Describe how you might select a nursing theory. What factors would you consider in determining the feasibility of the theory for your setting?
When I think about the time that I first considered becoming a nurse, it was because I knew I wanted to go into the healthcare field. These first initial thoughts were while I was in high school. Fast forward to years later as I was completing my degree in Nutrition, I wanted a career that I felt passionate about. It wasn’t until I began taking classes to become a nurse that I actually felt passionate about what I was learning and knew I had chosen the right field. The nurses that I worked along as members of the care team, prior to becoming a nurse myself, seemed to have all the qualities I felt a good nurse should have; being caring, hardworking, and selfless. There are many different nursing theories to choose from that reflect nursing practice. Nursing theories exist to improve patient outcomes (Smith, 2015). In selecting a nursing theory, I would choose a theory that tends to mirror how I view nursing and how I practice nursing myself. A theory that discusses the importance of nursing being caring individuals throughout the nursing process. According to (Smith, 2015), theories guide our thinking and provide a foundation for research. Since nursing theories can guide practice, it is important that the theory is relevant to your current setting. I would not choose a theory that focuses on the rehabilitation of patients if that is not practiced in my area of work. I would have to think about the ways I interact with patients and how theory can motivate that.
Analyze how the history of Christianity has framed the spiritual dimensions of nursing theory.
From a personal perspective I believe Christianity and the spiritual dimensions of nursing can be tied together due to their similarities. Some may say that a pastor who teaches Christianity was called to minister and that they have a special talent when it comes to ministry. In nursing we are called to care for the sick. Many nurses are able to describe an event or other personal experience that lead them to wanting to become a nurse. Both persons were called on to help and care for people in need. According to (Obrien, 2011), Jesus’ main mission was to provide service to the sick. In the bible there are scriptures that describe Jesus as a healer. The church I used to attend as a child had “nurses” in it. They were not all certified nurses, but they were there to care for the congregation. If someone became ill or fainted during church the nurses would come to their aid. They usually dressed in all white uniforms with hats similar to nursing uniforms prior to scrubs. Christianity formed the basis of nursing as a healing and compassionate profession. Over the years the tasks that nurses complete have become more technical, such as starting IVs and assisting in surgical procedures, but the foundation of Christianity was always there. Nurses develop caring relationships with their patients while they are taking care of them. Not only do nurses develop special relationships but they have to learn about the cultural practices of each patient. Trying to understand the spiritual needs of a person, while providing holistic and patient centered care, can be difficult, but also rewarding for a nurse (Barber, 2019).
Explain how your personal perspective on nursing theory can guide your practice, both now and in your future as a nurse leader.
Each individual person has their own understanding of nursing theories and how they have helped the nursing field. Thoughts, observations, predictions, and conclusions all shape nursing theories (Smith, 2015). I believe nursing theories help set the pathway for nursing research, education, and in professional practice. In my current practice at the clinic each provider sees patient independently, but they all work together to provide a particular service. For example, new mothers can receive lactation services at our clinic. This was a service that was chosen when the vision of the practice was formed. Parents also trust that when their children are being examined for a physical or receiving vaccinations, they are getting the correct information. Depending on what type of practice you have depends on the theory that will guide how patients are being treated. Another example is a clinic that provides holistic care may have an objective to heal patients naturally. Some offices do not offer this service and patients that are looking for an alternative to medicine would have to look elsewhere. In my future practice as a nurse practitioner, I can use nursing theory to direct how I choose to care for my patients. Every practitioner has their own way of speaking with the patients, doing their assessments and even following up. I can begin to think now of what type of practitioner I want to be in my future practice. Not only can I use nurse theory, but I can choose to lead with a spiritual framework as well.
Barber, C. (2019). Working within a spiritual framework. British Journal of Nursing, 28(4).
Obrien, M.E. (2011). Servant leadership in nursing: Spirituality and practice in contemporary health care. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett
Smith, M.C. & Parker, M.E. (2015). Nursing theories and nursing practice (4th ed). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis