10 things you never knew about a career in nursing

Maria Parry.jpg

For the Year of the Nurse, we asked our nursing staff to share with us the things you don’t necessarily get told before starting your career in nursing.

Here are 10 things we found out:

  1. When you’ve had a bad day, and everything seems to go wrong, the nurse you’re working with gives you a hug. They will never promise it will all be ok but, knowing someone is there makes all the difference.
  2. You can remember individual people and families 40 years later because the interaction is so meaningful.
  3. You can eat your dinner in five minutes flat, without indigestion. You can also go a full shift without realising you haven’t been to the toilet, regardless of the number of times you've taken patients.
  4. The fast pace at which the profession develops. Twenty years ago, advanced practice was a dream. Now, nurses with additional skills see and treat their own caseload of patients, in primary and secondary care.
  5. How much your feet hurt after a twelve-and half-hour shift.
  6. Nursing can take you around the world where you can experience working in cultures you only dreamt of!
  7. You can go into nursing at a tender age and not even consider, or at the time understand, the impact patients, their relatives, and colleagues will have on you.
  8. As a learning disability nurse, you can work across the lifespan. So, you can work with both children and adults with learning disabilities.
  9. Nursing provides amazing career opportunities, within a variety of specialities, and work settings for personal and professional development.
  10. The role forces you to push yourself to your boundaries and beyond, which in turn helps you cope with the uncertainty in your own life.