NURSING: Learn it, Live it, Love it!

Nursing: Learn It, Live It, Love it!

By: Noel D. De Ocampo, MSN/ED, RN
March 30, 2010

Four years in nursing school (two years to some, it took me seven). You learn the normal, the not so normal, diseases, cures for the curable, and options for the incurables. You did clinical rotations, you learn best clinical practices, you read books (lots), and prepared case presentations. You thought you have it all to be a successful nurse, but….

First year at work (if you find one) and volunteering at a government hospital was exciting. It’s really cool because now you’re working side by side with a nurse who used to be your clinical instructor. Now you’re colleagues, not teacher-student. It’s pretty awesome, too because now you can call yourself a professional. Are you sure?

You encountered a patient in the unit who is now becoming more anxious because of an impending invasive procedure. He called you and rudely said, “Hey, Bruce Lee, you look so young. Do you really know what you’re doing?” You reacted and said, “Shut your f…ing mouth!” In the Philippines, you may be able to get away with it, but not without reprimand. In the U.S., you’re lucky if you don’t get fired (I can’t speak about same cases in other countries). You became reactive. It is such a huge mistake that most nurses do. It is very much unacceptable. Completely ignoring how the patient is feeling at that moment.

Now you’re working with another nurse, a “ten year veteran.” You feel supported, but a bit threatened, and at the same time, you feel like this nurse is making you do all the work. You’re not able to speak up because you’re afraid of negative repercussions. You decided to tell the supervisor who didn’t do anything about it, then you found out the supervisor and the nurse you are complaining about are classmates in nursing school and have been friends since high school. Now you know that they’re talking about you. What do you do?

Every nurse will encounter many more surprising scenarios and many unpleasant workplace experiences. Nursing is not only about treating a patient’s known disease, but also knowing what other “hidden” needs they have. It is a game of anticipation, a game of utmost preparation. A sport that is almost impossible to win. Nurses must become skilled on how to be conscious of every word they utter and wary of every body language and gestures they make. It is not to say that nurses should let patients become abusive, but who should be defending the patient? Aren’t nurses the patients’ advocates?

Every nurse will also come across “problem coworkers”. Actual or perceived, these are expected and must be handled in a professional manner. Avoiding to address a problem with a colleague will not only result in a dreadful workplace, but also creates a negative atmosphere within a certain unit, thus creating a non-therapeutic environment which encourages poor quality of care. Let’s face it. Let’s work it. Talk about it and build a stronger work community. Be open, don’t be confrontational. BE PROFESSIONAL!

© 2010, Filipino Nurses. All rights reserved. DISCLAIMER: The accuracy of all articles contained in this website are the responsibility of their respective authors. All articles are for informational purposes only and are NOT intended to replace the advice of a doctor. The owner of this site disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on these information. If you have any health-related questions, please consult your physician. If you feel ill, please seek medical attention immediately.

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About Noel De Ocampo 8 Articles
Hi All, Thank you for visiting. Not much content yet, but I hope to create a site for us, Filipino nurses, to have a place where we can exchange information and help each other to better ourselves and all the Filipino nurse communities around the world. I'm based in California, USA and have been living here since 1992. Please feel free to send me questions or inquiries regarding issues about nursing and issues faced by Filipino nurses here in the U.S. You may also send me important information to post if you think it will benefit our fellow nurses. I'm looking forward to hearing from you all. Thank you very much!!!
  • Anonymous

    I need to take intense refresher course for Nursing Board Exams…One that requires 4-5 months of lecture because I've started working at a different field of work for almost 4 years…can you suggest me anything? thanks 🙂

  • International MedLink

    We offer an online course that was developed for us by the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing in the U.S. It contains approximately 40 hours of video lecture by Vanderbilt professors and instructors. WE have been using it in the Philippines for the past 5 years for NCLEX and CGFNS preparation with a higher than average pass rate and some nurses have used it as a refresher to study for their PRC exams.

    Our company is International MedLink, Inc. and we have offices in Manila and Cebu. I encourage you to visit our website ( to learn more about the course. You can also contact us at [email protected] and we can give you more information and can also put you in contact with our offices if you need a place to work on your review.

  • Anonymous

    I'm a registered nurse in the Philippines and wasn't able to practice my profession. At the moment I am working as a assistant carer here in the Uk as I read the NMC requirements for Overseas nurses program (adaptation for nurses) I have learned that it requires a 12mos. nursing experice which I don't have even a volunteer experinece. Can anyone advice me what to do as I really want to practice my profession as a nurse and be able to register in the Uk or elsewher wher I can work as a nurse…Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    the real battle begins by working at the hospital.. I realize that what we do as students before is really far different now that i am a staff already.. not only you will build a good relationship on your co-nurses but also on the doctors, lab staff, housekeepers, and every hospital employee.. it's really hard at first.. but we can do it!!