President's Column - January 2021
We have officially said goodbye to 2020. It is a year that will not be forgotten, and while it was a very difficult year, I find myself looking for the silver lining as we move into 2021.
In May 2019, I changed jobs and became a healthcare consultant. I travel from Monday-Thursday almost every week for this job. While I love to travel and work with nurses and hospitals across the country, being home with my husband and two kids since March 2020 has been a valuable gift.
I will cherish this time in which I have been able to work and spend time with my family. Besides being safe at home during 2020, the other thing that has helped me is hope.
Optimism has not always come easy to me, but I have learned to be more positive throughout my life. I have taught myself to find the good in challenging situations and look towards the future with a vision of the tough times being less difficult.
Recently, I read that envisioning a better future is part having hope and being hopeful. One of the ways I maintain hope and get myself through difficult times is to plan my next vacation. My family and I are always planning our next vacation.
This helps us to get through challenging times like finishing a semester in school, getting through a project at work, and living through a cold Kansas winter.
Thinking about going somewhere with warm sunshine and with green grass and green trees helps us not to detest our bare trees and gray days. Planning future vacations give me and my family hope for fun times ahead.
Other ways I maintain hope in my life is to look forward to new episodes of my favorite tv shows, watching my favorite basketball team play, and ordering food from my favorite restaurant to give myself a break from cooking.
Hope is a small word that can make a big impact and having it has certainly helped me rebuild and maintain my resilience in 2020.
As I think more about hope, I am reminded how much hope nurses provide to patients and even each other. When we are caring for patients, we are the ones who have conversations with them about their futures and help them to set goals to improve each day.
On the day a patient is discharged from the hospital, we are there to encourage them and provide them with the hope they will not have to return. During an especially challenging shift, my coworkers have provided me with hope many times, even if that hope was that we all get to clock out and go home at the end of our shift.
Often, they provided words of encouragement and a sense of trust that would help me complete the necessary tasks to ensure high quality patient care was provided to all my assigned patients. Think about the numerous times you instill hope in the moments and lives of your patients and colleagues.
Hope is an invaluable resource we can use to work towards a better future.
Nothing in 2020 provided me more hope than seeing photos of my nursing friends and colleagues receiving their COVID-19 vaccines. You could just see the relief and hope on their faces. I now envision 2021 as the year this pandemic will end, and I hope we will soon be reunited with friends and family and get to travel once again.
Take some time in this new year to find hope for yourselves and spread it to others. No matter how small the gesture is, it will have a lasting impact.