Nursing: Not a Dead End

After getting that hard-earned nursing license, where are you now?

Are you one of those who flourished and living their dreams or are you like the rest who are famished and on the verge of giving up their hopes of getting to the “land of milk and honey”?

Regardless of your answer, we all know that every nurse is struggling and no one can argue on that. Perhaps, you are finding it hard to maintain your job, to make ends meet, to juggle your professional and personal lives, to deal with your coworkers, to provide quality care to your patients, or to decide whether to push through with Nursing or not. Name it, nurses struggle with it. However, we already know that Nursing is not a piece of cake to begin with. And now that “Nursing” as a financially-rewarding profession has lost its sparkle over the years (at least for those who consider Nursing as such), we can never blame anyone but ourselves for the fact that the number of unemployed /underemployed nurses in the country has reached its 300,000+ mark this year. For this reason, we are occasionally faced with the same question: “Is there really a life after Nursing?”

I will bravely respond to that by saying “Yes, there is!” but it depends if you will look at the glass as half-empty or half-full. But of course, you can never make it to this life by relying on optimism alone. Optimism with passion and determination will take anyone in greater heights full of rare opportunities. But then again, one must have the passion to push through…

Let’s start with this question: Do you really love Nursing with all your heart and soul? Do you still see yourself working as a nurse for the next 10 years? 20 years? or for the rest of your life?

I know a lot of nursing graduates who just took Nursing for a lot of wrong reasons and this is one of the reasons why I’m asking you the question. Ask yourself, “Am I one of them?” Nursing is a serious job that entails high level of accuracy, dedication, and untarnished caring attitude. We all know that like doctors, nurses handle real lives and thus considered as practicing the intricate art of Nursing. Hence, if your heart has been longing for something else, then do yourself a big favor and go after what you really want to do in life. I know it’s not easy but if you already made a mistake by choosing the course you really didn’t like in the first place then what is the sense of making your life a living purgatory by pursuing something you’re not passionate about? If you want something, better go for it now than to spend the rest of your life in regrets. Listen, we all make mistakes but remember that it’s not how strong you start but how well you finish in life that matters.Listen to your heart and don’t pretend that you love Nursing when, in reality, you actually don’t. Love for Nursing should always be unconditional, not half-baked.

On the other hand, if you think you have what it takes to be a full-fledged nurse, or you have the heart to pursue the profession that you sometimes consider yourself as a reincarnated version of our dear Florence Nightingale, then good for you and good luck for the path you choose. Nursing is a rewarding profession but challenging at the same time. Life after your Nursing degree is assured already as long as you have the right kind of mentality and disposition for the profession. Nursing is not just confined within the four corners of the hospital so you ought to think outside the box especially if nursing jobs inside hospitals are just as rare as precious gems. Your survival will never be a problem as long as you focus on your patients’ survival. In the Philippines,for example, signing yourself up as an unpaid trainee or volunteer is already a test of survival itself. You should never complain and always put your best foot forward on your everyday hospital journey. If you really have that “secret” ingredient, then hardships for you will just be part of the learning process and securing a nursing job overseas will just come as an added bonus for all your sacrifices and not the “ultimate” goal of all your goals.

Though most of us are still wondering what kind of future awaits our nurses, let’s always remember that there is “life” after Nursing and that this profession is not a dead end that could limit someone from going after what he/she really wants. Life is all about choices and listening to one’s heart. You don’t have to ask for a “sign” to pursue something because if that is really your passion, it will just chase and haunt you every single moment of your life. Life is too short so if Nursing is your true calling then you’re lucky for having such a gentle heart but if your passion leads you to something else, grab it and start anew. There’s more to life than blaming your school, the government, your family, Nursing or even God for ending up a schmuck without any job at all. Possibilities are endless if you just open your eyes, embrace every difficulty, and accept the truth that there is life after Nursing.

© 2011, 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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  • av2003

    I had officemates who are licensed nurses who worked as secretaries. When the time came for the demand for nurses, they applied for nursing positions abroad. Its not the end for the present graduate nurses in the Philippines, you can work as med. representative companies, be a medical transcripionist, teach in college or high school etc. Just be productive at the moment, we are buying time each day of our lives. If there is a way, there is a will. Your time will come to practice your profession, just be patient. Good luck.

    • There is always hope to go abroad. It is sad that Nurses here need to leave their own country in order to better themselves but the land of dreams awaits you all in the LUCKY COUNTRY being Australia.I have many friends here in the Philippines who I have helped to get registered in Australia but you have to take the next step and that will always mean a certain amount of sacrifices and hard work.The registration process in Australia is long and expensive but certainly worth it in the long run.Just give us a call or send us an email and we will try to help in any way that we or email me at [email protected]

  • Very well said!
    I have been a graduate for 5 years now yet my goal of being an EMPLOYED R.N. has not come my way yet but I’m not giving up hope… I have struggled & been underemployed but still my desire to be a nurse is still there that is why I worked as an Au pair for in Switzerland & Norway hoping that one day all my hard work will pay off.
    If you’re passionate & want to achieve a certain goal you’ll do anything & everything to get it…same with nursing! 🙂

  • I remember I wanted to be a nurse too because of the reasons you mentioned. I know some that are successful and some not so successful in being a nurse.

  • Jose de Perio

    Very well-written article about Nursing….Thank’s….

  • I graduated BSN 1989, and been in Chicago since 1992. We are lucky to have a lot of job offers at that time.. I just hope that those who passed their board exam continue to have dream that someday they can practice this profession. Try to volunteer, and find job somewhere else related to your nursing so you can include that in your resume and help build your confidence. Nursing is very good profession that will reward you financially and spiritually. It feels good if you are able to help others that are sick and make a difference in their life through your knowledge and expertise.

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  • oryxman

    I beg to dis agree with your thoughts about Nurse or the Profession itself,yes its true that un epmloyed Registered Nurses reach 300K or more,well did you ask them if they are un employed as an individual person or being a Nurse itself?
    The answer is no right,because out of that 300K i guess others practice different fields that open up for them,well nothing is wrong with that sabi nga basta desenteng trabaho at wala kang nilalabag na batas dapat mong ipagmalaki.
    About your