10 Principles All Great Nurses Follow By NurseTogether.com

10. Be true to your patients. Remember why you originally chose the profession of nursing? To help people. Be true to this goal and remind yourself everyday that you are there to provide the best patient care possible. This means not coming to work sick or calling off at the last minute. This means providing all care to the patients you are responsible for. There is no excuse for skipping care you may feel is non-essential and do not want to provide because you are tired or understaffed and need to rest. Be true to your patients at all times.

9. Be true to your profession. Represent the nursing profession well, both on the job and in the community. Being a nurse volunteer and join local organizations to help in your neighborhood. Keep current on your education requirements and job functions.

8. Be true to your peers. “Dumping” work on your peers or calling off late is not being true to your peers. You expect an honest day of work from them and they should count on the same from you. Treat your peers with respect and professionalism.

7. Be true to yourself. Nurses, know your limitations. You also need to know it really is fine to use the word, “No.” If you find yourself stressed out, do something about it and do not lose yourself in the process of helping others.

6. When in doubt, ask. Great nurses are not afraid to admit they are confused or not sure of something. Great nurses, for the protection of their patients, are always willing to ask questions and get clarification.

5. Great nurses laugh at themselves. Nurses are able to see the nursing humor in everyday events and are not afraid to acknowledge their shortcomings!

4. Take time for family and friends. Great nurses understand the importance of a work/life balance. This includes ample time for your family and friends. It does not help to work overtime for months at a time to save money for the dream vacation and then spend the entire time you are on vacation in bed with mono!

3. When tired, great nurses will not pick up those extra shifts. This goes along with being true to yourself, but great nurses know their limitations and do not take on extra hours if they are not comfortable with it for the safety of their patients and their personal health.

2. Great nurses are proud leaders and mentors. Please do not eat our young! Be a leader to the new nurses or the inexperienced nurses on your floor. Teach them and help them to excel. Both the profession and your organization will benefit immensely when you share your talent in this way.

1. Be true. Ethics are my pet peeve. Great nurses uphold honesty all the time. Be honest in everything you do. You are human and when you make an error, admit it. Integrity, once lost, is almost impossible to get back.

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