Happy new year to you if you are reading this. It is a beautiful and brand new year, and each days of the year should be carefully treated with both caution and deliberation if we must achieve our goals after 365days.
I have always said Nursing is more of a constant job but not any more, nursing is evolutionary, because nurses do the same thing everyday, forever: every day at work you care for a patient, you administer care, you sympathize and empathize with your patients. The act of nursing is constant, it never changes, it was so in the days of Nightingale, it will remain so after this generation. Nonetheless, the methods, process of care keeps evolving. Several units of nursing are getting birthed, different measures to keep nurses aligned with the profession.
It is a new year and everything should be new, a new mindset, new goals, new plan and possibly a new career plan.
Career plan is a practical and realistic strategy that helps you determine your skills and interest, it also helps you set career goals, put them into actions through various guidelines.
If you must achieve your goals as a health care provider this year, you will need to have your career plan.
What do you need to do?
First consider your interests and educational goals.
Do you intend being a mental health nurse?
Have you considered knowing the various schools in the country offering a post basic course on psychiatric nursing and possibly how much they cost?
To start with:
1. Set a SMART goals
I know a lot of nurses would have a new year resolution which revolves around the job, ranging from team work, to attitudes towards patients, to commitment to the work and success in career.
No matter what your goal is, you need it to be SMART
– Specific: Don’t go about the wards in scrub with the mindset of you wanting to have several certifications this year, or you want to attend every conference that is tagged “nurses conference”. You need to know what you want.
Ask yourself the following questions?
What do I need?
What do I need at the unit I work?
Knowing what you need will not only help you achieve your goals, it will also prevents you from confusion.
– Measurable: Can you measure what you want?
Can you make up your mind that you will attend conference worth #100,000 for this year. You can probably break down the money into smaller amount, which means you can attend 6 conferences with #100,000 depending on the theme and location.
– Achievable: This is mainly for young nurses, you intend having your own organization, promotion or honours as a nurse.
It is beautiful to have great desires no doubt, you need to know what you want and also find out if it is achievable.
If you need to have a ALS/BLS certificate before March this year, it is very much achievable.
If you want a license in orthopedic nursing before the year runs out even though you have not purchased the form, that is so much unrealistic and unachievable.
– Realistic: How realistic are your goals?
Do you aim at working with an international organization?
Is it realistic this year?
What about in two years to come?
You desire to attend a particular boot camp for nurses in March this year and it is #55,000 for ticket, aside from accomodation and other expenses and you earn #30,000 monthly.
Setting a goal of getting the #55,000 in two months should be your plan.
If you spend #5000 on transport fare, pay your kids school fees and you are only left with #10,000 after your expenses, attending a conference that worths #55,000 might be unrealistic.
– Time bound: This is as important as every other point mentioned.
How much time do you have left?
How much time are you willing to commit to this goals?
It is easy to make rules, and break rules, but is always difficult to keep the rules. It is very much easy to enroll in courses whether online or physical, but it is more difficult to learn and commit time to the course.
You have to be committed this year.
If you intend been a better nurse to your patients, you want to be more passionate. You need commitment to do that.
3. Short term goals
Set short term goals, this makes the journey looks better and easier.
4. Time management
The key to achieving your goals is time management. Do you intend enrolling in post basic courses this year?
You need to learn to manage your time effectively.
5. Work on your team spirit
Truth be told, some nurses do not have a good team spirit. They love to do things alone, which is wrong and can put your patients at risk.
Nursing is a team work.
If you are not into team work with your patients, you are likely to lag behind in your career plan. A good team member realizes that you are writing an exam and does some things to help you feel relieved.
If you want to enjoy the benefits of good team spirit in 2019, then you need to be a good team member likewise.
6. Self assessment
Be determined to asess your goals either quarterly, bi monthly or bi annually.
Self assessment helps you stay on the track, and also helps you discover yourself
Summary is to make goals that can be achieved this year, I believe in simple, short and specific goals. They are the 3S behind my work. This year keep it simple, keep it short: not too much grammar or dreams, keep it specific.
I hope you got value?