Caring, the caring moment, patient engagement and the nurse – patient relationship all involve a connection.
And that connection lives in you, the nurse.
As a nurse, it is understood that you are there to create caring connections with patients in a mutual and authentic manner.
Chances are this is what drew you to nursing. This is why you are a nurse.
These connections are important to you, they:
- Reenergize your practice
- Validate your mission
- Give meaning to your work
- Feed your soul
And most importantly, for the benefit of all, they sustain your career.
The curious question is, Did you enter nursing with this capacity for human connection? Did it come with you?
The critical questions are:
- How do you currently cultivate this capacity in your nursing practice?
- Do you know how?
- What do you know about the origins of these connections?
- Do you know how to own them, create them ‘on demand’?
What all nurses know about these connections is that they are impacted by:
- Distractions and competing demands
- Fear, vulnerability, waning confidence
- Confusion, discouragement, anger, despair
What we also know about these connections is that they:
- Originate within the nurse
- Spark from a connection between the nurse and other
- Are nurtured by the nurse’s internal resources
- Can only be sustained by the nurse
This is why nurses’ internal mastery of the healthcare system and all its challenges is so critical for patients, the system at large and nurses themselves.
It’s the bedside nurses and the frontline nurse leaders who are in the eye of the healthcare storm with patients and their loved ones.
It is here that nurses bring calm within the healthcare storm for the patient, where nurses and patients connect/engage and where caring and healing happen.
Each nurse finds it within her/himself to create these events and connections with patients.
This is an inner process within each nurse. The origins are specific to each nurse and can only be sustained by each nurse.
This inner process cannot be enacted by policy, protocols or job descriptions. Nor can it be effectively taught in school or at work.
The development and sustainment of this inner process can be achieved only by the nurse; a nurse who is motivated to nurture what exists within. A nurse who wants to feel less overwhelmed, vulnerable and discouraged, and as a result, will grow capacity to connect.
Do you know how?