5 nursing jobs I could not do

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I think every nurse has a list of “would not/could not ever do” jobs within our profession. I’ve mentioned time and time again that the greatest part of our profession is the lateral career choices we can make. Moving fluently from one discipline of nursing to another without additional formal education is such a gold mine, but I have to admit, there are some lateral moves I’d rather not make.

Here are five nursing disciplines I could never do as a full-time job:

Nurse Manager

  • Underappreciated, overworked and underpaid. These nurses are the ones who get blamed for everything when things aren’t flowing. And they are never actually off the clock, ever. I have utmost respect for all the great Nurse Managers out there.

All Things Pediatric

  • I don’t even have any children, but my heart could not take the stress of treating and caring for these angels. I know it’s a hard pill to swallow, but I can accept when the elderly lose their battles with an illness. It’s an entirely different emotional roller coaster when a child loses that battle.

Wound Care/Ostomy

  • I was scarred as a nursing student, plain and simple. I cannot stomach the deep, penetrating, ulcerated wounds that track and tunnel. This is that area of nursing where I just can’t keep my composure…at all.

All Things Office-Related

  • In my entire career as a nurse, I worked in an office setting for a total of four months. It was four months too long for me. It wasn’t a bad job to have, it’s just not for me. I love the bedside–it’s just who I am.

Home Health

  • I think I might like home health if it didn’t have anything wound care-related (please see above). I would enjoy the education, the teaching, the demonstrations and of course the interrelationships with the patients away from the hospital, but I don’t think there is a home health job that excludes wound care.

And the runner-up goes to all things related to psychiatric nursing. These individuals have hearts of gold and the patience of a saint because of all the intangibles. It takes a very special person to help patients battle these disease processes that often have no pathophysiologic representation.

I’m a nurse who is just built a certain way, and I’m willing to bet other nurses feel the same about other choices within our profession. This is the greatest thing about nursing: the almost unlimited number of disciplines within our profession. So, thank you to all those nurses out there who do, every day, what I could never do! You amaze me and we’re lucky to have you!

What are your top five?

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