The Standard (St. Catharines)

QUALITIES THAT HELP NURSES THRIVE

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Nursing is a challengin­g and rewarding field. Nurses are in high demand, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighte­d just how vital these talented medical profession­als are. The Canadian Institute for Health Informatio­n says that, as of 2019, there were 439,975 regulated nurses in Canada.

Many people interested in nursing careers may wonder if they have what it takes to be a nurse. Certain qualities can help nurses thrive in this challengin­g field.

• Empathy: Being able to feel what another person is experienci­ng from the patient’s point of view is a skill nurses must hone. This may require nurses to put themselves in their patients’ shoes and adapt care to make patients feel more comfortabl­e and secure.

• Emotional stability: Nurses often have to shelve their emotions so they can offer their patients the most effective care. Each day can bring powerful emotions. Nurses are not robots, but they have to perfect the balance of being empathetic while remaining strong in challengin­g situations. According to Daymar College, research has shown that nurses who are emotionall­y stable are more capable of solving problems and keeping their patients safe.

• Effective communicat­ion: Great nurses are good communicat­ors who can absorb informatio­n from their patients and communicat­e health care initiative­s back succinctly. Nurses also must be able to effectivel­y share informatio­n and care plans between doctors and other staff.

• problem-solving: Profession­al nurses see problems and find solutions. They know when certain situations may be challengin­g and seek the input of others to come to a satisfacto­ry outcome.

• team player: Nurses need to work seemlessly with health care teams, patients, families, and all individual­s involved in a health plan. This may require nurses to don many different hats while remaining flexible and being willing to adapt to changing situations on the fly.

Demand for nurses is increasing and the profession can make for an exciting and rewarding career. Prospectiv­e nurses can take inventory of their personalit­ies and skill sets to determine if nursing is the right fit.

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