Burns and Grove (2000) explain that, "philosophical analysis investigates meaning as well as build theories of meaning" some philosophers have taken a common stand in development of a concise philosophy of the practice by establishing commonality of nurse, patient, health and environment. A strong philosophical background will result in theories that are pertinent to the practice. However, every nurse should have a philosophy that is influenced by experience and future prospects. This should focus on ones definition, values and objectives of the practice.
Current Definition of Nursing
Human beings have needs and this needs increase in times of sickness and pain. Nursing not only takes care of these needs, but compassion and comfort (Budzban, 2011). Nursing is all about the patient. The author's definition of nursing addresses two issues: care and environment of nursing. First, the author defines nursing as caring and compassion provided in an environment that facilitate healing. This can be provided at any location and delivered by any person with the ability to show compassion and support to another human being. Nurses should use all their qualities and resources in provision of high quality service. Nightingale asserts that human needs are constantly present.
"the symptoms or the sufferings generally considered to be inevitable and incident of the disease at all, but of something quite different -- of the want of fresh air, or of light, or of warmth, or of quiet, or of cleanliness, or of punctuality and care in the administration of diet" (Nightingale, 1969, p. 8).
Second, healthcare work environment can be fast paced and busy comprising of people from different backgrounds. It is a place where all people have a common interest, but can also be a challenging environment. Nurses have to interact not only with patients but also co- workers, physicians and family members of the patients. It is essential for one to exercise patience is in this kind of environment. Taking care of the patient's needs is establishing grounds for good communication with other professionals in the work environment as well as those close to the patient. The environment should portray a team attitude with caring highlighted as a team approach. One must be ready to put in extra working hours when the need arises, this calls for tolerance and patience for the benefit of the patients. According to Wood (2003), one can work with a bossy doctor, patient or a rude family member of the patient and lead anxiety and loss of patience, but one should consider this as an opportunity for growth rather than a barrier. The author believes that enforcing professionalism is one conduit that provides patients with the much-needed care. The work of a nurse is to give patients care by being supportive, consistent and convincing; it is difficult to achieve these without developing patience (Nettina, 2002).
Comparison of Past and Present Definitions
The fact is that the definition during undergraduate level, has continued to present a foundation for the current developments. In the past, the author expressed a desire of preserving health by attaining knowledge, while at present; the author regards the patient as the main subject of current definition, clearly showing growth and maturity in the field of nursing.
In the past, the author showed a desire of being available to all in need, a desire informed by the universal access to health care approach, a position that has not changed, but refined. At present, the author believes in establishing meaningful relationships by exercising patience and tolerance in the work place for better service delivery to the patients.
Personal and Professional Values
The author's personal value system has always been to be compassionate and honesty, which were developed in the socialization process. In nursing, compassion and honesty are instrumental in caring for patients. Patient's physical and emotional states are essential for total care. The author cites past experiences that support these values. One experience was while in nursing school. The author realized that after building rapport with the patients, there was honest communication, which translated into genuine relationships. Patients prefer those who are sincere and compassionate and are obligated to them. Interacting with someone on a spiritual level provides therapeutic grounds for promotion of trust thereby enhancing the healing process. Compassion and care are values that are applicable in any situation. It is important to show compassion for others, the world…