Are you both a working registered nurse and a busy mom who is keen to boost her career and take the next step professionally? If so, you may be wondering what your options are, especially in terms of having to work around the little remaining time that you currently have on your hands. The great news is that it is possible to work, be a good mom, and further your education. The solution lies in furthering your studies online.
Studying nursing online offers a greater degree of flexibility
As a working RN and a mom, flexibility is non-negotiable. Luckily, there are numerous RN online programs dedicated to helping you move forward. The most popular of these programs is RN to BSN. These online courses:
- Allow you to work and study at the same time – no need to take time off to complete the course.
- Make it possible for you to complete the entire extent of your course online. You will rarely, if ever, be required to be anywhere in person.
- Do not insist that you are logged in at any specific times. You work completely at your own pace and according to the hours that suit you.
Studying nursing online means you will have better support
When studying nursing at a busy college, you will probably remember all too well how much of a challenge it could be to find someone to answer your questions or address your concerns in a timeous manner. That was likely due to the fact that there were hundreds of nursing students trying to do the same thing and only a certain number of reaching staff available to lend a hand.
Studying nursing online means that:
- You will be given 24/7 easy access to a mentor who you can contact effortlessly if you ever require assistance or support.
- You will be one of only a few students in your ‘class’, allowing for better, one on one attention and improving your chances of excelling in the course.
- Getting hold of someone for help will always be convenient and you can expect to receive an answer quickly and effectively so that you can continue more confidently with the program.
Studying nursing online is infinitely more affordable
There is no escaping the fact that kids are expensive. As a busy mom hoping to forward her career in the world of nursing, you will probably be on the look-out for the cheapest possible method in order to obtain a higher qualification. You’re in luck when it comes to studying nursing online. Research has shown RN online programs, and any online nursing programs for that matter, are much more affordable than the programs and courses on offer at traditional colleges and universities. In fact, you can expect to save hundreds of dollars per credit hour.
Furthermore, considering that you are already working as a RN, your employer may be willing to foot a portion of the bill. You will be improving your skills and they will be benefiting from this, after all. There is no harm in asking.
Studying nursing online allows you to develop other important life skills
When you opt to study nursing online, you will learn so much more than just what is included in your coursework. You will also have the opportunity to develop a number of incredible life skills that will aid you in excelling in both your home life and at work following the completion of your degree.
For example, you will:
- Enhance your problem solving skills. Despite the fact that you will have easy access to plenty of support throughout the duration of your online studies, there will be times when you run into challenges and obstacles along the way. Perhaps your child suddenly falls ill with a stomach bug over the weekend when you had planned to complete an important assignment and you need to find a way to look after them and get your assignment done in time? Or perhaps you are asked to work a longer shift at work but really need to do some revision ahead of your next test? In order to meet the requirements for being a good mom, nurse, and student, you will need to be able to solve problems and troubleshoot pretty much on a daily basis. Luckily, by the time you complete your degree, you can be sure that you will be more than ready to tackle the challenges that come with being a BSN prepared nurse.
- Self-confidence: There is no denying that you are taking on a mammoth feat in terms of being a mom, working, and studying. As a result, you will probably be wondering if it is even possible to do it all. So, just imagine how amazing it is going to feel when you complete your program and prove to yourself that you did do it all despite the obstacles along the way? This kind of success is guaranteed to boost your confidence and sky-rocket your career. The old saying is true – when you believe in yourself, there is nothing that you cannot do.
- Improved communication skills: It will be entirely up to you to ensure regular and consistent communication between you and your online lecturers and mentors. If you do not get in touch with them as you work through your coursework, they are likely to assume that all is in order. Therefore, when you have a question or a concern, you will need to approach them and make sure that you are understood. Ultimately, your communication skills are sure to improve substantially, especially in terms of the importance of following up with the patients that you treat in the near future.
Tips for juggling work, studies, and being a mom
Are you ready to accept this new and exciting challenge wholeheartedly? Great. Then you will probably be looking out for a few helpful tips to assist you through it. Here they are:
- Create a comprehensive and accessible calendar: It is important to be able to see a visual representation of your schedule when you have so much on your plate. Otherwise it is easy to forget about certain obligations, such as date night with your partner or a dance recital at your child’s school. Many working moms who have chosen to further their education recommend not only creating this calendar, but also sharing it with their partners and children (if they are old enough to make sense of it, that is). Doing so helps to avoid conflicts and to keep everyone on the same page.
- Prepare meals ahead of time. You will probably be relying on weekends to get through a lot of things that you are unable to do during the week, such as spending time with your family and catching up on your coursework. However, while it is probably the last thing you feel like doing, preparing meals for the following week is a great way in which to ensure that it is endlessly less chaotic. Prep as much as you can and freeze.
- Hire a cleaning service. Working, studying, and parenting all at once is one thing. Throwing in housekeeping too is quite another altogether. Hiring a cleaning service is costly, but if it is going to help reduce your stress levels and grant you more quality time with your partner and kids, it is worth it. If you can’t afford to pay a cleaning service to assist you every week, twice a month should be enough to give you the breather that you need.
- Keep extracurricular activities manageable. Don’t discourage your children from engaging in extracurricular activities just so that you can spend more time with them. However, there is nothing wrong with keeping them down to just once or twice a week. Not only will this avail you more opportunity to be with them, but it will also save you money that you can put towards that cleaning service as mentioned above.
- Take care of yourself. This is the most important piece of advice. In order to juggle all of these balls, you will need to ensure that you take proper care of yourself. That means making sleep, nutrition, and relaxation top priorities. You should also strive to do something physical every day – even if it means taking the dogs out on a leisurely stroll. The exercise and fresh air will have you feeling rejuvenated and less anxious about deadlines. Obviously, you should also pay close attention to your diet. Stock up on those nutrient-rich, superfoods that will give you the boost that you need in order to power through your to-do list. Think nuts, seeds, fruit, and vegetables.
- Ask for help when you need it. If ever you feel overwhelmed or you just cannot fulfill an obligation, ask for help, and don’t let it get you down. This stage of your life is temporary and, eventually, it will all have been worth it.
Enjoy this next chapter in your life. You can do it all.