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'Am I cut out for nursing?'


Can you advise this student nurse?


“I started my nursing course in September and am doing my second placement. But I’m starting to think that I’m just not suited to a career as a nurse.

“I get all the theory and find it fascinating. I even enjoy writing essays! But I really struggle to have any rapport with patients because I just feel so out of my comfort zone when I’m on placement.

“My first placement was outpatients and I pretty much just watched but now I’m on a ward and I’m scared even to be on my own without a nurse with me in case something goes wrong. I have a feeling of dread every time I go to placement.

“I’ve spoken to other people on my course - in my own year and those above - and everyone has said it’s because I’m in my first year and I’ll soon ‘get’ it, but I can’t shake this feeling that actually I’m just not cut out for nursing and everyone’s just too nice to say it.

“So now I’m asking strangers, who have no reason to just to be nice, should I be carrying on with nursing?”

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Readers' comments (3)

  • Talk it over with your mentor. Maybe you could target certain skill sets to enable you to feel more confident . Please bear in mind you are a first-year student not a hca nor a trained nurse .Pretty sure you are doing fine as you have not mentioned adverse feedback. Learn as much theory as you can , apply it to the clinical and you will be a educated reflective practioner. There is more to being a nurse than the uniform or glorifying in what procedures you have ticked off or apparent "confident" people who don't question things or even themselves.

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  • nursing is demanding and a very responsible job ,looking after the most vulnerable people within society. you need to put this thought at the forefront of your mind . There is never any easy answer but confidence comes with time i might add

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  • Don't give up! This is from a third year student who had learnt english here from scratch , and has since managed to be counted. It is not easy to get into a new environment and start interacting as if you were one of the group. But, my secret and advice to you is: keep smiling, approaching any patient and introducing yourself. One of the first and simplest questions are the following (how are you doing? how are you finding it here? how long you have been here? )-meaning find some close-ended questions to kick-start a conversation. From, your first question, you will get an answer, that would give you the opportunity to listen, nodding, and possibly exploring around the given answer. I know it is uncomfortable, worse for me who struggled to speak fluently. But I know you can... NURSING IS FANTASTIC, an industry where you can't stop talking, and thriving as an individual, but improtantly impacting positively other people's lives. Be courageous...

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