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  • Writer's pictureSara

How Many Hats?

I was talking to someone once about some of the things I have done in the last five decades and they looked at me like I was telling a tall story, they were unable to conceive that I had tried so many different jobs and accumulated a whole portfolio of skills for my own knowledge and support of others.

I am a perpetual student

I am always learning and acquiring knowledge because I am constantly curious about what makes us tick. I love observing people, not to be confused with loving people in general. My observations of people have led me to believe that some are like oil and others are water and will not mix well unless you add an emollient. That is probably why we are attracted to hang out with people who make us feel settled. But there are those of us who like an adrenaline surge and will dabble with human beings who live life dangerously or are unpredictable - these episodes might need to be limited to ensure longevity of life.

I digress - I had been exploring my different hats - and I realised that I have experienced quite a few roles even whilst within my registered nursing role. I was able to incorporate being a training officer and healthcare governance lead for five years at the same time. Whilst on operational tour I often added the role of infection control co-ordinator and acute pain lead, one tour I was also the unit health advisor - I did become obsessed with the cleanliness of the toilets. To keep people healthy we needed to start with the basics. I was able to see how my different roles were integrated using a range of skills which primarily required a good level of organisation and understanding of principles that I felt were integral to being a competent nurse.

If you pick apart what a nurse is trained to do, and what a nurse is capable of doing using the concept of transferable skills it is no wonder that they are a desirable commodity by wider industry and potential partners thinking of retirement.

I look at my early roles - Groom this set me up well for clearing up muck and sweeping the floor I don't think I ever let go of my interest in keeping the place clean and tidy. My role as a groom also taught me early on that it didn't matter what my job description said, If someone was needed for shit jobs, I was the lowest common denominator as the paid help so the task was mine - and this does equate rather well to how often jobs that other people do not want to do fall into the lap of the nursing staff.

Bar Maid - I can equate calling time at the bar with dealing with difficult conversations or patients under the influence of anaesthetic drugs. Can you see where I am going with this?


I threw in a whole number of my roles into a word cloud and created my own colourful hat. My own experiences of changing roles, life and leadership provide me with a wealth of expertise to support others to transit through life changes, whether it is support in exploring finding a new job or working through a transition period in life. Interested in investing in your own development? Sign up with me today.



Journal Prompt: As an exercise to explore your own roles, either in a word format of even a drawing with your different roles it helps you gain sight of where you are expending energy - you can add the different roles to a pie chart to see how much time you spending on different areas of your life.

Top Tip: Try to ensure that one of the roles relates to your individuality. Allowing you to be a human being.


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