Everyone has a story about the moment they decided to become a nurse. It is almost as universal as the horror stories of understaffing.
Since there are so many different stories, it is easy to see a pattern emerging among them. This pattern can be broken down into a few different types of stories.
No one reason for becoming a nurse is better than another. In the end, we all end up helping people, whether that was our motivating force or not.
Why examine the reasons people become nurses? Because it can give you a glimpse into how others approach nursing and provide insight into their behaviors.
For the Money
Try not to laugh, but many nurses come into the profession because of the money. Although it isn’t nearly enough, nurses do get paid well for the amount of schooling required.
Most nurses grow out of this motivator once they see why nurses are paid so well, and that’s okay. By the time they realize the money isn’t worth the stress, they are already hooked into the idea of helping people.
Nursing tends to run in families, and this can be a strong motivator for those who have a sense of family tradition. Again, the nurse starts out doing the job for one reason and finds they have come to care deeply for their patients in the interim.
We’ve all had that moment where a nurse or doctor has touched our lives. Whether it was the compassion shown when a loved one was ill or even the touching acts of caring when the future nurse was young, the events surrounding medicine can draw a person in.
These events can have a lasting impression on people, and this can motivate them to want to give back. A nurse who has this motivator likes to tell their story most of the time, and they can be very inspirational.
Fascination with Medicine
Like anatomy? Like physiology? Turned on by the sight of blood? You may be into nursing because you are into medicine, and that’s a great help when becoming a nurse.
Medicine is complex and fascinating, and if this is a draw for you, it may lead you to further your education so that you are even more involved in the medical side of nursing. Even if you are not inspired to pursue that, you’re probably the go to nurse on your unit for all those technical questions.
To Find Meaning in Life
Many nurses who come from other professions find nursing appealing because it seems to mean more than the job they had before. For instance, an accountant may switch careers because they want to have meaning to their life beyond taxes.
This reason to become a nurse is helpful because it can let you see the big picture. Yes, you are stressed, but your life has meaning because you are giving of yourself to help care for others.
To Help People
Nearly every nurse is motivated by wanting to help people, regardless of other reasons that may have propelled them into the profession. Certainly, this is the way it should be, because nurses are nothing if not helpers.
Helping people is what we do best as nurses, although sometimes we may feel we are not able to do that as effectively as we like. However, it helps to remember that it is the reason we are there and the reason we stay.
So, what is your becoming a nurse story? What happened in your life that made you say to yourself, “Hey, I want to be a nurse!”?