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7 Things to Learn from a "Lifer" Nurse

Prisca Smith | Scrubs Magazine


1. Lifers are calmer in emergencies. Whereas I tend to still freeze up a bit during true emergencies, the experienced nurse moves with a fluidity and assuridity that is remarkable. They don’t seem to question their actions and I can see how refined their critical thinking has become.



Stressed Out? How Nurses Can Regain Some Calm

#2: Communication That Works →


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    nursejanet

    over 3 years ago

    8 comments

    I've been a nurse for 30 years; first, I was an LPN, then RN, then received a BSN. I've done home care for five years recently, and started out in home care, then went on to do other things. I think that lifers are less quick to react in a situation, giving it time to change or not. I am generally calmer than nurses who have not been in the profession as long as I have. I think that older nurses have a kind of intuition. One time I told a doctor that I thought the patient was going "sour". He didn't believe me, said there was no empiric evidence.. He lost that patient in a code the next day. I reminded him later; he said i was right.

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    casskemp

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    most lifers I know do not have Masters degrees, they have 3yr RN diplomas and lived and breathed the hospital where they went to school and had a literal hands on schooling unlike today

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    DebbieMck

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    KUDOS! to ScotS. I am 57 and just starting an RN-BSN program. One is never too old to learn.

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    ScotS

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    Lifer... Probably..I'm 55yo m just starting a 2y RN-BSN program.

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    JennyGK

    almost 4 years ago

    198 comments

    Good advice.

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    brienza

    almost 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I am a Lifer,seasoned LPN. My specialty is Peds. I have 34 yrs. experience. I was Peds hospital staff nurse for 17 1/2 yr.,then went to work for a clinic in Peds.Now I work with a solo Pediatrician in her office part time.I always love Nursing.I want to stress that in Pediatrics,you have to earn the Parent's trust and confidence before you reach out to their children.Then it is easy to do what you have to do. Also,have a sense of humor when it is needed.I will retire when my Dr. retires. That is what we plan. I am her only Nurse-have been for 14 yrs now.I am in college-will graduate in May with a History Degree. I will work in our museum as my retirement career. I am there now part time.Our hospital is celebrating 100 years and I am working with them and the museum to have a exhibit and a time-line to educate the community.I get to use both of my Loves in this project.

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    Maerzie

    almost 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I was a nursing "lifer", and I'd say it takes the same qualities as a good marriage: consideration, keeping informed, communication, cooperation, honesty, determination, love, empathy, and "sticktuitivity", and not necessarily in that order. If "divorce" is not an option, you know you MUST make it work. Obviously, since you are saying you want to be a "lifer", you already know most of these things. You definitely won't always get your own way. Each struggle you survive is a learning opportunity and earns your "wisdom" for you.

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    gr09

    almost 4 years ago

    4 comments

    Nice article.

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    HerbalNurse

    about 4 years ago

    466 comments

    20+ years. Nice article.

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    FLIGHTRN197

    about 4 years ago

    6 comments

    As a very seasoned nurse: see one, do one, teach one, Be calm grasshopper, those who rush don't see the real reason why you became a nurse!

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    GilMichaeli

    about 4 years ago

    6 comments

    Is there such a word as assuridity?

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    shellman

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    Excellent article. Reading this can help someone like me, who is thinking of entering nursing, determine if I have what it takes to be a good nurse. I have some things to work on but I may get a good base when I start training. I am thankful to the author for thinking ahead for herself, and submitting the article for others.

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    cab9960

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I've been in the nursing profession for 26+ years! Unbelievable when I really think about it. I've run the gambit starting as a CNA, then LVN (for 10 years), and now RN for 16 years. I started with an associates, then BSN, now MBA in Healthcare Management. I spent 10 years in middle to upper management (CNO) and now back to basics working as a staff nurse in an ambulatory surgery center. No weekends, no holidays, very little call. Regrets? Absolutely. The grass is not always greener...I'm less stressed, enjoy more patient contact, and have more free time to enjoy my career until retirement. My acquired management skills are a + when working once again as a staff nurse.

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    catzhouz

    about 4 years ago

    6 comments

    I too am a lifer. I have 33 + years as a nurse. I specialize in geriatrics. I chose this area as I was afraid of "old" people. I have learned the art of respect that I think we sometimes forget. Your article has discribed the "lifer' quite well. I like to think I have been kind to the new comers so that they don't run. Teaching these "kids" is the best way for harmony on the shift and cohesion of the staff. To the "kids" I wish you the best, listen well and remain open to changes.

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    motrn

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I am currently retired & have been a nurse 32 years-But I am getting ready to go back to work for another 5-8 years. Being a NURSE is anintegral part of my Identy. I haveworked in a wide variety of settings with a lot of New nurses & hope I have been kind to them.One of the tragedies of Nursing is how we "eat our Young"-we push them into High stress ,paperwork filled jungles without proper support. This nurse is wise to recognize what keeps us lifers in the profession-YOU GO GIRL(& GUYS)!!

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