Updated: Nov 5, 2019
No no, we’re not over going out of our comfort zone. This is just an homage to the opportunity to pull out of it every now and then. To a safe space where there’s no challenge, just reflection on challenges past. Constantly challenging yourself is hard work, and some time to recover is essential. The cabin is such a perfect place for that, and I feel so lucky that I am able to retreat to this place - especially with these guys.
The last month I’ve been out of my comfort zone continuously, as I started working on a new unit at work. From here on I´ll be going back and forth between the two units - an awesome opportunity for me to evolve and expand my comfort zone.
So exciting! And so terrifying at the same time!
Everything around me seems new, even though this is a unit I’ve been working closely with for years. Everyday procedures that normally don’t require much attention suddenly require much more because of seemingly insignificant details like where the equipment can be found. The patients I work with are undergoing the same challenges that I’m used to, I’m just seeing them in a different stage. My understanding of the journey each patient is on is greater now, and I look forward to using my new knowledge in familiar surroundings. You know how you can listen to a song for a thousand times and suddenly find new meaning in the lyrics, because you experienced something that made you see things in a new light? I´ve had that feeling a lot lately!
Wait, what’s that on your pants lady?
You know you’re a nurse when you feel relief that the wet, sticky, smelly something you find on your uniform is fish in tomato sauce. It could be so much worse! What’s the worst thing you’ve found on your uniform?
Not to mention all the new procedures that I’ve had to master. Learning new things gets me eager and a new procedure can be compared to getting a new gadget. My curiosity gets me into trouble at times, as I keep thinking “I wonder what happens if...” only the gadget I’m playing with is someone’s blood and now suddenly it’s sprayed all over the wall and I’ve given myself tons of extra work.
Speaking of mastery. A friend, Jennifer, reminded me to put emphasis on the term “practice” instead. We practice nursing the same way medicine is practiced, not mastered. It might seem like an insignificant detail, but the phrases we use can carry a heavy influence on the way we assess our effort at the end of the day. Part of what makes nursing so exciting is that 1+2 doesn’t always equal 3. There’s always another option to be considered as at least one of the walls in the house of cards that is their body is either ripped apart, missing or infected with something. That’s why they’re in the hospital in the first place, right? Thanks, Jennifer! I’ll be continuing to practice, watching my patient for clues as to what’s going on in his body, while studying the look on his eyes hoping to catch a glimpse of what’s going on in his mind. If my first attempt to put that body and mind at peace fails to succeed, I´ll know to keep practicing.
And now to put my own mind at peace and enjoy the stillness and the comfort of nature! Somehow I feel like a puzzle with all the pieces flying about when I’m not in nature. When I’m back, all the pieces seem to find their way back to the right spot. I come back to busy streets and complex challenges more focused and flexible. Ready to take on new challenges.