Being a nurse is a rewarding career. Helping others and potentially changing lives in the process provides feelings and emotions that can never be matched or attained in any other line of work. Being a nurse gives you so much back that it can be hard to see yourself ever doing anything else. Of course, if you are after a change, you can look at pushing forwards with your career and perhaps start looking at becoming a leader or practitioner. Having a change or improving your career can leave you feeling positive, and it can help reignite that fuel and passion you once had for nursing.
Realizing Your Potential
You may have become trapped or comfortable in your current role as a nurse, and that is fine, but if you are after more and you want to realize your potential, then you need to stop holding yourself back. When you realize your potential, you ensure that you are an asset to any team, and you ensure that you futureproof yourself that little bit more. Realizing your true potential by improving your education, upskilling, or advancing your knowledge and awareness will help you become a valuable employee, and it will leave you feeling good about yourself too.
Expanding Your Horizons and Realizing New Opportunities
When you advance your career, you experience and feel a vast number of changes, you expand your horizons, and you start looking at new opportunities that you may not have even considered before. You deserve a good career, and you deserve a promotion; those opportunities for you both inside and outside of work are attainable, achievable and within reach; all you must do is push yourself that little bit harder. New opportunities can provide you with the opportunity to travel within your role, and they can help provide you with financial stability.
Why You Should Advance Your Career Right Now
There really is no time like the present, and with the experience, skills, and knowledge you have now, why wouldn’t you start focusing on advancing your career? There are roles and opportunities that are waiting for hardworking, dedicated, and focused nurses like yourself to come along and make a real difference. Career advancement opportunities will not wait, and just as the world of nursing never stands still, neither should you. If you do not go for a promotion and do not focus on progression, somebody else will.
What You Can Do That Makes a Real Difference
As a hands-on nurse, you currently know that you are making a difference, and you can see the impact you are having in the patient care you provide. As you can see the visible results, it can be hard to think about doing something else, perhaps because you feel like you will not be making a real difference, but this is a thought that you must let go of as soon as possible. Within the healthcare and nursing industry, everyone makes a difference, no matter how small or even how unnoticeable it may be. If, for example, you became a family nursing practitioner, you would see that you are making a real difference to the lives of the families that you treat. You would be providing consistent and regular care, and this is the big difference as they may not have experienced this before.
Looking at Becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner
A family nursing practitioner is almost like a doctor with regards to the care and quality of service they provide, but the difference is an FNP is a lot more hands-on and personal. A doctor or general practitioner might see lots of patients and never really manage to form any lasting bonds or relationships with patients. In contrast, an FNP will work closely with the same family over several years, thus building up that bond and that stability of care, which people and families of all sizes need. As a family nursing practitioner, you still get to have the enjoyment of being within nursing, but you get to realize your potential at the same time too.
Returning to Studying
To advance your career and realize your true potential, you will need to return to studying. Returning to studying, even after a short break, can be difficult, and it can feel like an uphill struggle, but it must be seen in as positive a light and manner as possible because the benefits of studying far outweigh the negatives. Studying and advancing your knowledge will open new doors and opportunities for you. To make returning to study as easy on yourself as possible, it is vital that you think about where and when you want to study. As you will be most likely holding down a job at the same time as studying, you will want to think about exclusively studying only, simply because it is flexible, and it allows you to focus more on your studies than on your travel arrangements.
Studying Online Around Your Existing Commitments
Some universities, such as the Texas Woman’s University, offer good options if you’re looking at studying online. For nursing, for example, the Texas Woman’s University’s Online Nursing Programs will demonstrate how beneficial online learning really is. Getting the same quality of teaching and education online as you would on campus really is a no-brainer. When you take up studying online from the comfort of your own home, you get the opportunity to create a more harmonious and manageable work /life balance, which would certainly be a lot harder to attain if you were studying at a physical campus. Studying online allows you to study at a time and pace that is suitable to you and your existing commitments, which is good as it allows you to make the transition into studying that little bit easier on yourself and those around you.
Balancing Studying and Your Home Life
You may have just found a balance between your working life and your home life, and now that balance will change once more with studying entering the horizon. Studying can fit seamlessly into your life and your routine if you want it to and if you offer a degree of flexibility. When you are open to change and you allow change to happen, then you will find it much easier to balance your timetable and your commitments. To make the balance work, you must get everyone within your home on board. Everyone needs to be aware of what you are doing and why. If they are not on board, it can cause problems later down the line, and the last thing you need is more stress or pressure, so discuss and implement ways to find a suitable balance sooner rather than later.
Studying From Home Successfully
If you have never studied online and from home, then the prospect can be a little bit daunting and overwhelming, but it does not need to be. You can study from home successfully; all that you need is a lit bit of planning and organization. Having a separate area to study from within your home is always advantageous as this ensures that you can get the peace and quiet you need to study, and it ensures that other family members know when to respect your space and boundaries. Without a physical space or division within your home, you will find it difficult to study and study successfully, and this is not what you want as you want to enjoy the process as much as possible. So, to ensure that you get the most out of studying from home, you must focus and prioritize your study setup.
Setting Career Goals and Realizing Them
When you are studying, it always helps if you have career goals in mind. Setting goals, working towards them, and subsequently realizing them will help you get the most out of studying and the most out of your career. If you do not set career goals, then you may lose focus, and you may struggle to achieve what you want to and ultimately realize your full potential, which would, of course, be a shame. Setting career goals and regularly reviewing them will ensure that you maintain a positive and focused mindset and that you look forwards to what the future may bring and hold in a positive manner.
Landing Your Next Role
After your studies are complete, it is time to put everything into action; it is time to land your next role, that role that you have been studying for. Getting that FNP role and position is something you deserve and something you have been working towards. To ensure that you get the role, you need to ensure that your resume is looking good, and you need to ensure that you can sell yourself as well as possible. Even if you are going for an internal promotion at your existing workplace, you still need to ensure that you can sell yourself well. So, right now, start working on selling your skills, attributes, and knowledge.
Looking Forwards to Leadership
After securing your next role, there is nothing to stop you from pushing yourself and your ambition that little bit further. Within nursing, to make a difference, you need to be within a leadership role. If you want to make noticeable differences to the quality of care given or to the level of care given, then you will need to look forwards; you will need to secure a leadership position. A leadership role might be something you want to work towards within the next 5-10 years, but if you start focusing on it right now, it can start becoming a reality.
Reclaiming a Balance between Work and Life
When you are advancing your career within nursing, it can be difficult to balance and juggle everything that you have going on, both personally and professionally. Finding and reclaiming a balance between your work life and home life is essential. A balance will allow you to get the most out of your role, and it will ensure that you get back as much as you give. Without a balance, you may find that there is too much stress or pressure on you, which is, of course, not beneficial.
Focusing on Continuous Professional Development
When you are comfortable within a new role, there is no reason why you must stay in that role moving forwards. There are plenty of opportunities for professional development; all you must do is decide what you want to focus on achieving and why. To be the best healthcare professional that you can be, you must see professional development as a way of life; when you see it as something that must be done, then you will realize its importance, and it will fit seamlessly into your life rather than being seen as an add on.
Staying Within the Healthcare Industry
When you advance your nursing career and you become an FNP or leader, you do not have to stop there. There is no ceiling on where the healthcare industry can take you, and there is no limit to the changes and developments you can make. The healthcare industry is growing and evolving all the time, and it is important to see that you can always make a difference to patient care even if you are no longer a hands-on shift nurse. Opportunities within the healthcare industry are evolving all the time, and once you have your foot firmly in the door, the only thing that could hold you back is yourself.
Nursing is an industry that offers you lots of room and potential to grow. Setting goals and achieving them will ensure that you achieve just what you want to. Advancing your career to be the best that you can be is beneficial to yourself and those around you, and nothing should stand in your way of achieving your dreams and ambitions. Realizing your potential while making a positive impact is something that is distinct to the healthcare and nursing industry and is something that you would struggle to achieve anywhere else.