Can introverts make good nurses?

May 9, 2016

Can Introverts Be Good Nurses?

If you’re outgoing and an extrovert, nursing may seem like a natural fit. It makes sense that extroverts can excel in a career in which they have to communicate all the time. After all, as a nurse, you’ll interact with patients, family members, doctors and other professionals. There may also be situations where you have to be assertive and speak up.

So what do you do if you are an introvert? if you tend to be a little less social and quieter than others? Can introverts make good nurses? The answer is yes!

First, keep in mind, most people are not 100 percent introverts or extroverts – they are a combination of the two. There might be situations where you tend to be quiet or reserved, but in certain circumstances, you may be more outgoing.

You Can Still Succeed

Even if you are mostly an introvert, you can still succeed as a nurse. In fact, many of the traits that introverts tend to have will make you a good nurse. For example, introverts are often good listeners. When you think of effective communication, you might believe that it only involves being articulate. But part of good communication is listening. Being a good listener is a crucial skill for all types of healthcare professionals.

In many cases, people who are introverts are observant. Since they tend to be quieter than their extrovert co-workers, introverts are often in tune with what’s going on around them. Nurses who are highly observant may notice subtle changes in their patients and catch problems early, which may improve patient outcomes.

If you consider yourself an introvert, you might be intuitive and have the ability to read people. Nurses who are introverts may be able to recognize the unspoken feelings of those around them, which can be a valuable skill both on and off the job.

Nurses who are introverts may also be more soft spoken than others. Your soft approach may help put patients at ease, which can come in handy as a nurse.

You can see that being an introvert is not necessarily a negative when it comes to a nursing career. Still, there can be a few disadvantages. For instance, you might not be that great at small talk with other staff, and you can come across as standoffish. You might also have a little trouble being assertive in some situations.

Give Yourself the Edge

There are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success. For example, a pre-nursing internship may help you become more comfortable in a medical setting.

A pre-nursing internship is always a good idea, but it may be particularly useful for nurses who are introverted. Gaining experience in the medical field may force you to interact with other nurses and allied healthcare workers. The more practice you get in various situations, the easier it may be to talk with all types of people.

As you gain experience and confidence, you’re likely to worry less about being an introvert, and you’ll have just as much passion and dedication as anyone.

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Gap Medics provides year-round hospital work experience for people aged 16 and over. Our shadowing placements offer a unique insight into the work of doctors, nurses, midwives, dentists and physician assistants – helping students to focus their career aspirations before embarking upon medical training.