Nurses Need Encouragement

by Angela Brooks


I hear it weekly if not daily how a nurse is struggling to deal with her shift and the stress that comes with it, then at the end of a quarter or the year her supervisor wants to give an evaluation right in the middle of a hell shift. In nursing as you are working with people there will be drama, unpredictable behaviors and last minute decisions.  

As the end of this year is coming quickly to an end it is time for evaluations from a supervisor who normally do not work with you on your shifts – who will be giving you their opinion of the job you do. Listening to someone’s opinion of your work performance or reading it from a paper that will be filed away with your name attached on it can be hard to swallow, especially if you do not agree.

What so many supervisors are not seeing is Patients need attention, doctors need assistance, the front desk needs records filled out-and you need a break. The day can be more than a little hectic and can become quiet emotional if pulled in too many directions all at one time.

If only I would record how many times a nurses says “if they only understood what all we do and still get it done” or “If I could just get a break without worrying what I forgot to do” how about, “did I fill out all the papers I need to sign and fill them out correctly.”

In mental health as well as other hospitals have guide line of what needs to be done daily but when a client changes that schedule with acting out behavior everything doesn’t go on hold it just added more papers to the pile of what needs to be done by the end of the shift.

Nurses need to hear – You did a good job – I appreciate you – Thanks for working so hard in a difficult situation – Thank you for clocking in on time – Thank you for teaching the new staff and being an example. They don’t ask for banners to wave out front in public with their names in BOLD letters, the small thank you along the way can really make a difference.

When supervisors are giving evaluations it is helpful to find a positive before every negative written about the nurse’s performance. Not all nurses are top of the line when giving care but there will be something they do better than someone else. It is also normal for us as humans to hear the worse things written or said about us and not hear the other 9 things that were great.

Give your team co-workers a compliment every shift and let them know they are a good team member to work with. When times get busy remind them again – they need to hear it. As a nurse one of our greatest gifts is our compassion. The ability to care for others that enables us to give fully of who we are in our profession.

As you can be open about your own experiences you can begin to develop within your organization a positive culture that recognizes the impact of such stress on health professionals and better supports you to be all that you can be.

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Angela was voted 110th Leading Moms in Business , she is the author of “The Nurses Voice” she is also Silver Director for her achievement of being the first Young Living Distributor to build a solid Silver 2nd level Team Performance and over 20,000 in volume without using the phone. She is setting a model of how to build relationships online, through social media, blogging and email. Check out her website at

Angela Brooks is a retired nurse after 25 years in mental health. She used her lunch breaks to build her business part time on the night shift. Her car became a mobile university as she listened to business training, coaching calls on CD and phone webinars. She blogged while she was at her sons' baseball practices.

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