I have been reflecting on a speech that was given at the most recent Florence Nightingale Commemoration Service back in the Summer asking directly to recall the rationale for taking the path of nursing. As revalidation comes around again I have been looking over the past three years to collate all the various elements that I have put together, and this was one of them that was impactful on considering my relationship with nursing.
As with many careers in healthcare, the paths are not always straight and many other avenues can be explored. For me though, my nursing background has provided a framework of a person-centric approach that is a fundamental in any role within healthcare. Why? - because healthcare is about relationships, whether with patients, families, colleagues, other sectors and providers, the list goes on. I have always been fascinated by people and my training gave me the opportunity to explore humanity in so many varied states, having the headspace for enquiry into the many aspect of the human self both looking inward and outward alike. I came out of my nurse training a very rounded person, far more ready for the world and life than I imagined possible. The most incredible aspect for me was the trust that existed within relationships with patients and most colleagues too. However over time I have recognised and observed that this alters between stakeholders due to the competitive nature of business. I do believe that this will be recognised further in the pursuit for change. Coming back to the centre of nursing you see the person, a sum of many parts, intertwined, needing to have needs met and independence promoted, individuality respected and uniqueness lauded. So when looking at collaboration, put the person at the centre and you have your focal point for vision and implementation - seek their engagement and you will progress with precision.
So nursing, for me, is a template that has shaped my self both personally and professionally. The demands and expectations have changed within nursing since Florence Nightingale’s time, however the words within the declaration of passing on from generation to generation holds the essence of sharing of knowledge and skills from colleague to colleague, nursing and multidisciplinary alike. For me this also includes the patient as the expert on themselves, and by doing this, we are facilitating self management and empowerment through a trusting relationship.