A home care nurse recently said to me, “I didn’t realize how important it was to say a formal good-bye to my patients when they were leaving service until one of them contacted me and told me how upset she was that I didn’t.” The nurse added, “I really didn’t think we (meaning nurses) mean that much individually to patients. I know they need the service but didn’t think they really cared who delivered it.” I was startled to hear her say that, believing she personally had so little impact and value. When you undervalue your personal contribution and role, and see yourself simply as a “service provider” you have lost sight of the true nature of your work and your own humanness in the process.
Likewsie, If a patient or family member compliments you on the excellent care you provide or how helpful you are, say, “Thank you. I appreciate your saying so,” rather than diminishing the person’s perspective and your own value by saying, “That’s just my job” or “That’s what I get paid for.” The latter response makes it sounds like you don’t really care but are simply providing a service in exchange for wages. If that’s how you really feel, it may be time to make a change.
©Donna Cardillo. All rights reserved.
1 thought on “Are you just a service provider?”
I completely agree with this article! Plus I have found during my 22 plus years as an RN that elderly people don’t get stimulated with enough touching of hands, arms, hugs. Just like a baby, without this very necessary and important factor in life, failure to thrive can be a definite problem. Love, compassion, and a smile goes a very long way. And I truly believe that treatment of various patients, whether young, old, rich, poor, a criminal, or a millionaire should receive the absolute very same attention, kindness, and care. Who knows, you could make a difference and change a person’s life direction!
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