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Holistic Nurse Self-Reflective Assessment

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Holistic nursing to me is a practice of applying both subjective and objective patient assessment into the plan of care. Not only do we need to look at the physical condition of the patient, but also their social and environmental factors that influence their state of health. When this application process is incorporated into the patient plan of care, we are incorporating all aspects of the patient’s life that help define and create their ideal state of health. In review of several nursing theories discussed by Montgomery-Dossey and Keegan (2012), which incorporate the aspect of holistic nursing practice, I found that Jean Watson’s Theory of Transpersonal Caring was most closely linked to aspects of my current nursing practice.
Theory
Jean Watson looks at holistic nursing as an aspect of viewing each patient individually, and believes that “…the whole is greater than, and different from the, the sum of the parts” (Montgomery-Dossey & Keegan, 2013, p. 122). In further explanation, she feels that health is very much a subjective state that can disrupt one’s self harmony, and that one’s personal environment includes the social, cultural, environmental, and spiritual influences that provide the care needed to restore this harmony. In further, the nurses responsibility in restoring this harmony, involves creating an intimate, caring relationship with the patient to help identify subjective influences that help a patient restore their health and well-being. And, to truly understand and identify with patients, Watson also feels that we as nurses must understand and recognize our own environmental factors that influence our own health and well-being.
One of Watson’s ideas that personally help guide and influence my life and nursing...

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...ly normative, but dynamic, pervasive, and individual” (p. 464). When I realized this, I realized that I had a purpose in this aspect of patient care.
In closing, understanding that caring for patients encompasses the body, mind, spirit and environment is a crucial part of applying holistic practice in nursing. Helping a patient recover and return to their highest level of health in all of these aspects is an important aspect of nursing for me. When I think of holistic nursing, I think of the term humanity. Being able to treat each individual for the human being they are, helping them understand what in their own environment helps define health, and helping them to achieve that is what nursing means to me.

Works Cited

Montgomery-Dossey, B., & Keegan, L. (2013). Holistic nursing: A handbook for practice (6th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
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