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How evidence-based practice can improve nurse satisfaction

If a nurse is unsatisfied with their career or feeling burnt out on nursing, taking an evidence-based approach can help them rediscover their passion for nursing. Robert Hess Jr., PhD, RN, FAAN and co-author of HCPro’s Shared Governance book, recently wrote a piece about EBP and nursing careers; here are some ways to apply EBP in your career:

  • Update your practices. Nursing is changing all of the time! If you feel like you’re stuck doing the same thing every day for years, you’re probably not using the most up-to-date practices. Nurse scientists and researchers are studying and updating practices for nurse specialties all of the time, and these changes can benefit patients and nurses alike. Try joining your specialty group’s professional organizations, attend professional events, and subscribe to specialty journals to keep abreast of the latest practices in nursing. Changing up your routine and increasing your engagement can bring the excitement back to your career!
  • Use EBP in your career. Evidence-based research is not just conducted on healthcare practices. There is organizational research that provides indicators for when nurses should consider a career change, such as switching roles, going back to school, or even leaving their current job. Burnout has been measured for decades, and evaluating your own signs of job fatigue can be instructive for potential career decisions. Nursing has a plethora of opportunities outside of the hospital bedroom, and feeling burnout could be your signal to explore them.
  • Evaluate your environment. Research has found the workplace satisfaction can correlate with career satisfaction. Observe your colleagues; do they seem happy? Do they participate in work group activities, both at work and outside of work? Having coworkers that are satisfied with their jobs has a positive impact on your own satisfaction, and if you’re feeling career fatigue, sometimes your coworkers can fuel your enthusiasm.

For more tips about career satisfaction and burnout, check out these articles from the Strategies for Nurse Managers’ Reading Room:

Delegation prevents nurse manager burnout

RN satisfaction survey promotes positive change


How nurse executives can help tired nurses

Tips for recommitting to nursing in the new year

The new year is often a time for retrospection and reflection, especially when it comes to your career. If you’re starting to feel burnt out on nursing but not quite ready for a career change, here is some advice to freshen things up in the new year.

  • Reflect on your past: Sometimes the best way to go forward is to look back. What drew you to nursing in the first place? Why was a career in nursing right for you? Think about the positive experiences you’ve had as a nurse that reaffirmed your career goals. Treat your next shift like it’s your first day; what excites you? What makes you nervous? Sometimes asking these questions can reinvigorate how you approach your work.
  • Connect (and disconnect): If you’re feeling down about your job, sometimes the best solution is to ask for help. Reach out to your peers and develop a support system to help yourself and others. If you think there’s something that could make you happier at work, talk to your managers about it; sometimes a small change can have a profound effect.

    It’s also important to let go sometimes. Being a caregiver, interacting with patients at some of the worst times in their lives can negatively impact your outlook and make your job even more difficult. Try to focus on the good you’ve done for patients and don’t take it personally when a patient struggles or suffers.

  • Commit to the new: Even though it doesn’t always feel like it, taking on new challenges can be a great way to energize your career. Seek out new experiences and opportunities; take the frustrations of the day and channel it toward learning a new skill or pursuing additional training options. Reflecting on your weaknesses can be difficult at first, but identifying them and working towards improvement can be satisfying and build you confidence.

    Another great way to embrace the new is working with nursing students or new nurses. They bring energy and enthusiasm to the job, and becoming a preceptor or informal mentor can be a great way to grow your own enthusiasm while furthering your career.

For more articles about avoiding burnout and developing your career, check out the Health & Wellness section of the Strategies for Nurse Managers Reading Room!

Hospitals trying out Pokemon Go in a clinical setting

Check out this article from Health Leaders Media:

A trial at the University of Washington Medicine Burn Center aims to find out if the game is more stimulating and engaging than the pain patients are experiencing.

Hospitals and health systems have been grappling with how to deal with Pokémon Go since the mobile gaming phenomenon hit earlier this summer.

Massachusetts General Hospital banned staff from playing the game on its campus, warning of possible privacy violations, and Allegheny Health Network asked the game’s maker to remove all of its locations from the app.

But some hospitals are finding that there are upside to patients using Pokémon Go.

Getting Patients Out of Bed

C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, MI, has been urging its young patients to play the game in an effort to get them out of bed and socialize with other kids.

“It’s a fun way to encourage patients to be mobile,” J.J Bouchard, the hospital’s digital media manager and certified child life specialist, told USA Today. “This app is getting patients out of beds and moving around.”

A trial that University of Washington Medicine Burn Center researchers are conducting at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, WA, is looking at how playing Pokémon Go may help keep patients moving while also taking their minds off the pain.

“Our challenge is to find something that’s more stimulating and engaging than pain they’re experiencing, so something like virtual reality that’s new or Pokémon Go that’s new, it’s more exciting and takes attention away from the pain,” Shelley Wiechman, attending psychologist in the Burn and Pediatric Trauma Service and Pediatric Primary Care Clinic at Harborview, told the local media.

The Pokémon Go trial isn’t the first time the hospital has tested augmented and virtual reality games for pain management, but it’s the first that allows patients to use their legs and keep their infected areas mobile.

Weichman said if patients using the game continue to show progress, the staff may begin using Fitbits to track patients’ steps.

So what do you think? Can mobile games help patients in your hospitals? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Rock Your Health: Why Am I So Sleepy?

Just back from a relaxing weekend and about ready to put your head down on the desk and take a nap? Even this morning in Jazzercise, the person next to me said she was exhausted when she thought she would return all rested and energized. Right now I feel very tired myself, so I’m going to take a closer look at why I am so sleepy. I’ve found three good reasons, so read on and find out what they are.

Blood Sugar Effects

I remember eating a lot of hot dogs with white buns, chips, ice cream – all high glycemic carbs that enter your bloodstream fast and then crash your blood sugar just as fast. (Thank goodness I don’t eat like that all the time!) That leads to a groggy crashing feeling and if you eat like that all weekend, you can bet you will feel pretty sleepy. Did you eat like this over the weekend?

Hormone Effects

Once again, those high glycemic carbs are the culprit. They activate your brain to produce serotonin, a chemical that allows for calm and pleasant moods, while making tryptophan, the chemical responsible for sleepiness, more available to your brain. This is another reason high carb meals make you sleepy, says the National Sleep Foundation. So now you get a double whammy from eating all that junk food!

Overeating Effects

Overeating is one of the most common causes of sleepiness. After eating, your body routes more blood to your digestive system. Meals excessive in size require even more blood, which causes temporary deprivation of blood and nutrients in your brain and residual grogginess.

So that’s what caused me to be sleepy all the time! What about you?

Need some support around this issue? Email me and we can talk.

Rock Your Health: Lesson Learned When I Decluttered One Shelf

It’s time to lighten your load and start living clutter free!

  • You can avoid the clutter and stress out all you want, but nothing will change until you take action.
  • You can make a commitment to another person, so you will have to keep your word.
  • You can declutter efficiently and in less time by using the timer on your cell phone to keep you moving.
  • You can add energetic music to the process so if feels like fun; if you can trick yourself into feeling like you are having fun, you’ll feel like the best organizer in the world!
  • The best thing for me is admiring my work and wanting to keep that shelf looking this way every day. And now on to the next challenge – my desk!

 

What have you learned when you cleaned your office? Want some support with this issue? I’m an expert on clutter and can coach you thru this process. Email me and let’s talk!

Rock Your Health: If it’s not one thing, it’s another! The Art of Accepting the Inevitable

What does it mean to accept the inevitable? I’ve been pondering this lately as I’m getting older, but things are changing that I have no control over. For example, I can’t jump around in Jazzercise like I used to: I have to step in place because my knees will bother me if I don’t. I find that I need a little rest time in my day so that I can keep going on into the evening with activities. I find that I’m more assertive than I used to be – yes, I’m a bit mouthy – and don’t really care about the consequences.

Things are changing, and I’m encountering some of the same issues my mother experienced. I find that I have a better understanding my mother’s aging process as I get older.

The bottom line is it’s my job to accept my age changes rather than complain and resist. It’s just the way it is.

Now I know this isn’t easy, and for sure it hasn’t been for me (or my mother). I remember when I used to run for fitness, but after several years it was causing me a lot of back pain. So I had to stop running and just do walking. And of course that made me depressed, because I thought I’ll never be as healthy as I want to be from just walking. But eventually I realized that walking is a great fitness activity for me now!

But acceptance of a change might not come right away. But if you give it some time and appreciate the fact that this may be a new normal for you, then you can finally make peace with it and accept it.

What are you going through right now that is challenging you?

Here are my tips to help you with acceptance of anything that might be changing for you that you are starting to resist.

A – Allow the change to come into being instead of fighting it.

C – Communicate your feelings with family or friends so you don’t bottle things up.

C – Create new opportunities that will achieve the same benefit you’ve been looking for differently.

E – Eliminate negative feelings that arise and focus on how can you shift and move forward with your life.

P – Pretend everything is as it should be, and relax into these changes to allow your body and mind to relax as well.

T – Train yourself to keep moving forward instead of yielding to depression, regret, and anger.

A – Allow time to accept the changes and let your mind go through the stages of grief and loss.

N – Notice when you have shifted into accepting your new reality and celebrate your progress.

C – Collaborate with others going through a similar situation and get ideas on how they’re dealing with it.

E – Enjoy the process of change as another wonderful thing about being alive!

And finally, I love this reminder from one of my support groups – “When I got busy, I got better.”

So I got busy writing this blog and now I feel better!

If you need some support around acceptance, contact me for a quick laser coaching session to give you a boost.

Rock Your Health: Stop Muttering and Start Decluttering – Try A 12 Step Approach

If you are CREATIVE like me, clutter stays cluttered and causes muttering about the clutter, but it never gets decluttered!

So what’s that all about? For me, cluttering results from being blessed – or cursed – with being a person who is VISUAL. You need to have everything in view so you can find it. OUT OF SIGHT AND OUT OF MIND is your motto. Can you relate? So how do you manage that?

Let’s apply this issue to a 12 Step Program, of which I am very familiar and has helped me greatly in the past with issues out of my control.

  1. Admit you are powerless over clutter, it has become a barrier to managing your life and business successfully and causes you a great deal of unnecessary stress.
  2. Believe that a force greater than you can bring clutter under control if you just turn it over to the clutter gods for support.
  3. Make a commitment to getting regular decluttering done by committing it to your calendar.
  4. Search within yourself to discover why cluttering is happening in the first place and address that.
  5. Admit to yourself and others that just because it appears to be a problem, it is actually related to what kind of person you are and reflects the nature of a creative mind.
  6. Be willing to admit to yourself and others that just because you have the gift of creativity doesn’t mean you can’t control the clutter in your life.
  7. Ask the clutter gods of the universe to support your efforts in managing the clutter in a positive way.
  8. Make a list of all the people and projects you have disappointed because of you were less organized and efficient due to excess clutter.
  9. Share those truths with those affected and make amends.
  10. Continue to monitor your clutter daily and course correct promptly to avoid becoming paralyzed.
  11. Set your intention daily, using visualization on what it looks and feels like to live a clutter-free lifestyle.
  12. Share the message and lessons learned with others challenged by this issue.

Now you don’t have to do all of these steps right away. This is a major lifestyle change that thrives on doing one step at a time and moving on when you start seeing and “feeling” results.

Need some coaching support around this issue? Contact me for a laser coaching session.

Rock Your Health: Network or Die!

Are you contemplating having your own business? Check this out!

Did you know that “people need people” and in some cases when people don’t have human contact they can die? Newborns denied physical contact with other humans can actually die from this lack of contact, even when provided with proper nutrition and shelter. Older people who lack social contacts may be at increased risk of death if acute symptoms develop, because there is less of a network of confidantes to prompt medical attention.

Working for yourself is certainly different than having a job working for a boss and being around lots of people all day. There are always opportunities to make connections, be seen and known, and create new opportunities. But when you work for yourself, it is up to you to make those connections happen.

I’m just giving you a reality check in case you are about to embark on starting a business of your own and want to find out how to grow your business and avoid the “kiss of death” that happens to 50% of new businesses.

NETWORKING rules as a business builder and here’s why:

N – new connections are made with new people who may need your services
E – enjoyment happens when you learn about people’s hopes and dreams
T – trust develops when you connect with people on a regular basis
W – wonderful conversations often lead to friendships
O – opportunities arise to find even more people whom you can serve
R – rewards come from being able to help someone improve their life
K – kindred spirits show up the more people you meet
I – intimate conversations can lead to deeper relationships
N – notice what happens when you give the gift of listening to another person
G – great things occur when great people get together

So if you are going into business for yourself, networking with people on a regular basis is critical – but pays off with great rewards. What are your thoughts about this issue?

Rock Your Health: How to get what you want every time you ask

I know – that doesn’t sound possible. But how would you like to raise your odds of success?

Have you ever wanted something to happen to improve your life and it just wasn’t happening? No matter how hard you tried? Maybe you were trying too hard and need to slack off a bit. Sometimes we block our desires by pushing too hard and then get frustrated thinking “Why aren’t I getting anywhere? I’m working as hard as I can and getting nowhere.”

Here’s an example. I was teaching a class for teachers on how to bring positivity into the classroom using the Law of Attraction and suddenly realized that as much as I know about all the ways in the world to attract great things to my life, I still don’t always practice them. This class became a reminder of that, so I’d like to share with you five tips to help you do less, feel better and attract more.

Here are some tips to get you started.

  • First decide what desire you want to manifest for yourself
  • Create a Vision Board that represents what your desire looks like and display it where you see it every day
  • Schedule time every day to focus on your desire in a relaxed state
  • Practice techniques you enjoy daily that relax you like meditation, yoga, Tai Chi, exercise, listening to relaxing music, etc.
  • Keep a journal of all the things you start manifesting as proof that it works

Now you will be on your way to getting what you want (almost) every time you ask. I would love to hear your comments about this.

Rock Your Health: Need some spirit boosters to break free from the routine of work?

  • Turn OFF negative chatter on the news – it feeds into a “down feeling.”
  • Turn ON great music and read, relax, dance – whatever the music moves you to do.
  • Register for an online course or a webinar that is educational, uplifting, and inspiring.
  • Start cleaning, one drawer at a time to reduce clutter and open up space.
  • Call friends to catch up – one or two a week is a good dose.
  • Create home cooked meals, sit around a table together and have great conversation.
  • Start dreaming and planning your next getaway.
  • Gather unwanted things – take to Goodwill and ponder how someone else will love having what you don’t need anymore.
  • Do a favor for someone without telling them and imagine how good it makes them feel!
  • When all else fails, write down 25 things you are grateful for. This works every time!