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Nursing students – the glass is half full! January 30, 2012
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Joe Niemczura RN, MS About the Author
Joe Niemczura RN, MS

Please subscribe. Go to my blog, and click the button on the right.

And why not buy my book? I have been in some difficult patient care situations in my career, but I have found ways to cope. My book may not help you get a nursing job, but maybe it will help you get perspective on what is important in life.

To get a nursing job, be an optimist

Sometimes if you are being discouraged, the person interviewing you picks up on that vibe. There is an old saying that goes ”hire for attitude, train for skills” – and it’s true – showing some enthusiasm and engagement wins every time.

Selling Hope

My brother recently sent me a quote from the Optimist’s Society, which I will get to in just a bit. I have always thought that one of the most important things a nurse can do for a patient is to offer the hope of a better future. This can be done by looking the patient in the eye and saying one of the two possible things:

“we can get through this”


“It doesn’t have to be this way. we can work together to make things better.”

each of these can be magic, especially if they are backed up with a plan. Frankly, to say a small prayer for yourself will often help the process along – I am happy to report that when my prayer life improved, my nursing care in difficult or challenging situations also improved.

Marie Manthey

There are nurses who have spent a lot of time working on how to offer hope and to be the kind of nurse people look up to. The most notable is probably Marie Manthey.  She has a WordPress Blog, too!  If you have ever been in a work setting where nobody helped each other and everybody seemed to have a chip on their shoulder, you probably wondered what it took to turn things around. Ms. Manthey was one of those persons who identified the results of poor work culture and developed tools to create an environment where nurses supported each other and apositive attitude turned things around. Bravo!

“Thank You”

This is a phrase I use a lot. Once when I changed jobs, at the new job I made sure to thank each of my coworkers at the end of the day. I literally said “Thank you for today. we did a good job, together.” At first they thought I had two heads. Then, tentatively, they started doing it too. And we could build from there. Work does not have to be grim all the time. You can start with a few small steps. Things like learning the names of the custodial staff at your workplace. and using the names. When somebody in a work group starts with an attitude of gratitude, magic happens.


any way, the Optimists Creed is the thought of the day.

Promise Yourself -

 To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.

 To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.

 To think only of the best, to work only for the best and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.

 To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.

 To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

Imagine what your workplace would be like if this was the way everyone contributed.

Joe Niemczura
Joe Niemczura has been an RN for 32 years, split evenly between adult critical care and teaching. He is the author of the book “The Hospital at the End of the World.”

The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.
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