Nurses spend a great deal of time in social interaction with patients, families, doctors, and coworkers. For this reason, many people may think that nursing isn’t the best occupation choice for introverts.
The fact is introverts can make excellent nurses, particularly if they choose one of the nursing specialties that are best suited to their personality traits.
We’re going to help you out in your search because in this article we’re going to list some of the best nursing jobs for introverts.
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What is an introvert?
Before delving into which specialties within nursing would best align with the traits of introverts, let’s examine what sets introverts apart from others.
Contrary to what seems to have become a popular belief, introverts are not necessarily shy; they just tend to be more introspective, more focused on internal emotions and thoughts than on stimulation from sources outside themselves.
They do, however, tend to be more reserved, quiet, and calm than other personalities.
Additionally, introverts are prone to feeling more comfortable communicating with people one-on-one than in larger social situations.
They also tend to become regenerated (or have their energy replenished) by spending time alone, especially following periods of long periods spent in a great deal of social interaction with others. All of these traits can work very well for certain nursing specialties (source).
Best Nursing Jobs for Introverts
1. Operating room nurse
What does an OR nurse do?
Operating room nurses spend a good deal of their time in the OR itself, assisting the surgeons while they perform surgeries. But this isn’t all they do.
Yes, being in the actual operating room will take up many hours of your day if you become an OR nurse, but there is also a fair amount of time between surgeries that you’ll be expected to perform other nursing duties.
An OR nurse assesses a patient’s preoperative condition, needs, and concerns. OR nurses will also assess that patient’s conditions, needs, and concerns postoperatively. OR nurses prep both the patient as well as the operating table for surgery.
They also pass the necessary and requested surgical instruments to the surgeons and monitor a patient’s vital signs during surgery. Not surprisingly, OR nurses need excellent communications skills, as they typically work on teams.
How does being an OR nurse measure up for an introvert?
1. Working on a team: One of the reasons this specialty is good for introverts is because OR nurses often find themselves working with many of the same people all the time.
Introverts tend to need a smaller communications circle—a more intimate group of people with whom they often work. This means they have an opportunity to get to know their team members on a more personal level. This is an important component for the life and work of an introvert.
2. Compassionate: Introverts also tend to be more compassionate, which makes their personalities great candidates for the nursing field in general.
Compassion is especially necessary for patients feeling the fears surgical procedures can evoke. OR nurses must be able to give kind and empathetic attention to patients, making this nursing specialty a natural choice for introverts.
1. Not much time in solitude: Introverts ‘get a charge’ out of solitude. If an introvert has to spend a great deal of time in social interaction, he or she needs time to go off alone in order to recharge.
Time spent alone for an introvert generally is time well spent since this personality tends to enjoy alone time. Though OR nurses can get time throughout a day alone to feel rejuvenated, this valuable alone time can be quite limited.
Here are some helpful resources if you’re thinking about being an operating room nurse.
- What is OR Nursing?
- 5 Pros and Cons of Being an Operating Room Nurse
- ER vs. OR Nursing
- How to Become an OR Nurse: The Definitive Guide
If you’re ready to apply and start working as an operating room nurse, check out some of the OR nurse job postings on Monster.com.
2. Forensic nurse
What does a forensic nurse do?
A large part of a forensic nurse’s day is spent serving patients who have experienced violent crimes. Victims of sexual and domestic violence must be attended to with the utmost compassion. Forensic nurses also must be greatly attentive to details because they are the ones who preserve vital evidence for legal cases.
A forensic nurse does not spend his or her time in as wide or intense social interaction as do fellow nurses who often care for more patients. Forensic nurses’ social interactions tend to be focused on smaller groups of patients. They not only preserve medical evidence; they attend to a patient’s needs as well.
How does being a forensic nurse measure up for an introvert?
1. Smaller, more focused patient list: Forensic nurses generally don’t have as many patients as other nursing specialties do; their patient list is smaller and more focused.
They are required to spend less time in social interaction with large groups—a fact that works exceptionally well for the personality traits associated with introverts who tend to prefer more one-on-one interaction.
2. Must be compassionate and empathetic: Introverts are caring, empathetic people who have a great deal of compassion. The victims of violent crimes whom forensic nurses must deal with on a daily basis need caregivers to treat them with great kindness and empathy, even as they collect evidence to be used in legal cases.
1. Too much empathy: There is such a thing as too much compassion. Some introverts may be too emotionally invested in their patients to work in forensic nursing since the victims of violent crime are already traumatized. They need to be treated kindly and respectfully, but they do not need their emotions to be escalated.
If you’re ready to work as a forensic nurse check out some of the forensic nurse job postings on Monster.com.
3. Nurse case manager
What does a nurse case manager do?
Nurse case managers coordinate all care aspects of patients assigned to them. They assess and evaluate new patients. They implement patient healthcare plans and ensure that their departments are in compliance with treatment costs while at the same time providing the most effective care possible.
Nurse case managers are responsible for many administrative tasks, including identifying insurance coverage for patients within their department and developing a case management plan. They also are tasked with advocating for patients as well as communicating with families.
How does being a nurse case manager measure up for an introvert?
1. One-on-one interaction: Nurse case management can be an excellent specialty for introverts because they tend to feel more comfortable dealing with people one-on-one.
2. Advocating for patients: Introverts tend to have a very strong sense of justice, which makes the advocacy necessary in nurse case management a likely specialty to which an introvert can easily gravitate.
3. Alone time: Introverts are not necessarily shy, as many people tend to think. They just like their alone time, which is why nurse case management can work well for them.
As a case manager, a nurse can get a lot of alone time to work on administrative tasks. This alone time will help him or her to re-energize, particularly if he/she’s spent a good part of her day interacting with families of patients.
1. Interacting with family members: Because introverts tend to enjoy more one-on-one, focused contact, some of them may feel less comfortable communicating and interacting with family members of patients.
If you’re ready to find a job as a nurse case manager check out some of the nurse case manager postings on Monster.com.
4. Legal nurse consultant
What does a legal nurse consultant do?
Legal nurse consultants work in law firms, healthcare institutions, insurance companies, private consulting firms, or in their own private practices. Legal nurse consultants often work in specialized fields, such as malpractice, insurance, or product liability.
Legal nurse consultants can have a broad and wide variety of duties, many of which can be very analytical in nature. They may be tasked with educating clients and attorneys regarding standards of care or malpractice components.
Often, legal nurse consultants are called upon to testify in legal cases, prepare reports regarding expert witnesses, interview witnesses, and prepare depositions.
How does being a legal nurse consultant measure up for an introvert?
1. Analytical and administrative work: Introverts tend to love working alone, which can make legal nurse consultant an ideal choice for their personalities.
Those nurses who choose to work as legal consultants often spend a great deal of time analyzing data, preparing various types of reports, and helping to assemble cases for court. The alone time they spend performing these tasks often strengthens their confidence and refresh their resolve.
2. Limited social interaction: Though legal nurse consultants do spend time interacting with attorneys, litigants, and families, their time communicating with people tends to be more limited than other nurse specialties.
1. Testifying in court: Though introverts are not necessarily shy as some people tend to believe, they are not always comfortable speaking in front of people.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that an introvert wouldn’t make an excellent legal nurse consultant. It just means that he or she may need to choose a specialized field in which testifying in front of people in court will not be necessary.
If you’re ready to apply to some legal nurse consultant job positions check out some of the legal nurse consultant job postings on Monster.com.
5. Utilization review nurse
What does a utilization review nurse do?
Utilization review nurses are nurses who generally work in administration rather than on the medical floor interacting with and caring for patients.
A utilization review nurse works ‘behind the scenes’ of healthcare performing such administrative tasks as:
- Reviewing cases
- Reviewing patients’ healthcare plans
- Making recommendations concerning suitability and consistency of care plans
- Determining necessity or appropriateness of medications, therapies, treatments, or surgical procedures.
The duties utilization review nurses perform are not, however, limited to administrative tasks.
These nurses also speak with patients regarding their care, perform peer-to-peer reviews, interact with doctors and fellow nurses, communicate with case managers and participate in rounds.
The list goes on and on. Some may be highly visible within their departments, as they can be involved in the care plans of many patients at once.
How does being a utilization review nurse measure up for an introvert?
1. Analytical and administrative work: As with most of the recommendations on our list, utilization review nurse can be an excellent specialization for introverts because of the hours spent working alone performing administrative and analytical tasks.
2. Advocating for patients: Because introverts typically feel an intense sense of social justice, being a utilization review nurse can work well for their personalities because these nurses are often tasked with analyzing and advocating for more appropriate care plans.
1. Large social interaction circle: Utilization review nurses can find themselves communicating and interacting with many people, which often makes introverts feel uncomfortable.
If you’re ready to find a job as a UR nurse check out some of the nurse utilization review job postings on Monster.com.
6. Telephone triage nurse
What does a telephone triage nurse do?
The specialty of telephone triage, or ‘telehealth’ nurse, is a newer specialty within nursing. These nurses provide care by speaking with patients over the phone or over the internet via a webcam.
They work remotely, discussing health issues experienced by patients, assessing and evaluating their symptoms, and providing them with medical counsel.
Because telehealth or telephone triage nursing is remote, this field of nursing can be performed literally from anywhere in the world that the necessary technology exists.
Telephone triage nurses have grown exponentially since their inception in the past decade or so, due not only to the cost-effectiveness for both patients and healthcare organizations but also the convenience (source).
How does being a telephone triage nurse measure up for an introvert?
1. Remote interaction: Though introverts are not necessarily shy, they can sometimes feel uncomfortable communicating with people, particularly in larger groups.
Being able to work remotely either via telephone or internet makes telephone triage nurse an ideal specialty for introverts because talking over the phone or via web came with someone can be empowering for an introverted personality.
2. Limited social interaction time: Nurses who deal with patients remotely by talking to them on the phone or through a webcam spend less time in interactions with patients.
This fact can make introverts feel more at ease because they never have to spend a great deal of time in communication with any one patient.
1. Still new: Telephone triage nursing is a very young specialty. Some may even say it’s still in the experimental stages. For this reason, all the advantages and disadvantages may not yet be known.
However, as far as a nursing specialty for introverts goes, being a telephone triage nurse may not have any negatives! Perhaps only time will tell.
If you’re ready to find a job as a telephone triage nurse check out some of the telephone triage nurse job postings on Monster.com.
If you’re an introvert, who would like to be a nurse, but you’re thinking nursing may not be right for you because you’ll have to spend a lot of time in social interactions, think again.
Introverts can make superb nurses.
They are introspective, analytical, empathetic, compassionate, and excellent listeners—all traits each patient in every single hospital, doctor’s office, and telehealth service on the planet desperately needs.
Are there any other nurse jobs introverts would really like? Let us know below.