The Nurse as a Role Model for Health

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Guest post by Tamara Walker, R.N.

As a graduate nurse, fresh out of school and just starting my nursing career, I believed nurses were not only health promoters and educators, but should also serve as examples of healthy living. Unfortunately, it did not take long to discover that many of the nurses I worked with were not living up to my expectations of that role. Several were smokers, some were very overweight, and some drank on a regular basis. Although I was striving to be healthy in those areas, I struggled with my own non-healthy habits of sleep deprivation and poor stress management skills.

I was bothered by the dichotomy between what was being taught and what was being done by the nursing staff. There seemed to be a distinct aura of “do as I say, not as I do,” and as a new nurse, I felt that we, as nurses, should hold ourselves to a higher standard and strive harder to live out the healthy lifestyle choices we were teaching to our patients. However, not all nurses agree with this belief, and some feel it is unrealistic to hold nurses to this high standard. Continue reading “The Nurse as a Role Model for Health”

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