October 10, 2023/Nursing/Clinical Nursing

The Role of Resilience in Nursing (Podcast)

International nurse shares the circuitous route to his dream job at Cleveland Clinic and advice for others to persevere

Resilience is an important trait for nurses who witness the physical, emotional and psychological hurdles facing patients. But many must tap into their resilience long before they become caregivers as they pursue their goal to become nurses.


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Nestle Wilson, BSN, RN, began his career as a surgical nurse in his native Philippines and dreamed of working at Cleveland Clinic after reading an article about the healthcare institution’s first heart transplant.

“I said to myself since I was in surgery, ‘I want to work for the best. I want to work for that institution that provides the first in the world – the best of the best,” says Wilson.

While the path wasn’t straightforward, Wilson achieved his dream and now serves as a clinical nurse in the surgical intensive care unit at Cleveland Clinic Fairview Hospital. In the latest episode of Cleveland Clinic’s Nurse Essentials podcast, he shares his story and advice for others on remaining resilient and pursuing their passions. He discusses:

  • The importance of listening to your inner voice
  • Facing fears and setting your sights on your goals
  • How nursing students and veteran nurses can overcome obstacles
  • Keeping an open mind to new specialties and positions within the nursing field
  • How nurse leaders can support their teams and bolster resiliency


Click the podcast player above to listen to the episode now, or read on for a short edited excerpt. Check out more Nurse Essentials episodes at my.clevelandclinic.org/podcasts/nurse-essentials or wherever you get your podcasts.

Podcast excerpt

Podcast host Carol Pehotsky, DNP, RN, NEA-BC: What advice do you have for that nursing student right now who’s hit the wall, who’s working four jobs while going to school, or ran into a barrier and is thinking maybe this isn’t for me?

Wilson: Well, I would say that the biggest success in life did not happen in one day. The greatest success in life is not one straight way. There’s always those twist and turns … bumps along the way. And it’s a matter of patience. It’s a matter of always listening to that inner voice in you telling you, “This is what I want to be. This is me. I’m not doing this for anybody else, but because I want this so bad.”

Pehotsky: And it’s finding time to listen to the inner voice, right? We have phones and books and tablets and shows, and it’s so easy to do that thinking, “I’m unwinding.” But really I’m drowning my inner voice.

Wilson: Exactly. And a matter of acceptance. You get into this studying. You get into the feel of nursing. What were the reasons? Ask yourself. Why am I here? Accept the fact that along the way you will be dealing with books. You will be dealing with a lot of tears. It doesn’t stop when you graduate. It doesn’t stop when you get your RN license. It’s a continuous education.

Nursing is a continuous flow of life – not just yours, but others as well. You deal with crying people, you deal with the most painful physical, emotional, psychological situations. Ask yourself, are you ready for this?

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