Nurses play vital roles in the healthcare industry. They may offer crucial services, including primary and preventative care and disease management. The world’s healthcare system rapidly evolves, making it important for nurses to possess well-rounded skill sets to thrive in the industry. Successful nurses understand that this career goes beyond patient assessments and medication administration. It would be best to have the right mindset to pursue nursing as a lifelong career. Consider these practical tips to become a great nurse.
- Get a degree
Advancing your knowledge in the profession is important to succeed in nursing. Nurses account for the largest share of the United States healthcare workforce, numbering over 3 million members. The best way to stay ahead of others is to obtain higher education. The Institute of Medicine plans to substantially increase the number of nurses with bachelor’s degrees. Only a few nurses have master’s degrees, with 1% boasting doctoral degrees. Advancing your qualifications will make you a hot cake.
- Have good demeanor
With long shifts and less downtime, getting burnt out or overwhelmed is easy. However, you must always have good intentions since your demeanor can affect patients in one way or another. Maintaining a positive attitude can benefit patient well-being and help you climb the ladder in your profession, especially when you eye an admin role. Honesty is a great virtue to cultivate. You are human so errors can happen. Admitting your mistakes and rectifying them will help maintain your integrity.
- Be compassionate
Nurses hold several interactions with patients daily, so you need to embrace patient-centered approaches and be compassionate. Be there for the sick and offer encouragement when necessary. A kind and compassionate nurse empathizes with the patient’s condition, helping ease pain and worries. Treat your coworkers and others compassionately while not succumbing to emotional drainage.
- Lead by example
A great leader can help you work your way up to management positions. You will often work with co-nurses who are new or less experienced. Learn to lead by example and make everything a teachable moment. When you share your knowledge in a considerate manner, you can pass on good habits to others.
- Prioritize patient privacy
You may find it hard to keep medical info private, especially when the patient has a complicated issue. That said, limiting the amount of information you share is still important for privacy in clinical settings. Patients expect nurses to treat their confidential information with respect and privacy, so do just that, like a professional.
- Get BBP certification
Bloodborne pathogens (BBP) certifications will increase your knowledge about pathogens, viruses, bacteria, parasites, disease prevention, and universal precautions. Begin a BBP course online for free to build on your resume. Bloodborne pathogen courses are recommended for healthcare workers who make contact with blood and other infections directly or indirectly. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) implements strict rules to safeguard the health and safety of everyday workers in various fields. A comprehensive BPP course teaches all you need to identify risk factors and treatment options in case of unwarranted contact.
Apart from nurses, other professionals who need special certification and training in bloodborne pathogens include physicians, lab technicians, dentists, first aid rescuers, and janitorial staff who clean hazardous medical products. If you need BBP certification urgently to apply for a job, you can take the online course and get certified in hours. Bloodborne pathogens are more than a certification; it is your best bet to protect yourself from contracting diseases in high-risk environments.
- Stay organised
Nursing requires good focus and attention. If you handle several patients daily, know where you store critical materials. Staying organized will help you deliver excellent treatment to patients on time. It will also allow you to allocate working hours seamlessly to reduce stress and hassle. Feel free to use planners or various applications to track your schedule, patient details, equipment, and other items.
- Be humble
Humility is a great quality to become a successful nurse. So, it helps to put your ego aside. Being humble will enable you to ask for your assistance, accept mistakes, and treat patients respectfully. Patients love healthcare workers who are kind and humble because they can count on them for much-needed comfort.
- Build healthy relationships with patients
Establishing healthy relationships is a key part of the nursing profession. Try to show friendly behavior toward patients to increase their comfort. It would also help if you take time to know your patients. Building rapport with sick people can make treatment easier. A healthy environment fosters the health and experience of patients.
- Develop a specialty
One proven tip to stand out in the nursing space is to develop a specialty. For instance, you may specialize in critical care, emergency nursing, pediatrics, or geriatrics, according to your interest. By specializing in one area, you can render effective patient care and increase your demand from employers. Generally, a bachelor’s degree is required to undertake a specialty. You may want to plan your career early to develop a specialty. Online degrees like the ABSN program can allow you to acquire your degree within 16 months.
- Participate in professional organizations
Getting involved in professional organizations is a powerful technique to network, learn from experts, and stay updated with the latest trends in the field. Besides, you may get your next job through a professional organization. The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the biggest professional association for U.S. nurses. That said, there are other organizations like the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and the National League for Nursing (NLN). Here are a few ideas to link with professional nursing organizations: join a committee, create newsletters for the organization, and offer to give presentations at their annual conferences.
- Learn to voice your concerns
Sharing your thoughts with the bosses doesn’t have to be daunting. Consider developing free and honest relationships with authorities, allowing you to voice your concerns without fear. For example, if you feel overworked, underpaid, or undervalued, dare to discuss this with the administrators. Authorities may be willing to find solutions to your concerns and offer motivation to increase your job satisfaction.
- Don’t let rejections stop you
Getting rejections is okay, but giving up on your nursing dreams is not. Nursing is a competitive industry, so expect some rejection along the line. You may not land your dream job or promotion, but this should not define your future. Rather, use rejections as motivation to prove your worth. You’re probably not the only nurse experiencing setbacks, so keep trying until those doors open.
- Avoid rushing
Patience is key in nursing. You risk causing accidents if you rush. Therefore, always take your time to research and be confident in what you do. Messing up in a career that deals with precious lives can result in dangerous consequences. Before taking on new responsibilities, make sure you know the details of the job and your superiors’s expectations. Asking your leader for clarification is a smart tip for becoming a successful nurse. Double-check the dosage of medications and seek expert help when dealing with complex procedures.
- Prioritise self-care
Over 60% of nurses report feeling burned out and exhausted. Unfortunately, you can’t care for your patients if your wellness is not on point. Prioritise self-care by eating healthily and getting enough sleep. Seven hours of sleep per night is good for your health. Finally, exercise your muscles and heart to stay productive every day.
Building a successful nursing career is possible with the right tips. Hopefully, you’ll consider those stated above for the desired outcome.