Nurse holding patient's hands

Self care meets true care in nursing

Jun 5, 2020 | Self care

Nursing is an incredible profession. Sometimes we can become so busy with all that we need to do for people in our care that we can overlook how powerful the simplicity of nursing care really is. Very simply we are in a position where we can connect deeply to people through working with the body. 

Nursing care is a beautiful way of connecting to another human being. We could say then that the human body of another offers us a point of connection. 

As nurses we can completely underestimate the power of our healing touch and the power of our healing presence. For example:

  • Showering someone can be seen as merely a task to be completed or it can be appreciated as a potential healing activity for the patient, through the way we attend to the bathing, the quality of our connection and conversation and our attention to every detail
  • The way we touch a patient to do their blood pressure or pulse
  • The way we greet them at the start of the shift and meet them with our eyes. 

All of our care offers an intimacy in each moment and an opportunity for a deeper connection. Given this, nursing is much more than the completion of tasks.  When we get caught up in ‘the task’ or ‘the doing’ itself we can lose complete sight of the magnificence we offer when we are present. 

There is such an intimacy in the nursing care that we can provide. We know that we support our patients through, for example, the personal care that we attend to. We adjust and change how we approach patients in these moments because we see what a person needs.

Understanding that the way we care for ourselves and the quality of our personal relationship supports us to bring that same depth of intimacy to the way we care for a patient.

Nurses are the ultimate role models for a person’s wellbeing. The quality, care and attention we bring to our patients is what restores the value in them that they are worth caring for to the finest detail. This either confirms and meets them or offers them an opportunity to feel this quality and continue holding this value in the care for themselves.

Whilst we have all learned about and fully appreciate the wisdom of the human body’s physicality and the wonderment of its harmonious inner workings, it is so important to appreciate what we offer to our patients in the detail of care, when we are coming from the loving quality of our sensitivity and tender touch. It’s the way in which we approach the care that we provide that makes a true difference. 

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