Hello dear professional colleagues, I hope you have been caring holistically? As for me, I have been trying my best!
I started a topic on why improved interpersonal relationships essential for good Nursing Image and I promised to continue in the next post which is the one you are reading now. If you will like to know more, kindly read to the end.
Interpersonal skills are basically about how you relate to others, but they also start with you. Many of your interpersonal relationship skills will be improved dramatically if you work on your personal skills. For example, people are likely to be more attracted to you if you can maintain a positive attitude. A positive attitude also means that you have an improved self-confidence.
Most Nurses are over worked due to poor staffing, therefore many are stressed! Once you are stressed, you are less likely to communicate effectively hence you tend to be rude or aggressive. It is therefore important to learn to recognize, manage and reduce stress in yourself.
Therefore, in order to have a good interpersonal relationship skill as a nurse, you must:
LOOK INWARD: work on yourself! What do I mean? You need to be emotionally intelligent!
Emotional Intelligence is the ability to understand your own and others’ emotions, and their effect on behavior and attitudes. Hence, emotional intelligence is both personal and interpersonal in its nature, but there is no doubt that improving your emotional intelligence will help in all areas of interpersonal skills. Daniel Goleman, the author of several of books on emotional intelligence, identified five key areas, three of which are personal, and two interpersonal.
The personal skills: i.e ‘how we manage ourselves’, is self-awareness, self-regulation, and motivation. This means that, the first steps towards understanding and managing the emotions of others( patients, relatives and colleagues) is to be able to understand and manage our own emotions, including understanding what motivates us (as nurses).
The social skills, or ‘how we handle relationships with others’, are empathy and social skills. These mean understanding and feeling for others, and then being able to interact effectively with them.
Improving your emotional intelligence therefore improves your understanding that other people have different points of view. It helps you to try to see things from their perspective. In doing so, you may learn something whilst gaining the respect and trust of people (patients, relatives and colleagues).
Another way to improve our interpersonal skills is to:
CONSCIOUSLY MAKE USE OF THE SKILLS YOU HAVE ACQUIRED: Many times we find ourselves in situations in which there is need to use interpersonal skills. Consciously putting yourself in those positions, and practicing your skills, then reflecting on the results, will help you to improve.
Finally, in order to improve your interpersonal relationship skills, you must:
Develop the habit of self-reflection: It is an important element in developing and improving interpersonal relationship skills. Taking time to think about previous conversations and other interpersonal interactions will enable you to learn from your mistakes and successes, and continue to develop.
We need to learn to relate and communicate with people at every phase of our lives and during the course of our duty in order to change the already spoilt image of our dear profession. Government or Nursing bodies cannot help us, we need individual input for this change to stand! Less talk and more action!
PS: I am a certified emotional intelligence coach and I have a special package for nurses at affordable prices (I have one on one and group package).
Adenike Oladimeji (RN, certified E.I coach).
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