Nursing - Is It Hard To Become A Nurse?
Is It Hard To Become A Nurse?
Nursing is not an easy profession and getting your license is far from a walk in the park. It might not be the hardest profession in the world, but if you're planning to study nursing because you think it's easy, you're going to be in for a nasty surprise.
Is Nursing School Hard to Pass?
If you look through nursing forums, Q&A websites, and speak with nurses, most will tell you that getting a nursing license is the hardest thing they have ever done.
The purpose of nursing school is to prepare you for the NCLEX and the challenges of the nursing profession. If you have to work and earn at the same time, or you have children to raise or family members to care for, it will be even more challenging.
Are you young, fresh, ambitious, willing, and free of responsibilities or do you have kids, sick parents, and a job to hold down?
Your mindset also plays an important role. How well do you respond to pressure? Are you a quick learner or do you struggle to grasp concepts first time? Do you thrive or capitulate in an academic environment?
No two nursing students are the two. Everyone has their own way of doing things and will react differently. But for most people, nursing school can feel challenging at best and nearly impossible at worst.
Why Is Nursing School So Hard?
The difficulties of acquiring a nursing degree begin before you even step foot inside the school. Most nursing programs require high GPAs in demanding subjects, including chemistry, math, biology, and psychology.
Once you make it onto the nursing program, you must study intently and for long hours to ensure you complete those courses and get those credits.
You will likely need to pull a number of all-nighters and when that tiredness and stress builds up, it'll become hard to concentrate and perform to the best of your abilities.
If it persists, you may experience burnout.
Burnout is not just for registered nurses working in clinical settings. It's something that can also hit while you're at nursing school, as you'll be placing both your body and mind under a great deal of stress.
On top of these concerns, you must consider that nursing programs are expensive, clinicals and internships are difficult, and you'll be forced to deal with bleeding, diseased, suffering, and dead patients.
Do I Have What it Takes to Be a Nurse?
If you're expecting an easy ride, nursing probably isn't for you. If you think that you can become a nurse educator or administrator without getting hands-on, you're sorely mistaken.
Becoming a nurse means studying hard to get through nursing school, employing critical thinking skills to pass the NCLEX, and then dealing with doctors, patients, and registered nurses as you complete clinicals, internships, and then eventually start your career.
Can you console people who are sad, angry, and in pain? Can you deal with disease, illness, and death? Can you stay strong emotionally and physically even when the world seems to be collapsing around you?
Nurses are often asked to do all of these things.
Take the pandemic as an example. Many of us wanted to hide away, and even the ones who refused to wear masks and adhere to restrictions were still in the relative comfort of their homes, schools, and workplaces. Nurses, on the other hand, were thrust into the middle of the chaos and forced to work long hours on a seemingly never-ending list of infected, scared, and incredibly sick patients.
None of that is easy.
Do You Have to Be Really Smart to Be a Nurse?
Many people assume that you don't need to be very smart to work in the nursing profession. As a result, they think that nursing education is a breeze and they can just rock up to school, complete their exams, and start their careers.
In reality, you must have above-average intelligence (at least) to make it as a registered nurse. Not only are they very good at critical thinking, but they know how to react quickly and expertly in an emergency.
They are also experts in human anatomy and health.
Make no mistake about it, getting a nursing degree and becoming a registered nurse are both very difficult and require a high level of intelligence.
What is the Easiest Nurse to Become?
In all honesty, if you're asking this question, the nursing profession might not be for you.
There is no easy way out. Sure, there are roles that aren't as demanding and won't leave you as drained, but nursing, in general, is a tough profession and you'll be forced to deal with a lot of stress, responsibility, pressure, and misery.
Technically, the "easiest" role would be that of a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN), as they require less study and often work under the guidance of a registered nurse (RN). But it's still a tough job.
If you want to help people and avoid the stress and chaos of emergency rooms and hospital dorms, consider roles such as nurse educators, school nurses, and public health nurses.
What Nursing Job is The Hardest?
As far as training is concerned, it's often said that nurse anesthetists have one of the hardest jobs in the nursing profession. Becoming a critical care nurse, ICU Nurse, Psychiatric Nurse, or Oncology Nurse is also challenging.
These jobs often place a great deal of responsibility on the nurse, which is very stressful. They are also required to be well-educated and certified.
Summary: Is it Hard to Become a Nurse?
Whether you're studying for an associate degree or a bachelor's degree and whether your goal is to become a clinical nurse specialist, a nurse anesthetist, or a pediatric nurse, this profession is never easy and it would be dangerous to assume otherwise.
Nursing schools will test your critical thinking skills, patience, intelligence, memory, and your ability to work and study under pressure and without much sleep. Employers will squeeze every last bit of physical and emotional energy out of you and force you to become desensitized.
It's a very rewarding job and one that offers a great deal of variety (as well as competitive pay and varying opportunities due to the nursing shortage), but it's definitely not easy.