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What Did Nurses Learn About Themselves During the Pandemic?


The pandemic affected everyone in one way or another, especially nurses. These professionals rose to the occasion to keep the public safe from the virus. As grueling as these times can be, providers are also learning new things about themselves – for better and for worse.

We asked millions of nurses to share what they’ve discovered over the last 18 months:

That I really do like wine.


That I’m so grateful for my home environment. The safety and comfort it holds after a big work day, or during lockdown days off.


That I am way too anti-social. My life barely changed. Also, I need to go into my second career choice being a lawyer.


How common sense has completely escaped a majority of my healthcare friends and family. Some of the smartest people I know have lost all logic…and how easy it was to see who would crumble under peer pressure. For me, I’ve learned the true reason behind natural selection and how modern medicine has caused a complete imbalance. Lol


That many people really are as dumb as a box of rocks.


That the general public loves to give their “expert” knowledge on all things COVID.


I enjoy being alone…..?


I never liked people and I really don’t like them now


That I don’t need to wear a bra at home ?


That my tolerance for uneducated people is worse than I thought and I frequently want to punch stupid people ??


That there are a lot of entitled Americans who are stuck on stupid. I am ashamed of all the selfishness and hatred most people displayed…I also learned that when people are handed the tools to end this pandemic and choose not to, I have little to no compassion for them when they get sick.


I realize there are so many people with science-based education who don’t trust science but believe in conspiracies ☹️


That I don’t trust the government.


My body can process more alcohol more frequently than it should ?


I learned that self-care is the most important thing and that no one else can understand or feels what you are going through, so put yourself first. If you need a break, take it! Need A day to yourself, make it happen. Self-care and putting yourself first because you can’t drink from an empty cup ?


That I’m stronger than I thought


That I worked too hard for too little. And I’m surrounded by idiots.


That being a nurse is what I wanted to be…. hasn’t changed……I absolutely ? love being a nurse…. despite the pandemic and many tears and anxiety…. I am exactly where I am meant to be!!!


How scared the media keeps the public to control them.


I should have become a stripper or taken lessons when I was in college.


I like dogs, coffee and maybe like 3 people.


That I don’t want to be essential staff ?????


That healthcare is the worst possible career choice.


I am an expert nose swabber!


I learned that most of my family has significantly less compassion and understanding for what I do than I ever thought possible.


Compassion fatigue is real!!!!


I’ve never watched so much crap ? on Netflix ?‍♀️?‍♀️???


That I only thought I had hot flashes, but then I had to wear all the isolation PPE, and I can personally attest that yes, we are made of 75% water. Because I sweat it all out before I can leave a room.


Hospitals are finally realizing that nurse retention is important but it’s too little and too late.


I can curse under my breath, and no one can see it ?



It’s been a long road and we’re not out of the woods yet. Hang on and remember to take care of yourselves as the pandemic continues. A big thanks to everyone that took the time to share. These responses have been edited for length and clarity.



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