Sunday, November 16, 2014

Your Nursing Career: Stagnation or Flow?

As nurses, our careers are fed by movement, not by stagnation. Nursing can be a very dynamic career path, and how you approach the trajectory of your professional development can be greatly influenced by many aspects of your life. At this juncture, is your career stagnant or flowing? 

Stagnant or Flowing? 

When you take a look at your nursing career, is it a flowing river of possibility and growth, or is it a dry riverbed that's hungry for the moisture of your curiosity?

The flow of your career is a perpetual movement if you will allow it to be, and we must consistently guard against burnout and the loss of ambition and motivation.

Still Waters Run Deep

While forward movement is what we're looking for in the bigger picture, stillness can also be our ally, especially if it's stillness born of contemplative curiosity, not of complacency or fear.

Making a change in your employment out of a simple, burning need for change isn't necessarily a great strategy. It's sort of like moving across the country in search of what's frequently called a "geographic cure". The novelty may help for a while, but decisions made with more forethought and reasoning are generally recommended (and are often more successful and fruitful).

If you're feeling the need for change but aren't certain what that change should be, looking inward for guidance can sometimes be more powerful than looking outward.

Being Expansive 

At different times, we flow like a river, sit still like a deep, cold lake, or we feel expansive like the sea. That expansiveness can be where the ideas flow, and these times can be when you reach out to those who can open your mind to the possibilities that perhaps you can't see. At moments of expansion, we allow our hearts and spirits to take the broader view.

When we feel stuck in our nursing career and can't seem to see the forest for the trees, expansive energy like the ocean may be what we need to prop the door open to greater possibilities.

The ocean cycles through it's tides, and it never argues with what comes naturally. And for us, it's the same. Our career can hit low tide or high tide, a period of ebbing or flowing, and our success, happiness and satisfaction depend on how much we can remain open to what's next.

Fly Free

Your nursing career should not feel restrictive. Rather, it should feel  expansive and filled with possibility.

If your career is not at a place of expansion, don't despair. There are places to turn for support, people to lean on, professionals to advise you, and a deep place within you that may have all of the answers you need.

You were meant to fly, not to be boxed in or pigeonholed. Look for the avenues that offer growth and a sense of possibility, and then lean into those places. If one street leads to a dead end, turn around and go elsewhere. The map isn't necessarily predetermined, and the outcome is up for grabs. And sometimes, when the path isn't entirely clear, we create the path by taking the first step.

I wish you the flight of your life. And when you look down at that ocean or river of possibility, know that there's enough abundance for all to experience a nursing career filled with satisfaction, growth, and joy.

Enjoy the ride.

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