Tag Archives: healing

Nurse Boss- a blog series dedicated to nurses

Welcome to the 20th installment of Nurse Boss. A blog series dedicated to nurses.

I was guided to create this series after a spark of creativity within my soul felt that it would help thousands of nurses.

My hope is that these interviews will ignite a spark in you or stir your inner landscape in a way that propels you to dream big and go after what it is that you desire in life and career.

A Nurse Boss is a nurse who has created a lifestyle that aligns their passion with their natural gifts and energy style in a way that helps others while also honoring their own body, mind, and soul. A Nurse boss walks their talk and they are open to receive the abundance that is theirs.

A Nurse Boss is more than a role or job he/she has, it’s a certain energy, a vibe, a mindset.  A Nurse Boss has an uplifting energy and loves helping others, but not to the detriment of his/her own well-being.

Today’s Nurse boss makes me proud to be a nurse and yoga teacher. Meet Susan Turnage, registered nurse and yoga teacher extraordinaire. What Susan is doing for our world through yoga is profound. Our paths to the amazing Annette Tersigni, CEO & Founder at Yoga Nurse Medical Yoga Therapy and Stress Relief happened exactly the same way, read about it below.

Susan Turnage, RN, RYT

Susan Turnage, RN, RYT

1. What are you doing now?
Presenter of YogaNursing live trainings and lunch and learn programs at hospitals and at VCU School of Nursing, therapeutic Yoga teacher in community centers- 9 classes per week, working as an art conservation technician. I am treasurer of the newly formed Breathing Space Inc, a non-profit thats mission is to create a ripple effect of wellness in the Greater Williamsburg, VA area by providing wellness and meditation programs to underserved populations. I am a Virginia Institute of Marine Science volunteer in their Virginia Saltwater Game Fish Tagging Program.

2. Did you always have the desire to do what you are doing now or did someone or something create a spark in you that made you realize this was your calling?
At age 3 I knew I would be a nurse. Nursing has been both my vocation and avocation for over 4 decades. I have experience in hospital Nursing, Acute care, rehab, pediatric head injury, corrections, home health and call center telephonic nurse coach.

As western medicine moved toward focusing on lowering costs, eliminating positions, increasing patient loads and decreasing job security, I began searching for something new.

I began yoga teacher training and thought that yoga and nursing were quite complimentary. It was a wellness program for Every Body! It addressed the mind and body. From my own yoga practice I felt yoga’s healing.
I googled nurse + yoga and found Annette Tersigni! I took the online training. I went to North Carolina and took the live training. So overjoyed at finding a continuing education program that focused on the Wellness of the Nurse first, I trained to become a Certified YogaNurse® so I could become a Nurse for Nurses.

3. Why is nursing a great launchpad for nurses who want to create their own lifestyle doing what they love?
We carry experience wherever we go from Nursing. A nurse knows science, math, psychology, acting, conflict management, world religions, comedy, time management etc. Nurses are fearless. We never know what comes next, it’s great training for the business world. We ask questions. We have a malignant curiosity to learn new things. We are problem solvers and used to working independently.

4. What is the ultimate characteristic of a nurse boss?

Don’t give up.

5. What was the biggest obstacle you’ve faced to get to where you are now? How were you able to overcome it?

Income. To follow my passion to bring yoga to Nurses and my community it first cost me money for training. My gracious husband saw my passion and encouraged me to pursue it. We lived simpler and spent with care.

6. What does your current job allow you to do that traditional nursing did not?

Set my own standard of care and time line. I teach Nurses self care- I feel that I served as an RN for decades just so I would have the chops to teach Nurses self care. I know the stress, bullshit, exhaustion, elation, joys and complexities of being a Nurse. I have the hands of a healer, I teach Nurses how to recognize their own healing hands, heal themselves first, then use the Sacred Breath, Sacred Movement and Sacred Rest for their patients.
In my community yoga classes I teach yoga to those 30 and over. We don’t wear fancy yoga clothes. We practice in community centers. I teach anatomy, body systems, ways to think about their body and mind. We do guided meditation. Sometimes we laugh and talk a bit. Sometimes students fall asleep.

Yoga is what you need in the moment.

It’s a connection where I can be a nurse without a deadline or supervisor telling me to get to the next case.

7. For nurses who feel stuck in their careers what words of wisdom do you have to help inspire them to break out of their status quo?

That is not so easy to answer. For years I provided an income to support my family. Options to take additional expensive training to pursue a more independent track was just not there. First I had to heal myself. Rework my personal journey. Then the transition took place. First I had to admit I needed help. Al-anon gave me that, yoga gave me that. Then I faced very difficult decisions. All that time I worked in a profession that offered me an income and latitude to take one step at a time. I began to see a dream. I believed I could. It came and continues to unfold.

8. What resources can you share for nurses wanting to explore creating their own gig that actually pays them?

There are new resources emerging that are appealing to those of us coming from the world of science and seeking a broader approach to health. Exploring options like YogaNursing and the American Holistic Nurses Association who can enlighten you with many offerings. When I saw YogaNursing- I felt a burst of excitement and relief, I knew it was for me.

Now for fun:
9. What book or publication is currently on your nightstand?
“Mudra: The Sacred Secret” Indu Arora

“Principles and Practice of Yoga in Healthcare” editors McCall, Telles et al.

“61 Hours”, Lee Child

10. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?
Philadelphia soft pretzel, purchased from a street table with traffic whizzzing by, from a guy wiping his nose on his arm just before handing you the bag of 4 pretzels.

11. How can we get in touch with you?

Website: http://www.nursesusanyoga.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NurseSusanYoga/?fref=ts

[email protected]

757-784-3277

Susan Turnage RN, CYN, RYT500

Nurse Boss-a blog series for nurses

Welcome to the 3rd installment of Nurse Boss. A blog series dedicated to nurses.

I was guided to create this series after a spark of creativity within my soul felt that it would help thousands of nurses.

My hope is that these interviews will ignite a spark in you or stir your inner landscape in a way that propels you to dream big and go after what it is that you desire in life and career.

A Nurse Boss is a nurse who has created a lifestyle that aligns their passion with their natural gifts and energy style in a way that helps others while also honoring their own body, mind, and soul. A nurse boss walks their talk and they are open to receive the abundance that is theirs.

I would like to introduce Anne Taylor. She is a nurse that I had the pleasure of connecting with on LinkedIN. It’s amazing how your vibe really does attract your tribe! I absolutely love her story and how she turned pain and suffering into healing for herself, her family, and now others. The ultimate example of a Nurse Boss!   

annetaylor

1. What are you doing now?

I am the CEO of Scandic Health llc. We stream MusiCure-music as medicine to hospitals, clinic and the likes. At this moment I am in conversations with nurses and hospital administrators to peak their interest to MusiCure. Coming to the market with something completely new has its challenges.

2. Did you always have the desire to do what you are doing now or did someone or something create a spark in you that made you realize this was your calling?

I went to nursing school in Copenhagen Denmark, and really enjoyed being a nurse. I married my American husband in 1999 and moved to Miami Beach and started my US- nursing career. It was not so easy as it sounds, I worked as an assistant to the RN while I was studying for the NCLEX. I spoke English but not nursing English, it was a very difficult year but looking back it was a year where I learned a lot personally and professionally.

My spark to start my own company comes from a very painful time in my life when my daughter was extremely ill with anxiety and depression. She was 9 years old and so very ill that she needed hospitalization, our whole family was in a state of shock and pain. My mother came from Denmark to help out and she brought us our first MusiCure cd, she had bought it at the pharmacy as an over the counter medication.

MusiCure quickly became a daily part of our routine, it felt like my heart rate slowed down and my breathing was more calm. It was like a release deep within my soul, I saw my daughter sleep better and be able to relax and slowly enjoy life again. My daughter slowly got better and we as a family got stronger. At my very lowest I remember thinking I either do not tell anybody because mental illness has such a stigma or I stand up and share our story and hopefully inspire others. We lost friends and gained some new ones and I also started to use MusiCure in my practice as a nurse.

It was a slow process but after 2 years of having MusiCure heal us I knew I had to create some kind of platform to share. Scandic Health is named after my Scandinavian roots and health is to honor my daughter’s recovery.

3. Why is nursing a great launchpad for nurses who want to create their own lifestyle doing what they love?

Before I started nursing school I was told nursing is like a ladder, nursing has so many steps and can take you in so many directions. I do not know of any other profession where you can travel the world working, change working hours depending on your families’ needs and have such a huge impact on other people.

4. What is the ultimate characteristic of a nurse boss?

Compassion and ability to keep the nursing team engaged, we are stronger together and nurses need to have each other’s back every shift.

5. What was the biggest obstacle you’ve faced to get to where you are now? How were you able to overcome it.

I have had so many obstacles but they are also who I am today. A Norwegian nurse theorist Kari Martinsen talks about nurses as having “backpacks of knowledge” they carry with them through life and collects more on their way. Mine consists of my parents divorce, leaving my roots and moving to the US and my daughter’s illness.

Obstacles can also be life lessons even though they surely do not feel like it when you are in the eye of the storm. My biggest obstacle is by far my daughter’s fight back to a happy life and our family learning a new way of living by limiting stress and enjoying the moment.

I do not know if I overcame this obstacle, I more rode through it and came out wiser on the other end.

Time, give your self time.

6. What does your current  job allow you to do that traditional nursing did not?

I want to write a 30 min lunch break and bathroom breaks ☺

But on a serious note, it’s really about that I can now concentrate about my passion and share my story. As much as it scares me to do public speaking, I also feel empowered afterwards. I count my blessings each holiday I am off and able to spend with my family.

7. For nurses who feel stuck in their careers what words of wisdom do you have to help inspire them to break out of their status quo.

A nurse can only care for patients if she/he takes care of themselves first. I had to learn this the hard way. Please listen to your body when it tries to talk to you. If you have a desire to break out, take small steps and follow your deep nurse intuition cause it’s there, trust me.

8. What resources can you share with nurses wanting to explore creating their own gig that actually pays them?

Passion and authenticity is real and raw, other people will listen since its not selling, it’s sharing your story. Start small, one thought will lead to the next. It’s all a process. I talked out loud for many months to friends and family, their advice and encouragement got me to the point of a business plan. Rome was not built in one day and this is a process and each step teaches you something. LinkedIN has been a huge resource for me, I have gotten amazing contacts, like you ☺ 

Now for fun:

9. What book or publication is currently on your nightstand?

The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende and the Mindful magazine.

10. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?

Avocado

11. How can we get in touch with you

My website is www.scandichealth.com and my email is [email protected]

Lost your inner Superhero?

Needing to reclaim your inner Superhero?

I believe all nurses are superheroes.

As I nurse, my superpower is healing. I have this super power of helping others heal themselves with what they’ve already got. All you ever need is what you already have.

I am biased because I am a nurse. But you don’t have to be a nurse to claim your own superpowers or superhero status.

If you need to up your mojo, or get in touch with your superhero, check out my free guide, “7 Secrets to Reclaim your Inner Superhero“:

Reclaim Your Superhero Here

Please share your super power here?

Until then, Be Super

Lisbeth

The Art of Nursing. Nursing and Art. Science and Healing.

The Art of Nursing. Nursing and Art. Science and Healing.

When asked by Elizabeth Scala, Registered Nurse, author, speaker, and host of The Art of Nursing 2.0 online event for nurses how I view the art of nursing in my professional practice, this is how I responded.

I have learned so much in my 17 years of practicing nursing. My perspective has shifted from one of “fixing” people to “guiding” them and I have transformed myself along the journey.

I felt so broken and unworthy for many years and that underlying current affected every aspect of my life, even my career. The result was saying NO to more opportunities than I can count or recall.

I now view myself as a healer.

I live my life as a creator and now believe that it is far better for me and the world to part with the idea that I have to struggle and not own my power and unique gifts with the world.

The art of nursing to me, is showing up as you are in your own creative way to guide others back to themselves. The art of nursing is reminding others that they too already possess exactly what they need to thrive in whatever way that looks or works for them.

I work part time as a telephonic case manager for an insurance company as I organically build my business, Whole Life Health LLC empowering nurses one heart at a time.

If you are a nurse who knows you have more than “status quo” to share with the world, I have a gift for you.

I have created a special Facebook group called, “I AM READY” and it is dedicated to the nurses who are done with struggle and are ready to create a life that believes abundance and opportunity are your birthright. If you are READY let me know and I will gladly add you to our community of nurses who have started a movement to elevate and up the vibration and what is possible for nurses in our lifetime.

How do you define the art of nursing?

For more on Elizabeth’s event, the Art of Nursing 2.0, click here. Honoring Nurses

Until next time, own your art and your creative gifts. You were anointed with them for a reason.

xo,

Lisbeth

Power Fuel for Nurses

Power Fuel for Nurses

Nurses need nutrition that is quick, affordable, portable, and delicious. One item that fits the bill every time is a green smoothie.

Here are my tips on crafting the healthiest smoothies with two of my favorite recipes.

Tips on building your perfect green smoothie

Let’s start with the good news, there is no wrong way to build a perfect green smoothie! The point of creating green smoothies is two-fold: to have a great time experimenting with food and to feed your body with amazing, healing foods.

If you consume a green smoothie for breakfast even several days a week, you will crave less sweets during the day, you will start to receive the healing benefits by the alkalinizing effects of the greens in your body and blood, & your taste buds will begin to change. In other words, you will naturally crowd out the unhealthy foods over time and start to prefer healthier varieties. 

The Standard American Diet full of fat, salt, and sugar is very acidic and promotes disease.  A diet full of greens on the other hand, is more alkaline, which helps reduce inflammation and is very healing.

Prep: You always want to buy fresh and organic foods for your smoothies if you can. Check out www.EWG.org (Environmental Working Group). If you have not heard of this group, they are a watchdog for consumers. They cover everything from beauty and skin products to food. Here you will find the “dirty dozen” and “fresh fifteen”. These are the top twelve and fifteen foods that you should always buy organic to avoid ingesting pesticides and chemicals that are unsafe. I always recommend buying your food locally, when possible.

A lot of stores sell organic fruit in bulk in the freezer section of the store. When ingesting green smoothies, it is best to rotate your greens. For example, have spinach for a week and then switch it up the following week with something different, like kale. I buy my greens in bulk and divide them up into gallon size ziplock bags and store in the freezer. If you want to save even more time, plan a few days worth of smoothies and place all of the ingredients in a ziplock and store it in the freezer until you are ready to make it. Toss it in the blender and voila you are done.

Another tip, I never throw brown bananas away. I stick them in the freezer and pop them in the microwave for 45 seconds to get them soft enough to cut the peel and pop them in the smoothie. Supposedly, brown spots on a banana represent, tumor necrosis factor (TNF) which is supposed to be a great cancer fighting ingredient!! I like my smoothies to be cold.

I use ice and/or use all fruit that is frozen to make it colder. To make smoothies creamy, use Almond Milk instead of water and include bananas and nuts or peanut butter. Smoothies are meant to be consumed when fresh, but may be stored for several hours in the fridge if necessary.

For some reason, I prefer to drink smoothies with a straw. I think it’s just more fun!

Setting up for success: Start out in the beginning with mild greens, such as spinach until you get used to the flavor and texture. Kale has more of a bitter taste and can take warming up to. Use fruit to sweeten your smoothie. As you get used to the flavor start adding more greens and less fruit! 

Equipment: Any blender will do. The Magic Bullet is a great device that you can get for $100 at Target that is quick and easy for traveling and storing smoothies. I started with a Kitchen Aid blender, then moved on to the Magic Bullet, and now I have a Vitamix. The Vitamix is pretty expensive, but quite powerful and quick for building smoothies.

Juice vs. Smoothies: What’s the difference between juicing and green smoothies? Juicing is done with a juicer machine that removes the pulp (fiber) from the fruits and vegetables leaving you with only juice. Smoothies contain both the fiber and juice so there is no waste and you get the benefit of both juice and fiber. Juicing is commonly used for detoxing. Always check with your health care provider before trying a detox. I do like juice once in a while, but I don’t like throwing away food, so if I am going to juice, I try and save the pulp for adding to soups.

Washing your ingredients: Take a large bowl of cold water and let your ingredients soak for a few minutes to remove the residue and dirt.

Things to consider when building your smoothie. Choose any one item from each category below and simply let your creativity guide you. Over time, you will discover what combinations you love. The sky is the limit here to what you can create. Get your kids involved. They love to create in the kitchen. 

Always start with a liquid base and build up from there.

Base Water, Almond Milk, Rice Milk, Coconut Milk, Coconut Water

Greens Spinach, Romaine, Red Chard, Rainbow Chard, Watercress, Kale, Red Kale, Dino Kale, Baby Kale, Dandelion Greens, Greens from Beets, Cilantro, Parsley

Fruit Peeled apples (green have the lowest sugar content), Bananas, Berries (straw/blue/black/raspberries), Pineapple, Watermelon, Cherries, Grapes, Fig

Veggies Beets, Carrots, Broccoli, Cucumbers, Celery

Protein/Fat Nuts (Walnuts, Almonds, Cashews) always use raw nuts and soak them for at least 4 hours prior to putting them in your blender. This helps your body absorb more of the nutrients, but not mandatory if you don’t have time.  Peanut Butter (natural variety with less processed ingredients and lower sugar content). Almond Butter, Coconut Oil (organic), Avocado, Dairy options: (Yogurt, Cottage Cheese, Kefir), Protein powder is ok, but fresh whole food is better if you have it!


Power options Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, Maca Powder, Goji Berries, Organic Vanilla Extract, Coconut Flakes, Fresh Ginger Root, Organic Cacao (code for chocolate), Cinnamon, Tahini, Lemon, Lime

To get started, try my two favorite recipes here. Fill the blender with the following ingredients and mix away. Add ice for a cold smoothie.

Pineapple Delight:
1 cup Water
1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds
1 Tablespoon Maca Powder
1/2 cup Frozen Pineapple
1 cup Spinach or Baby Kale
1/2 Peeled Apple
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil
1 Tablespoon Coconut Flakes
Protein Power:
1 cup Almond Milk
1 frozen Banana
1 Tablespoon Peanut Butter
1 Cup Baby Kale
1/2 Cup Frozen Strawberries
1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds
1 Tablespoon Maca Powder

All rights reserved. Property of Whole Life Health LLC

I hope this has inspired you to whip out the old blender and have some FUN.

Please share your experience with green smoothies. Love them? Hate them? What are your favorite “go to” smoothies?

Peace,

Lisbeth

Three Crucial Lessons I Learned About Being A Healer, That Nursing School Could Not Teach Me

I feel so blessed by my nursing career and what it has allowed me to become (A Healed Healer). I offer up this post in gratitude on this day of Thanksgiving. I hope that you find some treasure in it that may serve your life in a positive way.

Nursing school is set-up to prepare nurses to take care of and guide patients. Nursing school gives nurses the skills and experiences in simulated and live environments to become master observers and assessors. Teaching students to be able to pick up on the obvious and subtle queues in hopes to prevent or stop a patient’s condition from going from bad to worse. This is no small task.

My introduction to the medical world first came from my father who was a physician and my mom who was a nurse. My parents divorced and eventually both remarried. Between them, were three physicians and a nurse. I got to see so much about health care.

I did not set out to become a nurse but decided after graduating with a bachelor’s of science degree in exercise science that becoming a nurse would provide me with both opportunity and flexibility which were important to me, because someday I wanted to have a family.

Coming from a lineage of health care practitioners, I thought I would breeze through nursing school having had so much exposure to the medical world as well as my degree in exercise science. It turns out, my assumptions were way off base.

Nursing school was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I ate, drank, and slept nursing school. My entire focus was learning as much as possible so I could graduate and start practicing. The irony is, nursing school is essentially a big stress fest. I suppose in a way, it is just preparing nurses for the stressors of the job.

I wish there was a way to make nursing school less stressful. I don’t believe people learn as much when they are stressed out. I can remember many stressful times during my time in nursing school, that involved both stress from the classroom wondering if I would ever be able to remember everything and the fear of harming a patient during clinicals.

One such event sticks in my mind like it was yesterday, it involved skills lab and learning to give intramuscular injections.

My lab partner was absolutely petrified of giving shots. She demonstrated beautifully for me, how not to give an injection. As I sat waiting for her to inject my thigh with sterile saline, it was obvious she was terrified.  The fear was palpable in her facial expression and guarded body posture. This made me feel very anxious. She would reach toward my thigh, acting as if she was going to give me the injection, and would then freakout and pull back. I remember saying to her, “really, you have to just do it” and all the while I was thinking, you can not do this to a real person, because they would run away from you! That was a great lesson for me about the importance of body language and the importance of exuding confidence in front of your patients, even if you are frightened to death. In reflection, this is actually funny to me now, but at the time it was stressful for both of us.

I feel like I received a wonderful nursing education and after practicing nursing for seventeen years, I can say with confidence that there are three crucial lessons that nursing school did not teach me that would have been really nice to know.

Effective Communication Is the Cornerstone of Great Care

Effective communication is the cornerstone of good care. As patient advocates, a nurse absolutely must know how to communicate effectively and with ease. As they say, communication is everything. Effective communication involves both the written and spoken word and can mean the difference between life and death. A nurse must be able to communicate effectively with every person on the care team; but most importantly, their patients.

The Importance of Good Self-Care and Setting Boundaries

Nurses must be aware of the importance of setting and practicing firm boundaries and the necessity of practicing routine self-care. When a nurse has firm boundaries they are protecting their own health and not allowing external circumstances or people change how they care for themselves. Firm boundaries are also a crucial part of healthy communication with others. Nurses with firm boundaries demonstrate self-respect and when treated disrespectfully will respectfully communicate to anyone who is stepping over that boundary that they are doing so and will not engage with them when they are treating you in such a way. When nurses have weak boundaries it makes everything harder, especially making self-care a priority. Nurses are by nature, givers and sometimes prefer to give than receive. To navigate a career in nursing, that ensures the health and wellness of mind, body, and spirit, you must be willing to receive care for yourself and have firm boundaries.

A Nurse’s Job is Not to Fix People

As a nurse, it is not your job to “fix” people. Rather, the nurse’s role is to hold the space for patients to heal by reminding them that they have the capacity to heal and that nurses can help guide them. Caring for patients is stressful as it is and carrying the burden that it is the nurse’s job to fix patients sets nurses up for disappointment and feelings of failure. Nurses are guides and role models. The more nurses can model healthful living, the better it is for all.

Life is about the journey, not the destination. I have been a registered nurse for seventeen years and I have just come to the realization that I am far more than a nurse, I am a healer. I believe that a healer is a practitioner who poetically weaves evidence based science and compassionate care into the journey of a person’s life without so much as a second thought. I believe a healer also models a lifestyle that is holistic in nature and understands the interconnectedness of emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical wellbeing. Living in such a way acts as a mirror for what others can do to optimize their own vitality.

This revelation or stroke of insight came from life experience and my own healing journey. I feel my journey may have been easier had I started out knowing these three lessons, but I also believe that we learn the lesson we need when we are ready. Either way, I feel blessed.

I wish only the best for you on your life journey. Remember that you already possess exactly what you need to thrive, sometimes you just need a gentle reminder.

What has your nursing school experience been like? What lesson has life taught you that school could not?

Peace and abundance,

Lisbeth

 

Nursing is at a tipping point

Nursing is at a tipping point, what does your #stethoscope say about your nursing path?

What Kelly Johnson, RN and #showmeyourstethoscope revealed to me about nursing

My name is Lisbeth Overton and I am proud to be a registered nurse. I have had the privilege of practicing for seventeen years. My passion has been all things cardiac; especially my time in the electrophysiology lab helping patients suffering from irregular heart rhythms. Giving these patients their quality of life back was beyond rewarding.

Currently I work as a nurse case manager for an insurance company educating customers on how to prevent and/or live well with chronic conditions. I love this role because instead of “fixing” people, I am guiding them to see the correlation between their actions and the outcomes. It is rewarding to empower people to take accountability for their own health and to feel their joy knowing that they can create health and wellness in their own lives, one choice at at time.

I also have a private coaching practice teaching nurses how to leverage their unique gifts, creating the lifestyle of their dreams, where health and career thrive.

It seems like it was so long ago now, but the opportunity with registered nurse, Kelly Johnson had such an impact on me. She was Miss Colorado in the Miss America pageant and for her “talent” she wore the scrubs that she wears at work in her nursing job along with a stethoscope around her neck and shared how moving it was to care for a special patient of hers who was living with Alzheimer’s disease. The next day, she was ridiculed on The View for her “talent” and was reported to have read her patient’s emails for part of her monologue.

I have such gratitude for Kelly Johnson and the courage she displayed in the Miss America pageant. I also have gratitude toward the hosts of The View. If it weren’t for their comments, the depth and breadth of this opportunity would never have reached the scope that it did, nor had the impact. Multiple companies pulled their ads that played during The View’s time slot in support of nurses. Kelly’s courage and the lack of understanding of the hosts on The View created a perfect opportunity, or what my mom always refers to as a “teachable moment”.

I believe that the hosts’ comments came from a lack of understanding of what it is that nurses actually do. While it was disheartening and maddening as a nurse to hear such remarks, I believe it was the best thing to happen to nursing in the last ten years. It is an opportunity for nurses to reflect on how we show up in our profession and to join together to educate the world on what it is that we do and how crucial our profession is now and especially as the landscape of health, wellness, and disease changes.

This opportunity was an invitation to reflect on the nursing profession. If nursing is the most trusted profession, how could we be so disrespected? So, I engaged in the #showmeyourstethoscope and #nursesunited campaigns on Facebook. Just to give you some perspective, these groups had well over 800,000 members. I read countless posts by nurses who shared poignant stories of how they left no stone unturned to try and save a patient or bent over backwards to ensure that connections with family members occurred before a patient took their last breath. There were also thousands of posts by healthcare consumers, specifically moms and dads who had nothing but kindness and gratitude to the droves of nurses who cared for their sweet children and never would have made it without the nurses. I also read stories by men and women and their struggle to get to and through nursing school because that had always been their dream.

I also noticed a theme that weaved its way through so many of the stories. This was the mention of all of the things that did not get cared for by the nurses themselves, commonly seen on social media with the hashtag #nurseproblems. This ranged anywhere from not using the bathroom for ten+ hours to working over twelve+ hours straight, not getting enough sleep, not eating on their breaks because they were understaffed, and not feeling safe at work.

Here is the gift and the curse of being a nurse. Nurses are extremely giving, compassionate, strong-willed, creative, artistic, intelligent, and noble. As such, there tends to be more giving than taking or receiving. There is simply no way to continue to offer this to thousands of patients without first recognizing your own need to heal and recover.

One could argue that there are a gazillion reasons that nursing is where it is today that don’t involve the nurse. But at the end of the day, I would argue that no one can make you feel a certain way and when your body, mind, and soul are completely tapped what good is it, if this is all someone else’s fault?

It is time to start taking accountability for our health and careers. You each have the right of choice. If you are a nurse and are struggling with your health, your job, or your relationships, I would ask yourself, what role am I playing in this? Why is it that I believe I deserve to be treated this way? What can I do to improve this? Often it is when we feel that we have no choice that we give up. Just remember, we each have choice. We each deserve to be treated with respect. Now, I challenge you to reflect on your day to day choices. Are they helping you heal or harming you? Why are you making these choices? Are you asking for help? What could you do differently? Are you part of the problem or part of the solution?

I struggled with health issues and feeling disempowered for quite some time. I had no idea how much power my negative thoughts had on my health and the types of circumstances that kept showing up for me. I have discovered that standing up and standing out is the best thing that has ever happened to me. I have learned how to leverage my own thoughts and energy to my advantage. I am healthier, happier, and more empowered than I have ever been. I am now speaking my truth. My mission is to give back to the nursing profession by helping other nurses do the same. Nurses are the backbone, the glue of care. We have such potential and are at a crossroads right now in the landscape of health care. We can either rise up and own our worth and provide amazing education and care for our world, or we can curl up, stay silent, and stay disempowered. I have experienced both and I certainly prefer thriving.

It is time that nurses stand up, band together and start acting like they matter. To me, it looks something like this.

  • Nurses have a very good understanding of their non-negotiables.
  • Nurses have strong boundaries.
  • Nurses have the opportunity to stay well at the workplace.
  • Nurses have flexibility in their schedules.
  • Nurses are staffed for patient safety.
  • Nurses are board members in health care organizations.
  • Nurses create the life they desire that includes everything they want.
  • Nurses learn to say YES to themselves first without guilt.
  • Nurses learn holistic self-care in every nursing school curriculum.
  • Nurses learn to say NO without guilt.
  • Nurses learn effective communication in nursing school.
  • Nurses ask for what they need from their employer.
  • Nurses ask for support from their managers.
  • Nurses complete unsafe staffing forms.
  • Nurses stand in their power by refraining from the phrase “just a nurse”.
  • Nurses ask for coverage so they can take their breaks.
  • Nurses communicate clearly and effectively.
  • Nurses get support from other nurses who understand what they are going through.
  • Nurses believe that they can make a difference in their own lives.
  • Nurses walk their talk.
  • Nurses demand respect as the professionals they are and will refrain from engaging with anyone who is not honoring that expectation.
  • Nurses respect one another.
  • Nurses help one another.

Nursing is one of the most noble professions on the planet. I am honored to be a nurse. I am on a mission to help nurses stand in their power and become the backbone of healthcare that we are. We are at a tipping point. We need strong, healthy, savvy nurses now more than ever before. If we want to be respected and treated well we have to start acting like we matter. I hate to see nurses go through nursing school just to quit one or two years in because it is too unhealthy and stressful. It does not have to be that way.  A nurse should not have to give up a healthy lifestyle or his/her career because it makes him/her ill.

If you are stuck in a lifestyle of poor health or you are thinking about leaving the nursing profession, I would like to speak with you. I teach nurses how to take what you already have and redesign your life so that you can be your own boss and thrive in your career and your health. Call me today at 347-766-8773 for a complimentary session to discover how I can help you thrive in your health and career. You can also schedule your complimentary session here: http://bit.ly/1VYufS8

Please share below how you act like you matter in life and as a nurse. This is a place for positivity and action.

Wishing you empowerment and great choices today and everyday,

Lisbeth,

Nurse and Creator of Healthy Nurse by Design