Nursing is one of the most rewarding careers there is. It is a profession that is on the rise. With each passing day, more and more people are taking interest in this profession. It is a profession that is highly respected by society. However, it is not an easy career to take on. For all the benefits that this profession gives a person, there are many difficult parts associated with it; such as stress, long hours and many more. Despite all of these difficulties, every nurse works really hard to comfort the patients and take care of them in the right way.
If you are a student pursuing a nursing degree, then you probably already know that becoming a nurse is no walk in the park. Not everyone has the potential to make good in this career. Moreover, since it is a profession highly valued and respected by society, every student who decides to pursue this profession has to face cut-throat competition. Just like every other profession and every other academic course, this one also requires the student to have some particular characteristics.
Here are some of the characteristics that every nursing degree student must have:
1. Caring nature
It is no secret that nursing is a profession that requires the person to have a caring nature. Every nurse needs to take care of the patients. To be a good nurse, you need to care for your patients truly and deeply. As a nurse, you will be required to comfort the patients and support them. It will be expected of you to understand that the people who you are dealing with are ill; they are vulnerable and they are scared. Therefore, it will be nice if you have this understanding while you are pursuing your nursing degree. If you do not, you need to develop this understanding and develop this caring nature yourself. You need to learn that you will be required to take extra time for your patients and use this time to make them feel valued and wanted. As a nursing student, you need to understand that the patients will not be able to tell you everything that they need. You would need to anticipate their needs and act accordingly, and that will only be possible if you truly care for the patients.
One of the key characteristics of a nursing student is empathy. When you are dealing with sick individuals who are suffering from some of the other ailments, you need to have sensitivity and compassion as much as you can. As a nursing student, you should have the ability to comprehend exactly how you can comfort the patients. You should be able to figure out how to make the patients feel better who are scared and upset. You should never commit the mistake of thinking that as you move ahead in your career as a nurse, you will develop traits such as sensitivity and compassion. It is right in medical school that you need to develop these traits; if you do not already have them.
Having these qualities and a nice temperament helps a nursing student in the long run. There will be times when your job will become highly tough and demanding. But it is important that even in such times, you remain polite with everybody around you. You need to be polite even with the parents and relatives of the patients that you are catering to. If you develop the art of displaying a calm face even when under duress, you will make a great nurse.
3. An understanding of the code of ethics of nursing
The profession of nursing has some code of ethics that every nurse needs to follow. It is imperative for all the nursing professionals to follow these established codes of ethics at all times while serving as a nurse. The profession of nursing demands a lot of things from the individual. It demands that the person is respectful to the patient and his dignity. It requires that the individual is honest at all times. Therefore, as a nursing student, it is imperative that you understand the importance of all the established codes of ethics. If you do not have this understanding, once you really become a nurse, you are going to have a lot of problems. Unlike the established codes of the profession of a doctor that focuses on curing the illness of the patient, the codes of nursing focuses more on taking care and maintaining the nutrition of the patients. As a nurse, it is going to be your duty to maintain and improve the healthcare environment conditions in order to make sure that all the patients get the best quality of treatment possible.
4. Detail-oriented approach
The job of a nurse requires the person to be highly detail-oriented. It is important that as a nurse, you take notes; that you write down everything. At times, you will find that the key to the treatment of a patient lies in a piece of information that the patient gives as a throwaway comment. Therefore, it is important that you have this quality as a nursing student. You should develop the habit of taking notes for everything that you consider everything. You cannot expect to remember everything that you hear. As a nurse, you will be given too much information to handle or remember. Therefore, try to develop the habit of taking notes. Also, you need to be a good listener. A nurse needs to be a brilliant listener at all times. You will be required to listen to all your patients. You should remember that good listening quality makes for a good nurse. Therefore, try and develop this quality while you study in medical school. When you become a nurse, you will require the ability to filter important bits of information from all that you hear.
5. Emotional stability
If you are a nursing student, you already know that the life of a nurse is filled with stress. As a nurse, a person has to face challenges that he has never tackled before. Therefore, it is important that all the students who study nursing have stable emotional levels. You should be emotionally stable at all times. As a nurse, it is important that you remain strong for the patients that you take care of. If there are some patients under your supervision who suffer from extremely fatal conditions, you need to be very careful with them. You need to make them feel as comfortable as you can.
You cannot expect to be good at your job, which requires you to improve the emotional conditions of the patients if you yourself are struggling emotionally. Therefore, it is important that you learn how to keep your emotions in balance. During your career, you will have bad days. If you are having a bad day, it does not mean that you can vent out your emotions at work. So, if you want to be a nurse and you wish to be good at it, you need to make sure that you cultivate the ability to control your emotions.
6. Ability to think quickly
It is very important for a nurse to be a quick thinker. Even during your time at the medical school, the students need to be able to think on their feet and take quick decisions. But when you actually become a nurse and start working, the need to have the ability to think quickly increases by a great extent. You need to understand that there is no one particular way in which the patients will behave. Every patient that you treat or take care of will be a different person and all of them might behave in an entirely different manner. One of them might feel a little pain and behave like everybody is falling down, while some other patient might remain calm in the most serious of conditions.
In the simplest of words, no matter what the situation is, you should be able to think on your feet and make the right decisions. A wrong decision of yours can even mean death for your patient. Therefore, you should be careful while taking decisions. You won’t always have a lot of time at your disposal to gather information. Therefore, be a quick thinker.
7. Good communication skills
It is important for all nursing students to understand the importance of good communication skills in the profession of nursing. In fact, not just during your career, you are going to need good communication skills during your degree as well. But when you follow this career path, it will be imperative that you have nice communication skills. There will be times when you will encounter patients who will not be able to tell you exactly what they would be feeling. As a nurse, it will be your duty to ask the right questions to the patients. It will be your duty to obtain the right information out of the patient. The patients will tell you all kinds of stuff. You should be good enough at your job to make them say the right things. Moreover, while working as a nurse, you will never be alone. Most of the times, there will be people around you. So, you will have a good time if you are good at talking to people.
Having good communication skills will help you in many other ways as well while working as a nurse.
8. You need to be hard-working
Completing a nursing degree is no walk in the park. In fact, even to get admission into one, one needs to face a lot of competition. Therefore, it is only natural that the course itself is also difficult. You will have a lot of assignments and projects to work on. Therefore, it is imperative for you to be hardworking if you want to complete your course in a smooth manner. Moreover, the nurse needs to be hard-working. Needless to say, nursing is a job that never ends. It demands a lot of time and attention. If you are a nurse, you cannot afford to slack off.
It is not an unusual sight to see an overstaffed hospital. More often than not, the hospitals have more patients than they are supposed to accommodate. All of this means more work for the nurses.
Being hardworking might seem to be a task that you need to do, but it’s not! If you are passionate about what you do, you will naturally work hard to complete your job and strive to be the best at what you do. There will be times when you will be required to go an extra mile for patients, and you should step up for it.
As a nursing student, you should be adaptable. If you are not, you need to develop this skill. Because when you actually become a nurse, every day will be different. No matter how many days or years you spend being a nurse, you never know what kind of patients you are going to encounter the next day. If you think that you know it all, that you have got the grasp of the job, something or someone will turn up to surprise you. Nobody plans on falling sick, nor do they choose their sickness. Even if you are taking care of two patients with the same sickness, it is likely that both of them will behave differently. Therefore, you should be adaptable and flexible. Prepare for all possibilities and then learn to act quickly.
10. You should be physically and mentally strong
Being a nurse means long hours and high pressure. There will be days when you will have no breaks at all. To go through all of these rough days, you need to have great physical and mental strength. You need to be patient. For most of the time, you will be on your feet and running around. The first person that a patient calls for is not the doctor, it’s the nurse. Every patient would want you at his disposal. They would want to discuss every small detail with you. At times, this information might be something absolutely useless, but you would need to listen to these people; as it would be your job as a nurse.
Therefore, you should have great mental and physical endurance if you want to be good at your job as a nurse.