I used to crastinate. I did it so much I became a procrastinator!
Procrastination is the act of putting off or delaying what needs to be attended to. Are you avoiding making the assessment and diagnosis? Have you defined your Self care needs and are you procrastinating their implementation? You can apply our beautiful and effective nursing process or caring process to yourself.
So often it works as well for us as it does for our clients/patients.
I’ll bet you don’t waste time with your patients/clients before implementing the interventions that address the given diagnosis. So, what are your obstacles to implementing your own Self care?
Stop wishing start doing
5 aspects of procrastination can be overcome after they are recognized and accepted. Which one or ones sabotage your best efforts, and where in the process does it or they show up? The italicized slogans may be helpful to place where you can easily see them.
1. Overwhelm I know a nurse who has all the necessary qualifications and experience to set up her own APRN independent practice. She had not done so because she was overwhelmed with all the steps involved in finding a collaborating physician, insurance forms, and an office. When she broke the process into small pieces and tackled them one at a time, the overwhelm began to evaporate. She is now filling out the forms, found a collaborating physician and has found a nurse colleague to cheer her on.
“The person who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.”Confucius
2. Fear What if I fail? What if I succeed? Wired for comfort and predictability, each of us has our own risk tolerance. An attitude of seeing everything as a learning opportunity can be helpful since making change can often mean inviting the unknown and adjusting. You make the best plans and try to avoid or minimize negative outcomes. You are aware that certain risks persists because you are inviting the new and then move forward. When you understand your discomfort and what it is like to have healthy ways of managing uncomfortable feelings around change, you are set up for being able to deal with success or failure. After all, it is all about learning right?
It’s always impossible until it is done.
3. Low Self–worth. If you are not taking good care of yourself, you are not valuing yourself. When you begin caring for your Self, you are valuing yourself, your body, your mind and your emotions.
Your actions speak for you.
4. No accountability For years I knew I needed more sleep than I was getting. Initially I was under the delusion that I could catch up on missed sleep and believed that care of my family and showing up for my job was more important. I got up before everyone and went to bed long after everyone else. A couple of years ago, I was in a group of nurses where we were holding each other accountable for our Self care activities. I realized I had been not only lying to myself, but I was setting a poor example for my family, putting my health at risk, and sometimes I was even unsafe on the road. I changed the pattern and am now a much better example of how to provide safe care.
Another great example? A nurse colleague wanted to start running. Knowing she would not do it on her own, she set up a Facebook page inviting all of her friends and colleagues to join with their individual goals, and to report back to the group successes, challenges, failures and insights. She is now running regularly, and has created a loving and supportive community for herself.
Who or what are you waiting for?
5. Old habits. It is possible to change deeply ingrained habits. Some say it takes 21 days to break a habit. I suggest that it takes at least that long, and maybe even longer, and it is not possible to break a habit until you start.
If not now, when?
The Vitality in Progress: Healing and Preventing Burn out for Nurses supports nurses moving out of procrastination about Self care with mentoring and an accountability community. It is fully on line 1-2 hours a week. After 90 days with successful completion, s/he has not only changed habits but also earned 39 CNE’s.
If you are not ready for the VIP program above, maybe you would like to start with joining us on our free weekly Self Care for Vitality phone call.