Work-Life Balance: The Elusive Golden Ring

year-of-healthy-nurse-badge.jpgIn anticipation of Nurses Week, on May 1st the ANA launched its “Healthy Nurse, Healthy Nation Grand Challenge” initiative, designed “to help nurses improve their overall health and challenge the rest of the country to do the same.” It’s a worthwhile effort – lord knows we can all use healthier habits in our lives.

As nurses, we work long hours. It can be on our feet doing direct care, attending meetings and writing budgets and working on staffing issues, traveling on public transportation or dealing with traffic to visit patients at home, or teaching the next generation of nurses. In my case, it’s spending hours on a computer, conference calls, and frequent travel to meetings. Then, after work, we go home and take care of others and other things – household bills and repairs, managing growing families, or going to school or even to other jobs, exercising, (notice I put exercise last…) – and then fall into bed wired and exhausted. In the morning, there’s coffee or diet cola to get us up and running and we do it all over again.

question.pngAsk yourself:
  • When was the last time you went outside just to experience the sun on your face or take a leisurely walk?
  • When was the last time you did something just for yourself?
  • When was the last time you did something fun with your kids during the week?
  • When was the last time you can say that you had a good night’s sleep and woke up feeling rested?
We have the data that show that we need to pay attention to how we take care of ourselves.  Research published in AJN on health promotion practices of nurses noted that 66% of the nurses reported too many competing priorities; these nurses scored lower on spiritual growth, interpersonal relationships, and stress management.  We also know that most of us are chronically sleep-deprived -- in another article in AJN, The Potential Effects of Sleep Loss on a Nurse’s Health, the author cites studies that reveal that daily sleep time for nurses was less than six hours, and that many nurses work 15 hours or more a day, or more than 60 hours a week. And we know that fatigue translates into a higher risk for making errors.

Work-life balance is an elusive goal, at least it is for me and many people I know. It’s run, run, run most of the week; catch-up on things we didn’t get to on the weekends and squeeze in time for family and friends. We are often our own last priority when it comes to healthy practices. A health scare a few years ago caused me to rethink how I work, and while I still don’t have ideal work-life balance, I’m doing a few things that are simple and easy to work into a schedule.

Here they are in case they are helpful to you: peanut-butter-toast.png
  • Always eat some kind of breakfast, preferably protein and low carb (you’ll avoid that mid-morning slump. My go-tos: hard-boiled egg, peanut butter on a piece of whole wheat bread, a scoop of cottage cheese with some fruit).
  • Walk around the block (or two) at lunch time or, if too busy, before you head home.
  • Park further away than you have to – walking even a little is better than none. Take the dog (or invite your partner or a child) for an evening walk
  • If feeling very stressed, remove yourself (even if only to the bathroom) and take a few minutes to take a few deep breaths, get a drink of water, and clear your head.
  • Listen to music on the way home from work. I find it helps me make that transition and I arrive home more relaxed.
  • Don’t check email or social media or use a computer or tablet before bed (I know – it’s hard). Give yourself at least an hour to wind down before sleep.
  • Try to get 7 hours of sleep each night.
We make appointments and commitments with other people and consider ourselves dependable and responsible when we keep them. We need to feel the same about taking time for ourselves. Make an appointment with yourself to walk, work out, read, see a movie – anything that will give you time for yourself – put it on the calendar, and honor that commitment just as you would others. You owe it to yourself.

Shawn Kennedy, MA, RN, FAAN
Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Nursing

 
Posted: 5/6/2017 6:59:51 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 0 comments

Categories: Inspiration


Balancing Mind, Body, and Spirit: Blog Series for Nurses Week 2017

NNW-logo-300-px.jpgHappy National Nurses Week! As we approach this year’s celebration, I’d like to introduce our upcoming blog series related to the theme of balancing mind, body, and spirit. Several nurse experts will share their knowledge and advice around different aspects of self-care for nurses.
I think you’ll enjoy theses daily blog posts, starting
May 6th, 2017. We welcome any and all feedback or personal experiences that you’d like to share!

Work-Life Balance: The Elusive Golden Ring
Shawn Kennedy, MA, RN, FAAN
Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Nursing
 
Healthy Eating:  Food for Thought
Linda Laskowski-Jones, MS, APRN, ACNS-BC, CEN, FAWM, FAAN
Editor-in-Chief, Nursing2017
Vice President: Emergency & Trauma Services
Christiana Care Health System – Wilmington, Delaware
 
Hit the road…or the mat
Collette Bishop Hendler, RN, MS, CIC, CCRN (Alumnus status)
Senior Clinical Editor
Health Learning, Research & Practice
Wolters Kluwer
 
Stress:  The Elephant in Your Career
Gloria F. Donnelly, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, FCPP
Professor and Dean Emerita
College of Nursing and Health Professions
Drexel University
Editor in Chief, Holistic Nursing Practice
 
Protect yourself so you can continue to protect others
Vicki Cantor, RN, BSN, MA
Clinical Editor
Health Learning, Research & Practice
Wolters Kluwer
 
Are You Soaring Spiritually?
Kathy Schoonover-Shoffner, PhD, RN
National Director, Nurses Christian Fellowship/USA
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Christian Nursing
 
If only I had said something…
Anne Dabrow Woods, DNP, RN, CRNP, ANP-BC, AGACNP-BC, FAAN
Chief Nurse
Health Learning, Research & Practice
 
Be sure to check out all of our Nurses Week plans and take advantage of CE collections, free articles, a crossword puzzle, and more!

Also, follow us on social media -- We’ve got some special giveaways that you don’t want to miss!
 
fb.jpg   twitter.jpg   linkedin.jpg   g.jpg   youtube.jpg   Pinterest-badge-50px.png
 
Have a great week, everyone!

 
Posted: 5/4/2017 8:13:42 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Inspiration


My Nursing Care Plan: One Year Later

My-Nursing-Care-Plan.PNGIt’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since we began developing My Nursing Care Plan! It has been such a fun project for me, as well as a learning experience. Thinking about and organizing the content was challenging, even though, as a nurse myself, I know what my requirements are, what I need to do to stay up-to-date in nursing, and what I should be doing to balance work and life! The difficulty was putting it down in words and figuring out how to try and juggle it all. Creating the companion video and infographics was something new for me too – but I do love learning new things, especially when it comes to technology – so it was quite a treat to be involved in those projects. Lastly, having a conversation with Michelle Berreth RN, CRNI®, CPP, a nurse educator for the Infusion Nurses Society (INS), was quite eye-opening and inspiring, but more on that later…

So, what’s happened since my Mid-Year Update? Not too much…here’s a quick recap and a look ahead to 2017:
  • 2017-to-do-list.PNGSince I renewed my licenses in 2016, I’m not due for renewal until 2018. I’m proud to say that I’ve already logged in 12 contact hours toward my 30-hour requirement for license renewal for my RN license. I do need, however, to step up my contact hours related to women’s health to meet my 45-hour requirement for my NP license! My goal is to complete 35 contact hours related to women’s health by 12/31/17.
  • I’ve decided that before returning to school, I’d like to get back to the bedside. What I really need to think about is “what does that mean?” Do I want to work as a staff nurse or nurse practitioner? In critical care or women’s health? My heart is leaning toward acute care, but I’m also considering inpatient hospice.
  • Regardless of what clinical path I decide to take, I’d like to get certified. Something new I discovered last year were ‘-K’ or ‘knowledge’ certifications, specifically for nurses or NPs who don’t provide direct care, but do influence patient care. I will definitely be looking a little closer at this opportunity.
  • Work-life balance continues to be a struggle, just as I’m sure it is for many of you. My cough is now under control, and the focus now turns to eating and sleeping right, and exercising more. I’m due for my annual gynecologic exam and mammogram, so I’ll be scheduling those ASAP.  
Now, back to my conversation with Michelle from INS. During our discussion, we came up with some insights to consider when using My Nursing Care Plan that I think are important to share.
  • Consider asking others – colleagues, family, friends – to contribute to your own care plan.
  • Waiting for the right time to get things done isn’t realistic. When is the right time? If you wait for it, it may never come.
  • Assess if multitasking really is in your best interest. Remember that it doesn’t work for everyone and it’s okay to do one thing at a time.
  • Be present. Whether at work or in your personal life, focus on the task at hand – whether it’s a true task or a personal or professional interaction.
  • Evaluate your care plan monthly, preferably about one week before month’s end. See what’s left to do and take a glance at plans for the next month. You can even set a reminder to do this on your phone or email.
What’s your update from the past year? Any goals for 2017 you’d care to share?

More Reading & Resources

 


 
Posted: 1/18/2017 7:16:37 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: InspirationEducation & Career


Celebrate Nursing 2017

2017-NURSING-RECOGNITION-DATES.pngHappy New Year! Here’s the list of nursing recognition days, weeks, and months for 2017*.
Know of others? Please leave a comment or email clinicaleditor@nursingcenter.com.  
Thank you!
 
*Dates and links will be updated as they become available.
 

January

February

March

April

May

June

September

October

November

Let us know how you will celebrate or what plans you have to recognize your colleagues. Leave a comment or email us at clinicaleditor@nursingcenter.com.

Have a great year!
 
Posted: 1/4/2017 3:13:05 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 6 comments

Categories: Inspiration


Lifelong Learning in Nursing: Macro Trends in Nursing 2016 [Infographic]

 With the end of 2016 quickly approaching, it’s important to look ahead to the future trends happening in the nursing profession. More and more, nurses are going back to school to earn higher degrees, but why? "Life-long learning keeps nurses up-to-date on the advances in practice and can help them critically think more thoroughly because they have more evidence and information to inform their practice decisions,” explains our Chief Nurse, Anne Dabrow Woods DNP RN CRNP ANP-BC AGACNP-BC FAAN.

Whether you’re a nurse with a diploma or associate’s degree contemplating achieving your BSN, or you’re looking to pursue an advanced degree in nursing, you’re not alone. According to a 2014 survey by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), there’s been a “4.2% increase in students in entry-level baccalaureate programs (BSN) and a 10.4% increase in ‘RN-to-BSN’ programs for registered nurses looking to build on their initial education at the associate degree or diploma level. In graduate schools, student enrollment increased by 6.6% in master’s programs and by 3.2% and 26.2% in research-focused and practice-focused doctoral programs, respectively.”

With this new shift to lifelong learning in nursing, educators are adapting the way to they teach their students. “When we were [originally] taught how to educate students,” Woods says, “we were taught to sit them in a classroom and to lecture to them. That is not reality anymore today. What we’ve seen is a whole flip of the classroom so that the students or nurses…read, learn, and then come together and they discuss how to actually apply the principles that they’ve learned. That’s called the ‘flipped classroom,’ and that is what we are going to be using from now on.” 

To discover more about the flipped classroom and other changes in lifelong learning in nursing, utilize this handy infographic. 
macro trend in nursing 3: lifelong learning in nursing
 
Remember to bookmark our blog and look out for the next three trends in nursing. Our Chief Nurse also gave a presentation on the six key trends in nursing. To see Woods’ full Macro Trends in Nursing 2016 presentation, go to the Lippincott NursingCenter YouTube channel

Add this first infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:
 
<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/november-2016/lifelong-learning-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursi"><img src="http://www.nursingcenter.com/getattachment/NCBlog/November-2016/lifelong-learning-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursi/macrotrend-3-infographic_lifelong-learning-in-nursing.png.aspx?width=300&height=750></a>
  <p>Macro Trends in Nursing 2016:<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/november-2016/lifelong-learning-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursi"> Lifelong Learning in Nursing </a> By Lippincott NursingCenter</p>

 

Posted: 11/28/2016 8:34:54 AM by Cara Deming | with 1 comments

Categories: Inspiration


Nursing Management Congress (NMC) 2016

Nursing-Management-Congress-program.jpgNurse leaders + Las Vegas + a Presidential election = a busy conference week! Whew…it certainly was an eventful week as nurse leaders from around the world got together in Las Vegas for Nursing Management Congress 2016!

Preconference workshops

For two days, preconference workshops were in action. The New Manager Intensive provided fundamentals for success for those new to the role, including calculations – staffing, supplies, and equipment – to effectively and safely run a unit. In addition, new managers brushed up on relationship and communication skills, as well as handling the pressures of leadership through a period of health care reform. The Experienced Nurse Leader Intensive covered topics related to the business of health care, such as aligning with organizational goals, team development, and improving performance. Other sessions during these two days included a Certification Prep Course, Creating a World-Class Culture, and Improving the Patient Experience.

An opening session to remember

This was my first real exposure to Zubin Damania, MD, aka ZDoggMD, and I am now a big fan! His humor, talent, and passion for improving the patient experience were inspiring. He encouraged us to “reshuffle our deck” and embrace a new era of health care – Health 3.0 – re-personalized medicine with a focus on building relationships.  Here’s a brief video clip from his keynote address:
 

You can find ZDoggMD on YouTube, Facebook, and twitter. His “membership-based primary care and wellness ecosystem”, Turntable Health, is truly breaking down barriers.

So much learning

While I’ve never held a role in nursing management, the knowledge and advice from the experts at NMC are beneficial to all nurses. Here are some of the pearls and tips I learned:
“To be a successful leader, you must be flexible and move quickly in decision making.’”
Opening Session
Jeffrey Doucette, DNP, RN, FACHE, CENP, LNHA
 
“Until you change people’s minds about their work habits, they’re not going to change their work habits.”
Changing the Culture of Fatigue: A Nurse AND Patient Safety Problem
Mary Lawson Carney, DNP, RN-BC, CCRN, CNE
 
“Understanding quality across the continuum will lead to improved outcomes across the continuum.”
Reducing Readmissions Across the Care Continuum
Leonard L. Parisi, RN, MA, CPHG, FNAHQ
 
“Nurses should prepare for the future by keeping their eyes on how nursing care helps patients become and stay healthy and allows the health care system to work smoothly.”
Nursing Workforce Predictions: What’s Really Happening?
Sean Clarke, PhD, RN, FAAN
 
“It’s the simple solutions that get us where we need to be.”
Getting the Most from People Around You
Andrea Mazzoccoli, MSN, MBA, PhD, FAAN
 
“The curse of knowledge…We forget what it was like to not know what we know now.”
Talkin’ Bout My Generation: Generations in the Workplace should be Your GREATEST Strength, Not Your Biggest Headache!
Libby Spears

As next year’s planning gets underway, we invite you to look at our 2016 NMC photo album, see social media highlights, and submit an abstract!
 
See you next year!
#NMCongress

Nursing-Management-Congress-2017.jpg


 
Posted: 11/25/2016 6:47:52 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Continuing EducationLeadership Inspiration


Three more gift ideas for nurses

Last year, during the holiday season, we shared Three inspirational gifts for nurses. This year, we’ve got some more gift ideas to share with you! Explore the products below and consider which nurse you’d like to surprise this year with a special gift. You may even want to pick up one of these for yourself, or leave some hints for your family and friends!

Reflections on Nursing

Reflections-on-Nursing-300x250.jpgOffering life- and career-changing moments in nurses’ lives, the 80 true stories in Reflections on Nursing, from the American Journal of Nursing, reveal nursing at its most demanding and fulfilling. These inspiring, true stories—written by nurses in numerous care settings—show nursing as both professional and life experience, and often, as an inspired journey. Here’s a look at some of the stories that caught my eye: In the Hand of Dad: Preemie's struggle becomes one nurse's journey with a father; At Her Mercy: A nursing instructor finds herself in the hands of a challenging former student; and Nurse, Heal Thyself: Walking in the patient's shoes.



Inspired Nurses Calendar

Inspired-Nurses-calendar.jpgI picked up my copy of the Inspired Nurses Calendar earlier this month and have already put it to use! This is the gift that keeps on giving all year! Each month showcases a different story from a nurse that demonstrates our hard work and dedication. You will be reminded daily of what it means to be a nurse. By reading these stories, such as that of a NICU mom who went on to become a NICU nurse or a church missionary nurse now pursuing her DNP, you’re sure to be reminded of your own journey in nursing and your past experiences, and probably ponder, as I do, what the future holds.







Lippincott Advisor App

advisor-app-icon.jpgBased on the same content used by hospitals and brought to you by the most trusted source in nursing, the Lippincott Advisor app is an expanding collection of over 2,000 evidence-based, clinical decision support entries on diseases, treatments, signs and symptoms, and diagnostic tests that are updated quarterly. You can take all that you learned in school with you and be able to make clinical decisions at the bedside – safely and confidently.




Have a wonderful holiday season!

 
 
 
Posted: 11/21/2016 8:43:54 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Inspiration


The role of nurses, APNs, and healthcare reform in a changing political climate

This week has demonstrated that the political climate in the United States is not fixed in a stationary position but, is dynamic. Many of you will be asking yourselves what does this mean for healthcare reform, the Affordable Care Act, and for nurses and advanced practice nurses (APNs) in the United States. The bottom line is we just don't know. However, one thing we are sure of is, healthcare needs to be reformed and we must be present at the table when options are being discussed.

So, what can you do?

First, you need to understand your scope of practice and if you live in a state with restricted practice, you need to continue to lobby your congressmen and senators about the value nurses and APNs bring to patients and healthcare delivery.

Secondly, be the voice of reason. There are many things about the Affordable Care Act that have improved access to care and quality of care; we must be able to articulate why those things are important and why they need to stay from a cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness perspective.

Thirdly, educate our healthcare colleagues and healthcare consumers about who we are as a profession and why having a nurse and an APN as part of the healthcare team improves quality, patient-centered care. 

And finally, remember our history and the great strides we have made as a profession. The profession of nursing is growing and changing based on the needs of those we serve. We are all Americans and our goal is to improve patient care and outcomes regardless of who is in power.

In conclusion; step up, have a voice, be able to articulate the message, and speak from a position of knowing what you do in practice does make a difference.
  
anne-photo.PNG
Anne Dabrow Woods, DNP, RN, CRNP, ANP-BC, AGACNP-BC, FAAN
Chief Nurse
Health Learning, Research & Practice









 
Posted: 11/11/2016 9:03:04 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Inspiration


World Suicide Prevention Day

world-suicide-prevention-day.pngSeptember 10th is World Suicide Prevention Day, hosted by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP). According to IASP, “the World Health Organization estimates that over 800,000 people die by suicide each year – that’s one person every 40 seconds. Up to 25 times as many again make a suicide attempt.”

As nurses, you face these statistics every day and do your best to decrease these overwhelming numbers. Whether its screening suicide risks in teens, patients with traumatic brain injuries, elderly patients, or cancer patients, you consider the dangers and assess the situations. 

But, what about assessing yourself and your colleagues for these same risks? As health care providers, nurses face stressful days and nights, confront poor patient outcomes, and combat the negative feelings they face to push through and carry on with the work at hand. At times, you may feel you are so busy caring for others that you forget to take a moment and to consider what’s going on inside yourself. 

On NurseTogether.com, there is a sobering blog, Are Your Nursing Colleagues Suffering from Depression?, that outlines some of the signs that indicate clinical depression and suicidal thoughts in nurses. According to the blog, “A study by Welsh found that 35% of a sample of medical surgical nurses had clinical depression. Another study from HealthLeaders Media revealed that one out of five nurses is depressed.” Nurses tend to have larger workloads than other professions, which can lead to both mental and physical stress. “Nurses perform 160 tasks in an eight hour shift with no task lasting longer than 2:45 seconds….Musculo-skeletal disorders are reported in more than 60% of the nursing workforce.” In the Clinical Nurse Specialist: The Journal for Advanced Nursing Practice article, Depression in Hospital-Employed Nurses, “Direct healthcare workers, including nurses, may be more vulnerable to depression as research has shown that work stress precipitates depression in working women and men. Indeed, healthcare workers were ranked third for depressive episodes of all occupations between 2004 and 2006.” Stress on the mind and the body are factors to consider when thinking about clinical depression. 

According to Nightingalechronicles.com, another reason nurses may be more prone to depression and suicidal thoughts than other professions is that when a nurse makes a mistake, it may result in the loss of a patient. “The pressure to ‘Do no harm’ sits heavy on the shoulders of all who take that oath. But what comes after ‘if harm is done’? How do we counsel the person who may have made the mistake?”  Nightingalechronicles.com urges, “When a nurse or medical professional makes a mistake, immediate counseling and crisis intervention should be provided. Nurses should not have to bury themselves in grief, fear, and shame.” 

Other ways to support nurses in trying times are to connect, communicate, and care. IASP promotes these three actions as tools to support those who have encountered suicidal thoughts. You can connect by keeping an eye on yourself and your colleagues and by checking on how they are feeling. If a colleague or yourself is experiencing suicidal thoughts, communication is key. Nurses need to feel it is safe to discuss this topic without fear of being judged or reprimanded. Fellow nurses, policy makers, and managers then need to “care enough about suicide prevention to make it a priority.” Suicidal thoughts should not be swept under the rug or treated as something that can be dealt with later. The risks for nurses are just as real as the risks for the patients they are taking care of.
Posted: 9/8/2016 11:20:37 AM by Cara Deming | with 0 comments

Categories: Inspiration


Global Growth in Nursing: Macro Trends in Nursing 2016 [Infographic]

It’s time for the second key macro trend driving the nursing profession in 2016 – “Global Growth in Nursing.” There are over 21.6 million nurses in the world and this number continues to rise, with most nurses residing in Europe and the Western Pacific. As the profession continues to grow globally, a number of challenges are presented both for nurses around the world and for nurses at home.

Use these Global Growth in Nursing infographics to understand how this macro trend affects you and your international partners. 

                                          global-growth-in-nursing.jpg

                                          2.jpg

Bookmark our blog and be sure to watch out for the next four trends! Our Chief Nurse Anne Dabrow Woods DNP, RN, CRNP, ANP-BC, AGACNP-BC gave a presentation on the upcoming six key trends in nursing. To see Woods’ full Macro Trends in Nursing 2016 presentation, go to the Lippincott NursingCenter YouTube channel.

Add this first infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:
 
<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/july-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2"><img src="http://www.nursingcenter.com/getattachment/NCBlog/July-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2/1-(1).jpg.aspx?width=300&height=750” /></a>
  <p>Macro Trends in Nursing 2016:<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/july-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2"> Global Growth in Nursing </a> By Lippincott NursingCenter</p>

Add this second infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:
 
<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/july-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2"><img src="http://www.nursingcenter.com/getattachment/NCBlog/July-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2/2.jpg.aspx?width=300&height=750” /></a>
  <p>Macro Trends in Nursing 2016:<a href="http://www.nursingcenter.com/ncblog/july-2016/global-growth-in-nursing-macro-trends-in-nursing-2"> Global Growth in Nursing </a> By Lippincott NursingCenter</p>

 

Posted: 7/6/2016 10:11:19 AM by Cara Deming | with 1 comments

Categories: Inspiration


Displaying results 21-30 (of 100)
 |<  <  1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10  >  >| 
Comments
Blog post currently doesn't have any comments.