Nursing

Mentorship

Ah, Mentorship! My favorite topic.  When I hear this word my ears perk up, and I get very excited. Therefore, I decided to write a series on this wonderful, important topic. Here are some of the questions that will be answered and discussed:

What is Mentorship?

Why is Mentorship Important?

How does Mentorship benefit nurses? Nursing students? 

What is the role of a Mentor?

What is the role of a Mentee? 

Stay tuned! 

Be Inspired,

Lisa Marie Walsh

Standard
Nursing

Nursing Support

I once read a book called, The Road Less Traveled, by Scott Peck and first line in the book read, “Life is hard.” I paused after that line and thought, “Wow, I’m not the only one that feels this way!” I read on feeling comforted that I was in good company!  

I mention that to say, if I wrote a book about nursing the first line in the book would be “nursing is hard”.  It is hard! It’s difficult for many reasons, but here is why I think it’s harder than it needs to be. 

1.  Nurses don’t support each often enough.  

2.  Nurses are mean (lateral violence, bullying).  

3.  Nurses are stressed to the maximum capacity. 

4.  Nurses are terrible at taking care of themselves. 

Here are my suggestions, inspired by my background and my friends:

A) Form a support group of nursing friends that you trust. 

I have a few of friends from nursing school that I don’t get together with enough, but when we do get together it is so engergizing!  I feel as if my battery has been charged 100%.  We complain, gripe, laugh, tell our heartwarming and difficult stories, dream, discuss the ‘perfect’ work environment, etc. We support each other. We get out all the ‘hardships’ of nursing and verbalize the rewards!  One of the greatest rewards of nursing for me are these compassionate, loving, beautiful friends I have developed relationships with. 

B)  Do fun, relaxing things together to decompress and recharge!

For example, a couple of my friends knit, so we have that in common.  We get together and enjoy each others company relaxing and knitting.  This past weekend we visited a beautiful botanical garden. It was so invigorating for me!   We plan to go to a famous spa together in the near future-something beautiful to look forward to! 

Why is this so important?  Why shouldn’t I do this with my family or lifelong friends instead?  Because these women are nurses!  They get it.  They know nursing is hard.  It’s not easy.  And they know survival in nursing is crucial.  

I’ve met so many jaded nurses. Mean nurses. And if you get to know them I guarantee to you they don’t do these things. They go home night after night feeling the hardship of nursing and come back to work day after day and take out all those feelings on their patients and co-workers! I do not want to be like them!  

My heart has been broken in nursing by losing patients, being understaffed and overworked, not getting support from leadership, etc. But I heal my broken heart time and time again with the support of my nursing friends.  They get it, they get me.  I can be real with them and I am not judged, I am loved and supported.  I do the same for them.  It’s an incredible bond that makes walking the path of our careers so much more rewarding.  

I love nursing, I love nurses!  We get to do this together.  I am grateful. I am inspired. 

Be Inspired,

Lisa Marie Walsh

Standard
Nursing

Why Are Nurses Mean?

I have to say, it is so disheartening when I see nurses being mean to other nurses. First of all I want to say, “STOP IT NOW!”  It starts to with you! Yes, you! If you feel guilty reading this post, you have been mean to a fellow nurse! 

Last night is a perfect example of what I mean. Here’s what happened….I went to a local chapter nursing association meeting and the guest speaker was a Chief Nursing Officer of a small local hospital. She was phenomenal by the way! But during her introduction the president asked her how long she had been a nurse. I said to myself, “why does that matter?” She’s a CNO, right! That takes hard work, dedication, and education to get there! A woman in the audience replied, out loud to all of us after she told us how long and said, “you’re a baby!” I thought to myself, “wow, how rude and disrespectful!!” That to me was such a perfect example of why I am writing this blog. 

Why do we as nurses think that we have the right to judge another nurse by the years of experience they have? Nursing is so dynamic and specialized today there is no way a nurse can be an expert in every area of nursing. And what about career paths? Who makes me the judge of whether or not someone has been a nurse ‘long enough’? And what makes me the expert on knowing whether or not you are going to be a good nurse when your a student?  Believe me, I could go on and on with the judgements I have heard from nurses! I have seen nurses almost give up on their careers because of the mean things other nurses have said to them! 

This is area that I am very passionate about. Nowadays, it is called bullying and lateral violence and that’s because it is real, and it needs to be dealt with. We had to put a name to it I order to change it.  I really don’t want to answer the question why.  What I really hope to accomplish is to empower you to stand up for yourself! Advocate for yourself. Do not allow this kind of behavior to happen to you!  There is support out there, you are not alone. If you need help with this issue, please reach out to your human resource department for guidance.  If you need additional help there are nurse legal experts out there that can help you.  Don’t be bullied, but also check yourself and make sure you are not participating the the problem. Be apart of the solution!  Bring awareness to your unit – do a project on bullying in your hospital to help bring awareness and exposure to this important issue. It is NOT going to go away unless we do something about it!

Be Inspired,

Lisa Marie Walsh

Standard
Nursing

New Year, New Goals

Happy New Year! Most people are thinking and talking about New Year’s resolutions.  If you’re tired of making New Year’s resolutions and not keeping them, I suggest setting goals for the new year.  

What is different about goals? According to WordBook, a resolution is “a decision to do something or to behave in a certain manner” which to me is different from a goal.  You may not agree but here’s my thinking…….

If I am making a resolution I usually am trying to change a behavior. It’s not uncommon to hear people making resolutions to lose weight to get in better shape to go back to school, etc. because they want to change a behavior. However, when making goals it’s important to remember that a goal is a plan and a plan involves action. 

When I set my goal to go to nursing school I didn’t change my behavior, instead I devised a plan of action to get me there.  Once I got into nursing school I had completed my goal. It was a successful accomplishment towards my future. 

 Another goal that I was able to accomplish was to go back to grad school. I had a goal of going back to grad school within five years of completing nursing school. My plan of action began with looking at many graduate programs. I realized my true goal was to be able to teach nursing students, and in order to do that I had to have my Masters degree. My first decision  was to decide on what type of masters degree I wanted  that would enable me to better teach students. With that in mind, I decided on a masters in the specialty of family nurse practitioner so that I would acquire advanced skills to teach nursing students. Once I made that decision I chose the school to help me best accomplish that goal.

 That goal took time, it didn’t happen in a year! The second year of grad school my goal was the same – to complete my masters program. Therefore, the second year I did not make a new goal, I just continued with that goal until it was finished. So a new year doesn’t necessarily mean a new goal. A new year may mean continue to strive towards your goal. 

My ultimate goal was to teach nursing students and that is still my  goal! I love education and I am passionate about nursing students. Teaching will always be a goal of mine, I’m not sure that one will ever end. 

I am currently teaching nursing students for a local university in the clinical setting and I absolutely love it! My goal is to continue to teach nursing students in the academic setting or clinical setting for the rest of my career. I hope to keep inspiring and empowering nursing students to grow into their career and successes through teaching, mentoring, and blogging.  A goal I have set for this year is to continue to write and get more exposure for this blog so that I may touch the lives of nursing students all over the globe. 

What goals have you set? What goals are you working towards this year? If you don’t have a goal set I encourage you to set a goal whether it’s for your career or for yourself personally. Goals help us grow, mature, and develop into better human beings. 

Be Inspired,

Lisa Marie Walsh

Standard