I have a burning desire to share something with fellow nurses who are interested in sharing support with each other about our careers. We are currently standing on a threshold of change. Who we are as nurses will be more and more evaluated as the nursing shortage continues. The media, public, and various institutions will be forced to face the shortage with time. What type of reflection do we want to portray to the public. Who are we.....as nurses. What type of profession do we have. What type of profession do we want. Most of all I want to talk about what we do have control over. Not what we do not have control over, but the day to day activities we do, that make or break our outlook on our careers. I want to talk with the nurses that can remember how it felt when we graduated and someone came up and ask us what we did for a living, and we pushed our chest out and with a twinkle in our eyes said "I am a nurse". Do you remember? I want that feeling, I want to keep that feeling.
I want to talk about what we can do, day to day to improve our working conditions. I am not talking about management, short staffing etc. I want to talk about accountability. (If you happen to be a manager, if the shoe fits, wear it) I want to talk about what I, yes me, the common smoe nurse can do to influence my work environment in a positive manner. I am talking from the ground up, not from the top down. US. It is not the nursing shortages fault that nurses eat their own. It is not the nursing shortages fault there are those nurses that sit on their azzzzszzz while others do the majority of the work. It is not the nursing shortages fault some nurses do not seem to know the meaning of professional ethics. It is not managements fault I forgot to put the towels under my patient to catch my prep overflow, when preparing my patient for surgery last week. I guess I am talking about getting back to nursing basics and each one of us to evaluate where we are and what we want to be. I am a dreamer I admit. If I do not dream they can not come true. But .....underneath the dreamer is a realist. Strong realist. I believe strongly nurses contribute to the nursing shortage. How do I treat the new nurse? How do I treat the students. I am not talking about babysitting these people, I am talking about accountability and professional behavior. Hold them accountable, but hold myself and my actions accountable too. I currently work in a hospital that is 120 miles away from my home. The reason.....well there are several. The number one reason however is.....that I became accountable for my own Carreer, when I found myself in an environment that I could not work in....had tried my darned best to improve with out positive results....I left. I found an environment I do respect and can function in. I was ready to quit nursing. I now love nursing again and feel very passionate about empowering others to find their love for nursing.
Are there other that feel they can make a difference from the ground up. It I can improve who I am as a nurse, does it affect the environment. If I hold myself accountable to improve my skill level, seek education, gain self respect, treat others with respect, learn how to communicate more clearly......does it have an effect on my working environment? Am I going to sit around and wait for others to change my attitude for me.
We are at the threshold of change...it is here....we will be what we make it. What do you want to be? What do you want nurses to be seen as? Can you make a difference tomorrow when you go to work?