Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Five Rights Of A Healthy Work Environment

I recently gave a presentation at a northern California nursing conference on the subject of healthy work environments for nurses. During my preparations, I spent a great deal of time pondering aloud about the scourge of nurse bullying and lateral violence, as well as why healthcare workplaces lend themselves so readily to unhealthy work conditions.

There are many reasons that bullying and unhealthy workplaces have become so common, and I’m sure that you, dear Reader, can rattle off a few without even thinking too hard.


Monday, May 15, 2017

The Continuum of Nurse Career Growth

The growth of your career as a nurse can be consciously self-generated, or simply a result of happenstance and a laissez-faire attitude towards professional development. Neither of these options are necessarily bad in and of themselves, but a thoughtfully sculpted career is definitely fodder for a much richer, satisfying, and rewarding trajectory.


Monday, May 01, 2017

A Nurse, A Wall, And A Bloody Forehead

As a nurse career coach, I hear a lot of stories, and some of those stories revolve around the way that nursing has sucked the life out of a nurse's ambition and self-confidence. And what I see is that nurses who feel demoralized and beaten down sometimes stay in jobs that are killing them because they just don't see another way. 



Monday, April 24, 2017

The 10,000-Foot View of Your Nursing Career

A few weeks ago, I was speaking with a career coaching client, and we were discussing how scary it can be to make a big change. In talking about the minutiae as well as the big picture, I encouraged her to always come back to the 10,000-foot view. "However," I said, "while the 10,000-foot view is a great thing to keep in mind, it can also give you vertigo."
 
Clouds, thousands of feet over Santa Fe, NM


Monday, April 17, 2017

The Three R's of Nursing

This blog post about what nurses really need and want was published in 2013; it's been updated for nursing in 2017. Enjoy!

There are some very basic things that nurses look for--and deserve--in the course of their nursing careers. It's clear that this list could probably be expanded to include many other ideas as well. I posited in that previous post that there are "Three R's" of nursing, and I identified them as respect, remuneration, and recognition.


Monday, April 10, 2017

The "Nursing Class Hero"

This post was originally published on June 24th, 2013. It has been slightly edited and updated for your edification and enjoyment. 

Fans of the late John Lennon might bristle at my adulteration of the title of a famous song by the iconic musician and peace activist, but a "nursing class hero" is certainly something to be.


Monday, April 03, 2017

Explaining What Nurses Do

This post about what nurses do and how nursing is perceived by the general public was originally posted in 2012. It's been updated and republished for your enjoyment and edification. 

When I tell people that I'm a nurse, they will often innocently ask, "So, how many hours do you work at the hospital?" While such questions are well-meaning, they belie the fact that so many people make wild assumptions about nurses and nursing, and most everyone has little idea what nurses actually do. I've expounded on this topic before, and will no doubt do so again.

If we're put in boxes by others, do we also unthinkingly put ourselves in boxes, as well?

Monday, March 27, 2017

5 Ways to Build Your Network of Nursing Career Allies

In the course of your nursing career, you need allies who can help you elevate and advance your journey as a professional nurse. Allies are easier to come by than you think, but so many nurses don't think strategically about this important aspect of nursing career development.

Since such a large number of nurses seem averse to consciously and purposefully building a professional network, here are five ways to build your network of nursing career allies.


Monday, March 13, 2017

Is Your Nursing Career on Autopilot?

Nurses, do you ever feel that your nursing career is on autopilot? Are you coasting, resting on your laurels, or otherwise sitting in the back seat of your career? This can work for a while, but it can eventually lead to boredom, ennui, and even burnout and an abandoned career. If you're on autopilot right now, would you like to get back in the pilot's seat?


Are you on autopilot in your career?

Monday, March 06, 2017

The New LinkedIn: Pay Attention, Nurses!

LinkedIn is an important networking tool for nurses and healthcare professionals, and there are changes afoot on the LinkedIn user interface (UI) that the savvy and prudent nurse needs to be cognizant of.

Some readers may be aware that LinkedIn was purchased by Microsoft in 2016, and the changes are now rolling out. If you haven't looked at your profile for a while, you may now be surprised when you log in. As of this writing in early March of 2017, most every user should be switched over to the new UI, so be prepared for some frustration as you adjust.


Monday, February 27, 2017

The "Shoulds" and "Coulds" of Your Nursing Career

In the world of nurses and nursing, it can feel like we are told what we “should” do with our careers much more often than what we “could” do. While the difference can seem subtle, it is actually something that can have a serious impact on the career path we choose and the subsequent satisfaction that we derive from our choices.


Monday, February 20, 2017

Lions, Gazelles, and Nurses

Nursing has a hierarchy of power and experience just like any other profession; in fact, it also has a hierarchy that sometimes feels akin to the laws of survival on the savanna or in the jungle.

Have you ever observed that the less experienced and more vulnerable nurses frequently get left on the outside, often falling prey to bullies and "predators"? This is the herd mentality at its worst, and many novice nurses are taken down by bullies and power-hungry colleagues who eat them alive when they're demonstrating the slightest weakness.


Monday, February 13, 2017

A Nursing Valentine

On this occasion of Valentine's Day, I want to take a pause for the cause of singing the praises of nurses; you are true heroes of healthcare and humanity.


Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Your Nursing Career Mitochondria

We all know that mitochondria are the energy-producing powerhouses within each cell of our bodies, synthesizing ATP (adenosine triphosphate) for us around the clock. In terms of your nursing career, what are the mitochondria that power your engine? What impetus, desires, goals, or motivations drive you forward? If you need to stoke the fire of your nursing career, the spark cannot be created in a vacuum.


Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Feeding Your Nursing Career

Your nursing career is a lot like your body; it needs to be fed, watered, exercised, and well-rested in order to function optimally. What kinds of nutrition does your career need? What nutritional deficits does your nursing career demonstrate? Are you willing to feed your career as well as you feed your own body?


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Nurses, Microscopes, and Telescopes

Some nurses appear to use a microscope when looking at their career options. If we take the microscope metaphor further, picture a glass slide being placed on the apparatus upon which the nurse has placed a solution containing her limited perception of what she can do with her career. What will she see? Only what she knows she is able to see.

On the other hand, picture the Hubble Telescope; it searches the known and unknown universe for what we already know is there, as well as what we don’t even yet know exists. Can we view our nursing careers with the same grand vision?


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Digital Doorway Nursing Blog Turns 12!

Well folks, it's hard to believe, but this nursing blog turns 12 today! And after all this time, Digital Doorway isn't even a teenager yet! What's up with that? But seriously, 12 years of blogging is significant, and I have none other but you to thank, Dear Reader, for this blog's continual success and global reach.


Nurse Practitioners Rock 2017!

Ten or fifteen years ago, many ordinary healthcare consumers may not have known much -- if anything -- about nurse practitioners. Moreover, only a small percentage would have received care from an NP. But in January of 2017, nurse practitioners are gaining ground like never before, so many nurses who are thinking about career mobility are likely considering the NP or APRN path.

Monday, January 09, 2017

Finding Meaning In Your Nursing Career

We all seek meaning in various aspects of our lives, and when we work in nursing and healthcare, we often look for meaning and value in our lives as professional nurses. Finding that meaning can be central to our identity and relative happiness, both personally and professionally. 


Monday, January 02, 2017

Your Nursing Career: Intentions and Positive Change


When the New Year begins in earnest, many of us nurses start to consider what we'd like to accomplish in our personal lives and nursing careers. We can run around like chickens afraid that the sky is falling all around us, or we can set our intentions and plan for an inspired year.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Nurses, The Holidays, and Work-Life Balance

There's no doubt about it, nurses; it's the holiday season, and many of us are feeling the pressure in our personal and professional lives. How do the holidays impact you, your mental and emotional health, your spiritual well-being, and your professional responsibilities as a nurse?


Monday, December 12, 2016

Hey Nurse; Got Resistance?

Have you ever found yourself resisting change? Has your nursing career stalled because you're afraid of taking a risk or doing something different? Change is indeed the only constant in the universe (aside from death and taxes), so it's something that we simply need to get comfortable with---over and over again!

What if we don't change at all...and something magical just happens?

Monday, November 28, 2016

Finding Your Center as a Nurse...and as a Human Being

In some spiritual traditions, there is a notion of finding one's center, the balancing point---the fulcrum--upon which your life can balance. In your nursing career, finding your center is an important practice, even as you and your life change with time. The center of your career may very well be a moving target; are you currently in touch with yours?


Monday, November 21, 2016

Giving Thanks For Nurses and Nursing

Friends and colleagues, at this time of year when gratitude moves to the center of many of our celebrations, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude for nurses, nursing, and the profession that has sustained me and put food on my table and gas in my car for more than twenty years. Do you feel as grateful for nursing and nurses as I do?


Monday, November 14, 2016

Building Your Nursing Career House

As a nurse, the house of your nursing career must stand on a solid foundation; once that foundation has been laid, your career can be built in the form of any structure you see fit. How are you building the house of your nursing career?