Nursing is much more than a career; it truly is a calling. It takes a special kind of compassionate personality, calm head to care for people in their times of need. Below are the qualities of a good nurse.
Qualities of a Good Nurse
The number one quality of a good nurse is caring. If you do not care about others and yourself, you cannot be compassionate and provide quality care to others. A great nurse is able to do their job effectively while also showing compassion, concern, and sympathy for each individual they serve.
- Communication skills
Communication skills are one of the most important requirements of a nurse’s job—both following directions and communicating with patients and families. Patients who are sick or suffering often are not in a position of strength to speak up for themselves. Patients and families rely primarily on their nurses for this kind of support. For a good nurse, being supportive includes being an effective advocate for the patient when you anticipate a problem or see a concern that needs to be addressed.
Caring, compassion, and empathy sometimes are confused as one and the same, but there is an important distinction. Empathy is the ability to really hear and share a patient’s feelings. For a nurse, this doesn’t mean you always have to agree with what a patient or their family thinks. And for your own self-preservation, you don’t need to internalize the pain and suffering they may be experiencing. But it is very important that you listen and try to understand where they’re coming from.
A great nurse can make each patient feel seen and heard, without judgment, and with a recognition that each individual has their own valid set of values, life experiences, and perspectives.
- Attention to detail
When it comes to providing medical care, attention to detail is crucial. Even in the busiest, hectic environment, a good nurse must be detail-oriented, making sure that instructions are followed to the letter, ensuring proper medication dosages, and keeping accurate records.
In the home care setting, a nurse serves as the detail-oriented coordinator of patient care. A good nurse will be the first to notice subtle changes in a patient’s medical condition and alert physicians and other members of a health care team to respond in ways that can avoid a serious adverse health event or unnecessary hospitalization.
- Problem-solving skills
Similarly, a great nurse exercises excellent judgment and can think quickly to anticipate and address problems.
Being set in one’s ways is not a useful quality for a nurse. Providing excellent health care can be very dynamic and unpredictable at times. Therefore, a great nurse is willing and able to be flexible and adapt to any unforeseen circumstance.
In the day-to-day provision of health care, it is up to nurses to sometimes juggle hectic schedules and competing demands, to make calm decisions and respond to unexpected events effectively, and often, to find creative ways to make a difference for patients in the limited time you are able to spend with them.
Decision-making on the job can be a delicate balancing act, and when it comes to nursing, respect goes a long way. So whatever may come, it is important for a good nurse to respect healthy boundaries and to respect all of the diverse people you serve and work with.
A nurse who exercises respect for all coworkers, patients, and families will earn a high level of respect in return. This quality is demonstrated by a professional demeanor, mindfulness for rules and confidentiality, and high regard for each patient’s wishes.
In the home care setting, when a nurse enters a patient’s home, they enter the patient’s life. So it is crucial to get to know each patient and their family as individuals and to respectfully and unobtrusively work in concert with their desires and schedules.
To create a great career in nursing that works for you, it is important to really know yourself. Not every work environment will be the best fit for you. Because some nurses thrive on the excitement of a busy emergency ward. Others prefer the more quiet, longer-term, one-on-one attention they can give patients in the home care setting.
A good nurse will enjoy a long and fulfilling career by being self-aware and gravitating to the kinds of work that best suit their own personality, priorities, interests, and physical stamina.
- Desire to keep learning
Medical knowledge and technology are advancing very rapidly. Therefore, a great nurse must have a genuine sense of curiosity to keep working on their professional development, improving their skills, and learning new things.
Health care is constantly changing and a great nurse changes with it and stays knowledgeable of all things. If you have any inquiries, visit our collegenursinghelp.com for more information.