Self-Analysis Research Papers Example
Self-analysis is an important aspect of human service delivery. When people know the qualities that define them, they can more effectively use the best qualities to provide service to others. As such, I can improve the welfare of people in the society by seeking to have a reasonably good understanding of myself; that is, personal. In the same line, two major identities that greatly influence the effectiveness of service to humanity in my profession as a White American nurse from a strong Christian family are compassion and spirituality.
Understanding Compassion, its Values, and Assumptions
The Department of Health defines compassion as the ability to respond to people’s pain, distress, anxiety or need with kindness (Straughair, 2012). Truly compassionate nursing care respects individual dignity and is based on skill, competency, and value provision. Its delivery calls for the maximum possible levels of skills and professionalism. The concept of compassion has been identified in the existing professional literature as a vital and indispensable element of professional nursing practice (Straughair, 2012). Understanding the true definition of compassion is rather complex because of its subjective nature. Compassion assumes that nurses can see beyond the needs of the patient by understanding his or her own self first (Straughair, 2012). So as to make sure that I can provide patients with high-quality compassionate care, it is important that I obtain the support of organizational executives and managers in terms of skill mix and workload.
Understanding Spirituality, its Values, and Assumptions
Spirituality is a concept that is personal and varies between nursing practitioners. In spite of spirituality being a vital component of patient care, it is extremely challenging to address peoples’ needs in this area. Even though many nurses seem to be aware of their spirituality, a lack of succinct definitions and appropriate guidance indicates that they are often not sure about how they can apply it in their workplace (Sartori, 2010). The phrase “spirituality” is usually attributed to religious beliefs and, though they can interlink and overlap, the two have different meanings (Sartori, 2010).
An individual may be extremely spiritual but lack affiliation with any specific religion. Spirituality is guided by the need to give purpose to life and build relationships with the abstract world and can be articulated in several ways comprising family, community, music, nature, art or nature (Sartori, 2010). Spiritual practices may include such things as deep meditation or doing voluntary work in the local community. In order to assess the spiritual condition of an individual, it essential to define spirituality clearly. Otherwise, holistic healing will fail to take place. When defining the concept of spirituality in nursing, the following assumptions hold: spirituality is independent of religion; spirituality gives people meaning and purpose in life, in addition to connecting them with the abstract world; spirituality is based on personal value systems; and spirituality is metaphysical.
Similarities between Compassion and Spirituality
In essence, compassion is an attribute that is often driven by the principle of beneficence; need to do good for people. For instance, out of compassion, I gave a sedative to help a young child that had been brought to the hospital screaming in pain after breaking her arm in a fatal road accident to help the child relax as I rushed to inform the doctor that we had just received an emergency situation in the hospital. In a similar fashion, using my Christian faith, I provide spiritual care, which involves assisting those who are in need of my assistance wholeheartedly.
Differences between Compassion and Spirituality
Compassion is a concept that is innate in one’s nature as a human being. It is a quality that often comes about devoid of any indoctrination as it is viewed as the automatically-triggered need to respond to the distress of others. As such, compassion is often observed when individuals encounter circumstances whereby they have to act instantaneously to alleviate the suffering of people in their care. On the other hand, spirituality depends to a large extent on the religious background of an individual since the spirituality of an individual is inextricably linked to the religious beliefs and practices that they follow. In addition, spirituality is considered to be an identity that can exist outside the realms of the real world.
Reconciling the differences between Compassion and Spirituality
In order to reconcile the above-stated differences between compassion and spirituality, it is important to institute the concept of role modeling for nursing practitioners so that they can be taught how to manage conflicting personal identities more effectively.
Strengths of Compassion
Compassion is fundamental to nursing practice as it continues to be the underpinning philosophy that cuts across the moral codes, standards, and value statements that guide nursing practice today. Therefore, compassion remains an indispensable part of nursing care.
Weaknesses of Compassion
The scope of compassion is limitless, and it is highly subjective as a matter of fact. Thus, many of the times, it is almost impossible to determine if a nursing practitioner has acted in a manner appropriate for proper service delivery. In some cases, excessive feelings of compassion can compromise the principles and values that guide the actions of nursing practitioners. For example, excessive compassion can cause me to provide care preferential treatment to certain groups of patients who are my friends. This will undermine the core principle of justice in nursing practice.
Strengths of Spirituality
Spirituality allows people to live for a purpose and enjoy peace leading to improved results. When spiritual beliefs are deeply engraved in religious beliefs that advocate justice for all people, then patients can be sure of obtaining equal access to care regardless of their social classes.
Weaknesses of Spirituality
In today's multicultural society, people have diverse faiths. Hence, spirituality is highly subjective and means different things to different people.
Application of Compassion and Spirituality to the Professional Nursing Environment
Compassion recognizes the need to deal with humanity’s suffering and quickly respond to relieve it. The feeling of compassion has contributed to my active advocating of continuous effort towards improving the quality of care for the high-risk group of people such as those people suffering from mental illnesses. I have started an awareness campaign to sensitize people that love, care, and affection is an important part of recovery for mentally ill patients.
Spiritual views can play an integral part in the process of the decision making the process even at the end of life. Many studies have found relationships spiritual beliefs and nursing practitioners' decisions about such issues as mechanical ventilation of pneumonia patients and cardiopulmonary resuscitation in case of patients with chronic illness. Hence, the dignity and sanctity of human life will be protected even in the after-life.
Sartori, P. (2010). Spirituality 1: Should spiritual and religious beliefs be part of patient care? Nursing Times, 106(28), 14-17. Retrieved from http://www.nursingtimes.net/Journals/2013/01/25/r/w/u/100720Practice-in-depth-Spirituality-1--should-spiritual-and-religious-beliefs-be-part-of-patient-care.pdf
Straughair, C. (2012). Exploring compassion: Implications for contemporary nursing. Part 2. British Journal of Nursing, 21(4), 239-244. Retrieved from http://planetreegrove.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Exploring-compassion.-Implications-for-contemporary-nursing-part-2.p
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