Our nurse blogger answers the most common question she hears
Often times I am faced with the question “Why did you become a nurse?”
Not only do I hear this question from patients, their families, co-workers, friends, and family, the question came up in every one of my interviews for nursing schools and nursing positions.
Everyone has their own unique answer. For me, I became a nurse because I am the second eldest of 12 children. I often helped my mom care for my younger siblings, I helped to care for my elderly grandmother and grandfather. Any time friends or other family members needed help, I was there. During my school years, I enjoyed volunteering at events such as raking leaves or shoveling snow for the elderly.
Caring for others wasn’t a task or an obligation, it was my way of life. So when considering careers, nursing was the one that made me feel like I would be able to do what I love on a daily basis.
Why do you want to become a nurse or why did you? Some people will respond that it is a stable career path. Others will give responses similar to mine. You may even hear people say they’ve heard it pays well. But with nursing, you cannot just do it for the money. Believe me, if you are in it just for the paycheck, you will not be happy in life—at least not the days you have to work! You need a true passion for caring for others to enjoy this field of work.
Example: I work 12-hour shifts. I have to make sure all my patients are fed, walked, bathed, and given their medications. I take their vital signs, and monitor them for any changes in their condition—particularly important since I work in a hospital setting.
If you get into nursing, you will work closely with doctors who may or may not be willing to listen to your opinion (most of them are very receptive to nurses and very nice) and update concerned family members throughout the day. If you do not like interacting with others, then this is not the career for you.
Nurses are very versatile, and the profession offers countless options. You have the flexibility to change positions if you feel stuck or want something new. You can work in a doctor’s office, a hospital, urgent care, private practice, travel nursing, a nursing home, the operating room, and so much more! It is a field that allows plenty of different choices and you can switch or “shop” around until you find what you love. You have the option to go back to school if you want to keep furthering your career. You could even become a professor or have the chance to run a practice of your own one day with the right schooling. Nursing is a very fulfilling career, with lots of growth opportunity. You get to touch the lives of others every day.
If you are a nurse now and find yourself doubting your choice, ask yourself, “Why did I become a nurse?” Your answer will remind you why you do what you do on those tough days. If you are a compassionate person considering nursing school, you will be great!
Being a nurse is not just a job, it will become a part of who you are.