A personal nursing philosophy outlines the thoughts and beliefs that an individual considers to be true regarding the nature of nursing as a profession. It forms a basis for nursing activities that include interactions with patients and their families and the alleviation of human suffering. A nursing philosophy endorses specific values that inform the decisions and actions of nurses in their daily practice. My nursing philosophy is based on core values that include ethics, dedication, honesty, accountability, and compassion. It is founded on the need to alleviate human suffering and improve society’s wellbeing through the treatment and prevention of diseases.
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The four nursing metaparadigms (person, health, environment, and nursing) are the most important components of a nursing philosophy because they influence all nursing activities (Smith & Parker, 2015). My beliefs about each of the aforementioned aspects would bring meaning and direction to my nursing practice in varied ways.
A person is a rational and spiritually-oriented being with specific needs that must be met in order to alleviate suffering and promote health. I believe that human beings possess inherent dignity and value, and so, they are the heart of the nursing profession. This metaparadigm would bring purpose to my practice because my decisions and actions would be aimed at providing patient-centered care that addresses the emotional, psychological, spiritual, and physical needs of patients. Patient care would be offered based on the understanding that individuals deserve to be treated with respect and compassion (Chadwick & Gallagher, 2016). Respecting the wishes of the patient and providing health care in accordance with the professional ethics of nursing would be the main goal. In addition, we offered her citrus fruits and hot tea laced with honey and lemon to prevent dehydration.
I offer individual-centered care in my practice because all patients are unique. I have cared for many cancer patients who had different physical and psychological needs. They were made calm, happy, angry, and anxious by different things. Each patient was unique. For instance, some were made happy by spending time with their caretakers talking while others preferred to be alone. Music would calm some patients while it made others angry because they preferred to spend time in silence. Health care was individualized based on the effect of certain actions on patients’ emotions.
The health component of nursing refers to an individual’s status with regard to physical, psychological, and spiritual wellbeing. In addition to the absence of disease, it encompasses other factors such as the moral, aesthetic, and social aspects of health care (Delves-Yates, 2015). I believe that the prevention and treatment of disease is the hallmark of nursing. Moreover, human wellness should be enhanced in physical, spiritual, social, and psychological realms. For example, individuals are not healthy if they are unable to form strong relationships even though their bodies might be disease-free (Smith & Parker, 2015). These beliefs form a holistic approach to nursing that addresses all the needs of patients, and so, they would direct my practice. The body might be disease-free but the patient could be experiencing spiritual and psychological disturbances that compromise their wellbeing. These beliefs would direct my practice to go beyond treating disease to helping patients improve their relationships, find purpose, enhance connectedness, and create harmony in their lives.
A patient who had cancer sought my professional help because his situation was worsening, though he had been undergoing treatment for about eight months. After a thorough evaluation, I realized that the disease had made him anxious and depressed because of the constant fear that he would die young, hence the deteriorating situation. His physician had informed him that the situation did not have serious health risks and he would survive. However, the side effects of chemotherapy and other treatments had an adverse effect on him. I offered professional counseling that aided in the alleviation of depression and anxiety, which enhanced the recovery process.
Environment refers to the internal and external factors that define the surroundings in which people live and work. I believe that nurses have the responsibility to provide favorable environments that promote patient recuperation by altering various components in order to promote human wellness. A patient’s recovery is influenced by the environment, and so, nurses should strive to provide an environment that promotes mental and physical wellbeing during recuperation (Kim, 2015). These beliefs are important because they would influence all decisions related to the environment in which a patient lives. They would form the basis of my decisions regarding how factors such as personal relationships, culture, geographic location, and technology affect the patient’s recovery process. I would strive to alter the environment in different ways in order to improve the patient’s health status.
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When my grandmother was suffering from the common cold, her recovery was slow because she was not taking healthy foods and fluids. In order to speed up her recuperation, we had to give her a lot of fluids and healthy foods such as wild salmon, chicken soup, sweet potato, dark leafy greens, and garlic. The change in environment made remarkable change in her recovery.
Nursing refers to the application of knowledge and technical skills in the maintenance, restoration, and promotion of wellness in patients through the eradication and prevention of disease. I believe that nurses should possess skills and knowledge on a wide range of areas including primary, secondary, and tertiary management of diseases and promotion of public health. Nurses should conduct their practice with compassion. I also believe that the alleviation of physical, social, psychological, and spiritual pain is the most important role of a nurse. Healthcare professionals should be able to anticipate health problems, develop mitigation strategies, alleviate the effects of diseases with regard to patient welfare, and offer solutions to serious health problems that afflict society (Kim, 2015). This aspect would provide meaning and direction because my nursing practice would be aimed at delivering optimal health outcomes through the formation of mutual relationships that are based on trust and compassion. It would provide direction also because my practice would aim to apply knowledge, skills, technology, and professional judgment in ways that promote patient wellbeing without disrespecting their beliefs and cultural norms.
A patient who was suffering from diabetes was placed under my care for close monitoring because she had refused to take her medication. I established a close relationship with her in order to make her feel safe and comfortable. The constant talking and sharing strengthened the bond between us, and it allowed me to provide patient-centered care. I taught her about the various ways of managing her condition in order to avoid the development of other conditions such as depression and cardiovascular disease.
My nursing philosophy is based on the belief that the main role of a nurse is to alleviate the physical, emotional, social, and spiritual suffering of patients and improve the wellbeing of society. These goals are achieved by forming mutual relationships with patients and exercising compassion in the prevention and treatment of disease. My beliefs about the four nursing metaparadigms would bring meaning and direction because they would be the foundation of my nursing practice. They would influence all decisions regarding interactions with patients and their families as well as the provision of quality care.
Chadwick, R., & Gallagher, A. (2016). Ethics and nursing practice (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.
Delves-Yates, C. (2015). Essentials of nursing practice (1st ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.
Kim, H. S. (2015). The essence of nursing practice: Philosophy and perspective (3rd ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.
Smith, M. C., & Parker, M. E. (2015). Nursing theories and nursing practice (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F. A. Davis.