Tag Archives: Holistic Nursing

Nurse boss-a blog dedicated to nurses

Welcome to the 22nd 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, Joyce Harrell has so much to share with you about life, career, and whole body healing. I love how she transformed her nursing burnout into a new nursing career that is bringing healing not only to herself, but thousands of others. My favorite part of her interview is her ABC’s of personal growth. 

Joyce Harrell, RN

1.What are you doing now? 

I work PRN as an Oncology Nurse while I’m building my business as a Wellness Coach. I share whole person wellness concepts through a program called the Wellness Inventory. In addition to being a wellness coach, I integrate aromatherapy and herbal support for my clients. I’m part owner in an on-site Wellness Center, and I also have an online business that mirrors my wellness center. Future plans are in the works to create CEU Aromatherapy and Herbal programs for nurses. I just returned from Europe where I completed an Aromatherapy Palliative Care program for health care providers. I’m going to be creating a holistic Palliative Care program locally, and also in the future train nurses here in the United States along the same path.

I also have a blog that is monetized. I write as an integrative wellness coach on stress management, mindset issues, and aromatherapy/herbal support. I also write some articles specifically for nurses on wellness.

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 have studied and been interested in integrative health for over 30 years now. However, the wellness coaching part entered my life a few years after I experienced a severe burnout period in my nursing career 10 years ago. It wasn’t until I discovered the healing tools as I studied wellness coaching that my life experienced a shift. I realized at that time, I experienced the severe burnout because I wasn’t equipped with tools needed to navigate through my stress and overwhelm.

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

Nursing is such a healing art and science. You start with critical thinking skills, but those are enhanced with experience. You gain experience dealing with people (easy and difficult people). You learn how to prioritize tasks, and also how to lead and delegate. Holistic nursing is geared toward healing of mind, body, and spirit. As we learn to honor our own holistic framework, we are able to honor dreams and inner passions for creating a life we love.

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

Confidence! Confidence in your ability to achieve your goals and dreams.  For me, I accomplish this with what I call my ABC’s of personal growth.  A) Authentic living. This is honoring our dreams, passions, desires, and purpose. Being authentic means to be true to who we are, even when opposition comes and it feels we are swimming upstream against popular thoughts. True pioneers were never among the masses. B) Boundaries.  Being able to set boundaries for our own peace, safety, healing, and path. There are many voices calling out to us to get us off course, and inviting us down paths that don’t resonate. Again being authentic and on point to our goals and dreams will allow us to say no when we want to say no, and to say yes to those experiences which are part of our journey.  Better is always the sidetrack for BEST. C) Creativity… Allowing our creative side to flow is essential to our health and success as a nurse boss. Often the left brain side (scientific) takes over and while we need this part to operate the business side of things, it’s imperative to set aside creative times for growth and new ideas. Creativity sessions are where I get my best ideas for my journey. This is where I dream, grow, and experience.

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

My biggest obstacle is actually me. Since I’ve started my journey I’ve participated in several mindset programs to shift my thinking from “I’m not good enough”, “who will want what I have to offer”, to “My experiences and passion attract those who need what I am offering”. It’s been very empowering for me personally to realize I offer what people need. I believe most people’s biggest obstacle is their own personal self and lack of confidence of being able to be successful doing something outside the norm. We nurse bosses are really pioneers.

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

In my role as a wellness coach I have the time to be supportive in empowering my client to tap into the answers which already lie within. I’m able to be more holistic and support whole person wellness. I find even as a nurse who still works some hours within a traditional nursing role, I implement some of my wellness coaching skills, but it’s not the same. There is not time allotted or emphasis truly given to be able to help my patients look at body mind and spirit. The emphasis of course in most traditional settings is on the physical (unless you are a mental health nurse).

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?

Nurses who feel stuck in their current role should explore what it is they really want to do. Sometimes nurses accept roles they really aren’t happy in. So, look at my ABC’s.  Be Authentic when you are looking for a position, or when looking for something beyond the status quo. Don’t accept a role you know isn’t a fit. Set your boundaries, and learn to say yes only when you know it’s right. Then have creative sessions to explore what you really want from your life. It is more time? More money? What are interest or hobbies or passions you have outside of nursing? Is there a way to be creative and “marry” the two? Nursing and your passion? Think outside the box.  Look for a nurse mentor who is already doing what you want to do. Mentor with them.

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

I am a member of the National Nurses in Business. This is a great resource with many ideas and resources to start your own business.

Now for fun:

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

I wish I could say I had a mystery novel, or fun fiction on my nightstand. I don’t. I’ve always got 2-3 books going at one time. 

I’ve got Nurse Herbalist by Dr. Martha Libster.   

Complementary Therapy in End Of Life Care by Madeleine Kerkhof-Knapp Hayes.

And the latest copy of Beginnings from American Holistic Nurses Association.

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

This is a fun one.  For a non-healthy food, I’d have to say Ice Cream. More specifically: Chocolate-Peanut Butter Gelato.  And for a Healthy food, I could eat an avocado every day for the rest of my life! Love them!

11. How can we get in touch with you? 

The best way to get in touch with me is through email. My email is [email protected].  You can also find my writings at http://www.joyceharrell.com


Thank you for your energy and taking the time to read Nurse Boss. Please share with us what you are doing to own your nursing acumen, creativity, and imagination.

If you want to join the Nurse Boss movement to up the vibe of the nursing collective, join us over on Facebook at Nurse Boss Tribe http://bit.ly/2aE9vkh

Keep shining your light,



Nurse Boss

Wellness at Work

Wellness at Work is a big trend these days. It’s a no brainer for employers. If you want to reduce sick and disability pay and retain your employees for longer than six months, it’s a must. For employers who need to tighten the belt on nurse retention this is a big deal. Creating work environments that promote health and wellness not just for patients, but employees is a must to be competitive in the marketplace.

If you are a nurse working in a hospital have you ever stopped to consider the physical environment? I am talking about the air quality, the noise, the furnishings, the access to nature.  Imagine if hospitals started designing our work spaces with our health in mind…….

I worked at a hospital that had beautiful landscaping and access to nature. It was so refreshing to step outside and escape in the natural surroundings just for a few minutes. I always returned refreshed and less stressed. Sometimes, it’s the simplest things that can make the biggest impact.

Some facilities provide activities and outlets for their nurses to renew and relax, like this massage chair at  Cancer Treatment Centers of America at Midwestern Regional Medical Center in Zion, IL. It is the brainchild of Jillianne Shriver, RN, BSN, HN-BC, a team lead for the inpatient medical oncology unit who thought of it after attending a training on holistic nursing. She literally used an old storage closet and filled the room with a massage chair and other items for relaxation, such as: tools for aromatherapy, journaling, a yoga mat, Tibetan singing bowls, and a small water feature.  Check it out here: Nurse Renewal

Nurses need a place to unwind and debrief while on the job. It just makes good sense. All parties win. Employer, nurse, and patient. I love seeing nurses creating simple solutions that make staying well on the job easier and it is refreshing to see collaboration from employers seeking this input.

I love creativity, innovation, sustainability, pushing the edge (in a healthy way), and non-toxic everything. So, when I stumbled across Natalie Nixon’s article, 8 Ways to Design Health Care, I was very interested. The article is so chock-full of awesome, but I only want to talk about the first point she makes. Read it in its entirety here: Health Care Design

The first point she makes is about “modular health” and how physical structures and indoor environments impact our health. At Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota they have something called the Well Living Lab which is a research facility dedicated to studying how our physical environments impact our health and finding ways to create healthier indoor spaces. Check it out here: Well Living Lab 

This design is the brainchild of Delos, a company that focuses on seven categories relevant to indoor health: air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind.  Delos is the pioneer of Wellness Real Estate™, a business that places health and wellness at the center of design and construction.

These are all things I can support. What about you? What cool things is your hospital or work environment doing to promote your wellness as a nurse?

Keep innovating and expecting great things,