How to Stop Self-Doubt When You’re a Nurse

Self-Doubt Nurse

Everyone feels some kind of self-doubt at some point in their lives, probably more than once. They might not like to admit it, and some might be able to put up a front that means it’s hard to tell when this is happening, but the fact is, from time to time, everyone is going to feel that they just aren’t good enough or that they can’t do whatever it is they need to do.

Self-doubt might be prevalent, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with it when it comes around. Self-doubt can be damaging, causing you to not push hard enough and to hold back because you’re afraid of making a mistake. This can be detrimental to your career, your relationships, and your happiness, not to mention the other people around you. So it’s a good idea to try to stop self-doubt as soon as you start to feel it.

It’s important for everyone to prevent self-doubt when they can, but for nurses, it really could be a matter of life and death. For nurses, the hesitation that comes with self-doubt could mean a patient isn’t treated in time or a mistake is made somehow. Therefore, if you’re a nurse and you sometimes suffer from self-doubt, as you are sure to do at times, it’s crucial you know how to get past this and start helping people again. Read on for some helpful advice.

Know You’re Not Alone

There are a number of things you need to do before you can be a nurse. You’ll need to make that all-important decision, of course, and also take the plunge and apply for a college degree in nursing. As well as this, you’ll need to put in all the hard work that goes with that degree, ensuring you learn as much as possible during your studies.

In order to do all of this, you need to believe that you can do it, and if self-doubt comes in now when you are just starting out, you might decide that nursing is not the right option for you, and therefore, you step away and do something else. This would be a shame if nursing was something you were interested in and wanted to do – not only would you be missing out on a career you could love, but the world will be missing out on a great nurse, which is something that is very important indeed, and much needed.

To get past this initial bout of self-doubt, it’s vital to remember that you’re not alone. No matter what challenges you come across when you’re choosing this career path and when you’re studying for it – and beyond that, when you start working and well into your career as well – there will always be people around to help you. Whether you have a mentor or simply people you can trust to talk to about whatever it is you need to talk about, the fact is that they will help you get past the issues and become a wonderful nurse. Nursing is a team effort, and you’ll never be truly alone.

Keep Learning

Although you probably won’t be aware that you’re starting to feel some kind of self-doubt, once it’s there in your mind, it’s very hard to remove. One way to reduce this self-doubt is to prove to yourself – and anyone else who needs to know – that you are good at what you do and that you have the capabilities required of an excellent nurse. This could mean continuing to learn as much as possible at all times. When you know you are completely up to date in terms of nursing practice and information, you’ll have a lot more confidence, and you’ll be able to move past any self-doubt because you have learned what you need to learn. Of course, this is not a one-off thing; you’ll have to keep learning throughout your career, but this is what makes nursing so fascinating; the fundamentals might stay the same, but a lot else is constantly changing.

There is a lot of on-the-job training you can do to enhance your knowledge, but if you want to also enhance your career, then you need to consider going back to college and taking an actual degree qualification. In this way, you can take up any promotions that might be available, proving once and for all that you are a good nurse. Nurses are busy, though, and going back to school can be hard to fit it. This is why something like an online DNP program is a great option. You can keep working and learn at your own pace from home, ensuring you gain the knowledge and qualification without having to take any time off work.

Know That Mistakes Happen

If there is one mantra that is going to help you more than any other and something that you can repeat to yourself if you are feeling any self-doubt, it’s that everyone makes mistakes. Although it’s not particularly pleasant to think about, sometimes you will make a mistake – you will make an error that results in a problem, and, as a nurse, that might be a serious one. When this happens (even if the mistake is actually very minor and causes no real issues at all), it is sure to cause you self-doubt and knock your confidence. It might even make you want to stop nursing altogether, depending on what happened.

This is why it’s so important to know that you’re not the only one this has happened to. Everyone has made and will make mistakes. Of course, that doesn’t mean you can be careless – far from it – but it does mean that if a mistake does occur, it might be easier for you to pick yourself up and move forward.

Remember Your Reason

When things are hard, and your self-doubt is making you wonder whether you should continue nursing, it’s important to remember your reason for becoming a nurse in the first place. What made you choose this specific career when there are so many others that you could have chosen?

Once you remember the reason for being a nurse, whether that’s because you wanted a rewarding career, you wanted to help people, or you felt that it was a good way to use your personal skills, keep that in mind. Remembering your reason will help you move forward because passion will crush self-doubt.