There is no denying that nurses are in demand globally and are an essential part of the healthcare sector. Since the nursing landscape is evolving day by day, more and more nurses are looking for ways to advance in their careers. Do you wish to diagnose and treat patients and offer the right treatment plan? Then, becoming a nurse practitioner might be just what you need.
A nurse practitioner (NP) is a licensed, independent nurse with a post-graduate or doctoral degree and advanced clinical experience. Nurse Practitioners are responsible for assessing patients’ conditions, diagnosing and treating illnesses, conducting and interpreting imaging and laboratory tests, and promoting overall health.
Undoubtedly, becoming a nurse practitioner is a huge step in the nursing profession and no easy feat. Therefore, many factors come into consideration when deciding whether or not you will become a successful nurse practitioner.
And while there are many areas in which nurse practitioners can specialize and advance in their careers. Yet, with the rise in the aging population and increase in chronic conditions, the need for Family Nurse Practitioners (FNP) is now more than ever.
So, if you have a passion for offering quality care to patients of all ages? Becoming an FNP online might be the right choice. As an FNP, you will be responsible for counseling patients on healthy lifestyles, diagnosing their medical condition, and creating treatment plans. Moreover, you don’t have to worry about family commitments and hectic work schedules to achieve higher education with an online degree.
There are many qualities and traits that, as a nurse practitioner, you must possess to take your nursing career to the next level. So without further ado, let’s dive into these below characteristics that will make you successful in your career as a nurse practitioner:
Empathy is all about the ability to understand and share someone’s feelings. In other words, it means putting yourself in another person’s shoes and understanding their point of view. Therefore, a nurse practitioner must have this unique key characteristic to succeed. Being empathetic to your patients will help you respond to the patients in a manner that shows you care about them genuinely. However, there are a few ways you can practice strengthening this quality.
A vital element to help you stay effective in your job and be successful is showing enthusiasm. You must be eager to perform your job duties and show excitement while doing so. After all, being enthusiastic will leave you curious. That way, you would be keen to learn and grow. It is an essential trait that every employer looks for in today’s healthcare system. And while it is true that nursing, by profession, is quite demanding. So staying enthusiastic round the clock might become difficult. If that is the case, don’t feel shy about taking a break.
- Effective Communication
Patients do not just value good communication skills. Instead, they expect that from you as an NP. Therefore, as a successful NP, you must have the ability to communicate with your patients, colleagues, and upper management effectively. However, good communication skills are not only expressing yourself clearly. You also need to have active listening skills. If you do not actively listen to your patient, chances are you might miss vital information. As a result, all your efforts to offer the best care to your patient might go down the drain.
- Analytical Skills
There is no one-size-fits-all approach when offering care as a health provider in the healthcare sector. After all, each patient and situation is different. Put it this way; every patient has a different medical condition and body. Therefore, you can’t offer the same treatment plan to all your patients. Strong analytical skills are necessary to collect accurate information, solve complex problems, and make prompt and rational decisions. One best practice to improve your analytical skills is playing brain games to enhance your creativity and problem-solving skills.
In addition to strong communication and analytical skills, good leadership skills are also necessary to become a successful nurse practitioner. Since the healthcare industry is evolving, more states now grant NPs greater autonomy. Thus, you must hone leadership skills to make complex decisions and deliver quality patient care. However, be mindful; good leadership skill isn’t watching your team by staying at one side and bossing everyone around. In contrast, good leadership combines different qualities such as confidence, communication, integrity, and delegation skills.
Another critical quality nurse practitioners must hone is tenacity. Tenacity refers to determination, perseverance, and resolve. As discussed above, there is no universal approach in the healthcare industry. Imagine this; you wrongly diagnosed a patient, or the treatment plan you offer doesn’t work out as you thought. Would you give up? That’s not possible. As an NP, you must think out-of-the-box and find a new solution to help your patient. After all, it’s a matter of someone’s life.
No patient would like to get treatment from a nurse practitioner who is cold and distant. That is why compassion is one of the most crucial attributes every nurse must possess to advance their career. Every day you will meet different patients. Each patient will have their unique pain or suffering. Thus, you must show you feel or care for them. Only then can you support them in their healing. The good thing about this trait is, it usually comes as natural to nurses.
Ranking on top among essential nurse practitioners’ quality is integrity. Integrity embodies being honest, ethical, and trustworthy. Answer this. How do you expect your patient to open up to you when you are not genuine or upfront with them? There is a high possibility that they might not tell you some vital information. Or worse, they don’t even seek treatment because they lost their trust in healthcare providers. And while integrity is essential for all professions, it is even more critical for medical professionals.
According to statistics, roughly 325,000 nurse practitioners are in the United States. And this number will continue to grow over the years. Moreover, the importance of this profession became more critical after the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic cases worldwide. Nurse practitioners today are trying to fill the gap of physicians to offer quality care to the increasing number of patients worldwide. And while this news might seem exciting to you, that’s only possible if you have the proper education, clinical knowledge, and set of essential skills. Therefore, make sure to develop and polish these qualities that can serve as the key to success in your nurse practitioner career.