Do The Pressures of Self-Care Guilt You?

What Self-Care Is –

Self-care are those things you do for yourself to feel better and be healthier.

The question is,  … Are you guilted by self-care?

  • The need for it
  • The pressures of doing it
  • The obstacles of doing it
  • The guilt for not doing it

If so, You Are Not Alone

Yet …. Here are 2 realities we cannot escape… and both of them require self-care:

  • Caring starts with self
  • Who we are is how we lead

My recent blogs have focused on deeper, ‘high impact’ self-care

  • Journaling – best practices in growing self-awareness and life skills
  • The importance of self – no way around it ⇒ Caring starts with self
  • How to expand our self-awareness beyond navel gazing

Nurse Leaders’ Self-Care Practices

Here we are at a time where the focus is shifting towards wellness within our society ⇒

Leading to nurses needing to cultivate their authenticity and capacity to connect ⇒

And yet nurse leaders lag behind in capitalizing on the benefits of self-care.

Nurse Leader Wellness Study by Nursing Management – February 2018, The State of Nurse Leader Wellness. Findings:

50% of the nurse leaders had work-life balance

 63% of these nurse leaders reported that their organizations provided wellness programs. And yet, the statements from the respondents indicate an inability or unwillingness to utilize the programs.

The self-care practices most used by the nurse leaders:

  • Scheduled time off/vacation
  • Making time to be with family and friends
  • Taking time for self-care
  • Adequate sleep/rest
  • Hobbies
  • Exercise

The Bottom Line

The 75-year long Harvard study (Grant & Glueck Study- study of Adult Development) found that Love was the most important variable in the 700 men studied from 1972- 2004.

Their ability to love and connect with others is what drove their happiness and fulfillment in life and good health.

“According to George Vaillant, the Harvard psychiatrist who directed the study, there are two foundational elements to happiness and fulfillment:

                  “One is love.   The other is finding a way of coping with life that does not push love away.”

The give and take of finding and accepting love/authentic connections in our lives vs. not pushing it away is dependent on how we as individuals cope with life’s complexities, challenges and threats.

How this relates to nurses and nurse leaders is at the core of our work.  Our work can’t help but penetrate our armor that naturally tries to protect our personal feelings and emotions.

We know that this work and other personal variables that life bring leave nurses exposed and susceptible to becoming wounded, characterized by caring fatigue and burn-out.

This is where Self-Care enters

Valliant says, “If you’re struggling, get a good therapist,  join a support group,  invest in a workshop, get a grief counselor.

Take personal growth seriously so you are available for connection.”

This is the secret to a successful career, good health, and love and happiness in your life.

image courtesy of
Curtin M. This 75-Year Harvard Study found the 1 secret to leading a fulfilling life. Accessed March 2017.Study –

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