While it is much easier to revel in the knowledge of our strengths and bask in the praise of others, it is time to stop beating ourselves with our weaknesses. Who, as an adult nurse, needs to be reminded of those anymore? High time for respect for nursing interventions, the backbone of our nursing profession!
That you know what your personal skill weaknesses happen to be is all that matters. That you spend any time at all trying to change a weak skill into a strong skill at this stage of life is a waste of valuable time. Abandon the Weaknesses! Focus on your strength. That will allow you to be good at nursing interventions and enhance your patients’ health and wellbeing.
A strength is not necessarily defined as ‘something we are good at’ but, rather as something we merely enjoy. It is an activity that completely envelopes our minds and hearts while we are engaged in it. We enjoy the time spent and we are inspired when we are done. I enjoy teaching future nurses how to pass the GED and I know I am very effective. Without a high school diploma or GED, there’s no way anyone can get into the world of nursing.
A weakness is a skill that probably should not be used to earn a living – a good living, that is. If you cannot sing in tune, starring roles in Broadway musicals are usually out of the question. Not being able to speak to large groups means elected high political office and motivational speaking can be taken off the table. And, not being able to expertly run and leap-in-stride absolutely means Olympic Gold in the High Hurdles is not in your future. So, if caring for other people isn’t your thing, don’t try to be a nurse. It’s just as simple as that.
I am not inferring that you should abandon a weakness if you enjoy the activity. Hobby-like attention to learning to sing can be extremely fulfilling and relaxing. However, if you truly want to improve an area of your life – both financially and inter-personally …go with a strength, not a weakness and don’t be afraid of any interventions. Do not chase down a known weakness and plan to make that skill your income-producing cash-cow. It will not work well and you will feel miserably unsuccessful. (Think: surgeons that wanted to be ministers; engineers that wanted to be artists.)
When we put effort and time and education dollars toward skill-strengths, say public speaking, we have the opportunity to raise that strength from “Average – Natural Ability” to “Fantastic!” When we put our effort and time and education toward a skill weakness, say singing in tune, we have the opportunity to raise that weakness from “Really Poor – No Natural Ability” to “Average”. We get more out of strengthening a natural ability than we will ever get out of attempting to strengthen a weakness. Read also this post on the ten things you must absolutely know to be a Registered Nurse.
How did this thinking of “I need to work on my ability to intervene, when necessary” even start? It started during the Middle School and High School years of our lives. The Fun Class (Math, English, Science, Reading, Writing, Chess, Football, Soccer, Baseball, Basketball, Spanish, Band, Choir, etc…) – was fun! Making friends was easy and we could spend hours in their company.
The dreaded ‘not fun class’ (see list above) was a struggle. We struggled and pushed ourselves because we had to maintain a minimum passing grade so that we remained eligible to do the other activity that we enjoyed, but we tired of the struggle and wished the annoyance would end. The older we got, the less we liked it, but the better we got at getting by. An obvious weakness was demanded to be at least average while the strength was supported to be great and not be afraid of intervention with the goal of improving your patients’ health!
… You are an adult now. There are no demands that your weaknesses be “at least average”. There are grand supports however for your strengths to be great! So use your strengths in your professional setting to become a good nurse. And if you take on a job as an RN, you’ll always be asked: “Are you new here, RN?”
Define your strengths (activities that excite your senses).
Discover your supports. (i.e. mentors, physicians, books, continuing education, college courses)
Begin the pursuit.
AND ABANDON YOUR WEAKNESSES!… you do not need them any longer to remain eligible to play. When needed (and to be honest, that’s about all the time), nursing interventions are not only a great good but absolutely required for the wellbeing and cure of our patients!