Is Nursing for Me?
Although you probably know nurses, do you really know what it takes to be a nurse? Take this short quiz to find out if you are emotionally, mentally, and physically ready to be a nurse.
- I am a good student and know how to study.
- I am a good listener.
- I have trouble communicating with individuals who are “in charge”.
- I have problems letting go of people.
- Purpose in life is more important than money.
- I thrive in an environment that does not change very often.
- I love the idea of learning something new every day.
- I like a challenge.
- I am uncomfortable touching other people.
- I eventually want to be a leader in an organization.
Predicting Your Success
- I am a good student and know how to study. If you answered Yes to this statement, nursing might be for you. Nursing school is tough and competitive. The assumption is that you already know how to study and that you can manage your time effectively.
- I am a good listener. If you answered Yes to this statement, you have a huge edge on many other people. A large piece of nursing is being able to communicate with others – and the biggest component of communication is being able to listen to others.
- I have trouble communicating with individuals who are “in charge”. If you answered Yes to this statement, you might want to work on your communication skills – or decide that nursing may NOT be for you. More than most professions, nursing requires that you be able to accurately, efficiently, and gently communicate with individuals on the team. This includes the patient and family, physicians, other nurses, hospital/ agency administration, other professionals, and the general public. If that idea scares you to death, you might want to think about what you really want to do.
- I have problems letting go of people. If you answered Yes to this statement, you simply need to know that it is inevitable that you will become attached to at least some of your patients and families. One of the hardest skills for nurses to learn is to set boundaries – allowing a certain amount of attachment, but being able to “draw the line” between appropriate and inappropriate boundaries.
- Purpose in life is more important than money. This statement is not actually highly predictive of whether or not you should be a nurse, but, although nurses can make a very good salary, most nurses identify that purpose in life and in their careers is much more important than money.
- I thrive in an environment that does not change very often. If you answered Yes to this statement, you might want to reconsider your career choice since nursing may NOT be for you. Any healthcare profession will be in an environment that changes often. Patients are admitted and discharged, get sicker or better, and best practices change. It is important for the nurse to be adaptable and comfortable with change.
- I love the idea of learning something new every day. This statement goes along with number 6. If you answered Yes to this one, nursing may be a good profession for you. The best nurses in practice have an unquenchable appetite for knowledge – and if a day goes by without learning something new, they view the day as not as satisfying.
- I like a challenge. If you answered Yes to this statement, nursing may DEFINITELY be for you! Nursing is an extremely hard job mentally, physically and emotionally. Nurses work long hours and are on their feet most of the day. Nurses care for sick patients of all ages and must often be very creative to take care of diverse populations.
- I am uncomfortable touching other people. If you answered Yes to this statement, you need to ask yourself if this discomfort means that you absolutely cannot comfortably touch another person. Nurses provide much of the direct hands-on patient care that patients receive in all environments. Nurses are often among the first to touch people….and are usually among the last to touch the dying.
- I eventually want to be a leader in an organization. Finally, if you answered Yes to this statement, the nursing profession might be perfect for you. if you want to be a leader in an organization, nursing offers many different paths to achieving that goal. Many times, achieving these goals require further education, but you may be able to satisfy your desire for leadership at any level of nursing education!
How Did You Do?
While this quiz is not scientific, it DOES point out those attributes that are important when you are thinking about becoming a nurse. These attributes include:
- Being dedicated to learning and education;
- Having great communication skills;
- Being able to work with people of all educational levels;
- Being compassionate but also being able to establish and maintain boundaries;
- Having the skills to be able to think critically and quickly;
- Being comfortable with a changing environment;
- Knowing your strengths and weaknesses – and knowing how to work with your weaknesses.