Authors

  1. Section Editor(s): Raso, Rosanne MS, RN, NEA-BC

Article Content

The convergence of two extraordinary recent events has inspired me. First, the nursing world's enthusiasm for Kelley Johnson's Miss America talent monologue and the creation of the social media campaigns #showmeyourstethoscope and #nursesunite in response to the vitriolic comments made by those-who-will-not-be-named on national television. Then Pope Francis made his U.S. visit, compelling us to service, mercy, and inclusion. Separate issues? Yes and no. Both united us in solidarity for the right reasons at a time when it's greatly needed.

  
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We're always proud to be nurses, and with the current outpouring of support within our profession, we've been overflowing with delight. It's been a wonderful opportunity for teaching and public awareness, as well as reigniting joy for our work. Have you read any of the stories on #showmeyourstethoscope? They make you laugh, cry, and everything in-between. Stories of how we make a difference to others every day, everywhere. Stories of courage, intellect, heart, and caring. And, most important, stories of a united profession passionate about what we do.

 

There were questions raised about whether Ms. Johnson's monologue on her nursing practice was a talent. Huh? Because she didn't sing and dance? Talent is defined as a special ability that someone does well. First of all, being able to tell an impactful story that moves people to tears is clearly a talent on its own. And nursing? I couldn't believe more strongly that nursing is a special ability that must be done well. If not, you don't have nursing talent and shouldn't be doing it. That goes for staff and leaders.

 

With nursing talent being critical and in the limelight, so are our actions. Leaving all religious dogma aside, Pope Francis' principal messages touched people of all faiths and walks of life. He challenged us, as well as global leaders, to act; not just talk, or write policy, or give lip service. "What about you?" he said. Yes, what about you, what are you doing in your leadership practice to be inclusive and serve, nurture nursing talent, and provide the best work environments so that your staff members can #showustheirstethoscopes with pride? To do this, we need support in our roles, which the Pope frequently reminded the crowds by asking everyone to "pray for him." It isn't a sin to ask for help.

 

Now that we-and the entire world-are celebrating our work publicly with multimedia attention, can we stop the bickering and bullying that separates us? The literature, including this journal, continues to provide evidence of lateral violence within our profession. Also disheartening is the tone in some of the recent social media posts implying staff-management rifts. One post that struck me described decision making and distance from the bedside as being inversely proportional-the closest to the bedside being the best decisions, the farthest being the worst. Listening to these thoughts and not dismissing them is important. Let's unite instead.

 

These two media frenzies galvanized us in such a positive direction. I challenge all of you to leave imperiousness behind and stay united in service to our staff, each other, and our patients and their families. As 2015 draws to a close, let's not lose sight of unity as we shift into a brand new year.

 

NURSING.MANAGEMENT@WOLTERSKLUWER.COM

  
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