs have a definite “routine” will occasionally have to accommodate a want or a need or take care of an urgent/emergent matter.
- Nurses work hard. If they slack off, their patients suffer and their co-workers have to pick up their slack. Nursing school will usually weed out the slackers, although I’ve worked with a few. Heck, I’ve been one a few times. Your co-workers will call you on it, trust me.
- One of the biggest changes I’ve seen in my 29 years of nursing is the increase in older nursing graduates. Perhaps there are some high school graduates mature enough to take on a program right out of high school. I was not one of them. Somehow I managed to “grow up” along with my skills, but I sure think some life experience prior to nursing school is a huge plus. You are dealing with life and death on a daily basis. It helps if you bring some maturity to the table. If you don’t, you will gain that maturity “on the job”.
- You need to want to know. You need to want to learn. Nursing school teaches you how to think like a nurse and you learn how to be a nurse on the job. When that uneasy gut feeling shows up and you somehow just know something is wrong, this is what will make you turn around and check that patient one more time.
- Nursing takes a lot out of you physically and emotionally. You have to be able to “go the distance”. To put one foot in front of the other when you are exhausted. For example, in ER you have to mentally detach from the teenager who just died in one room to attend to the frightened mother of a toddler with a fever of 100 degrees across the hall. Which brings us to the next thing you will find nurses share…
- You have to be able to tune in to something you love, turn on your ability to enjoy life and tune out nursing. And no, I’m not channeling Timothy Leary. It’s imperative that you have hobbies/passions outside of work. A successful nurse recognizes that all work and no play makes for a burnt-out soul. And they are NO fun to work with. Don’t believe me? I have some old co-workers you can meet!
I’m sure there are some traits that I am missing; this list is far from comprehensive.
If you aren’t a nurse and you see yourself possessing some of these characteristics, consider joining the ranks! We need you desperately! There is no job that will work you harder and no job that can give you as much satisfaction at the end of the day.
If you are a nurse, what did I miss? What traits do you consider indispensable to nursing?