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.

There's no shortage of mentions of the annual Gallup poll that shows us nurses as being the most trusted professionals in the United States year after year. It's really no surprise that the public holds us in high esteem (Members of Congress and those who sell used cars are at the bottom of the list), and many of us likely wonder why our all-important and crucial work isn't more well paid. Yet like teachers, another group who are widely appreciated yet not compensated proportionately to their importance, we keep doing what we do because we're called to do so; dedication is our modus operandi

Nurses, you hold the hands of the dying, relieve pain, administer life-saving chemotherapy, care for sick children, conduct crucial research, provide evidence-based primary care, and so much more. Nursing has become much more professionalized over the last 30 or 40 years, with autonomous practice for APRNs and NPs, and many nurses striking out into the worlds of business and entrepreneurship.

Aside from all of the cards, hearts, chocolate, flowers, wine, and candy of Valentine's Day, I want to offer my sincerest thanks to you for being who you are and doing what you do. Healthcare would grind to an unceremonious halt without you; your individual and collective brilliance is unmatched in its ability to encompass intellectual knowledge, hands-on skill, and the very human arts of communication and compassion.

I could go on and on, but this is simply a love letter to you, nurses, and some love letters don't need to be long.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being the very compassionate lifeblood of healthcare around the world. 


Keith Carlson, RN, BSN, NC-BC, is the Board Certified Nurse Coach behind and the well-known nursing blog, Digital Doorway.

Keith is co-host of, a wildly popular nursing podcast; he also hosts The Nurse Keith Show, his own podcast focused on career advice and inspiration for nurses.

A widely published nurse writer, Keith is the author of "Savvy Networking For Nurses: Getting Connected and Staying Connected in the 21st Century," and has contributed chapters to a number of books related to the nursing profession. Keith has written for,,  MultiViews News Service, LPNtoBSNOnline, StaffGarden, AusMed, American Sentinel University, the ANA blog, Working Nurse Magazine, and other online publications.

Mr. Carlson brings a plethora of experience as a nurse thought leader, online nurse personality, podcaster, holistic career coach, writer, and well-known successful nurse entrepreneur. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico with his lovely and talented wife, Mary Rives.

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