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Time to take care of ourselves - it's in everyone's best interest

Marilyn Eveleigh
Consultant Editor

Professionally, the pace of health has changed - patient demands, employer expectations and new clinical information can seem overwhelming. And then someone adds to my load by informing me with a bright smile that I can satisfy all this "really easily" if I use technology and log onto www.allyourproblemssolved.com! But as I still need the time to access a computer (and some nurses report that their work computer is at a base some miles away) and the IT skills to find my way around, it certainly does not lighten the load. In fact it can make me feel more inadequate and demoralised.

My remedy is to give yourself some breathing time and step out of the practice setting. Try to find protected time to read the journals, discuss issues with colleagues, identify the key messages of specialists in your field, and formulate some small changes to your work that will make big differences. Knowing about the changing world you work in will lift your spirits - even if you can't make major changes right now. Above all, don't feel guilty. Feeling good and confident makes you a better nurse. That's in everyone's best interest - especially your patients.

NiP attempts to provide the sort of background you need to successfully practise in primary care - wide coverage of lots of clinical and policy issues. And if the only time you have to read is in the bath, then the glossy pages are more robust!
 
In addition, the NiP regional two-day Events offer nurses some time out of practice to fulfil all the factors that will let you personally recuperate and professionally grow. The first, which took place in London in September, was a great success. A range of eminent speakers entered into full and frank discussions with the delegates. The pharmaceutical and equipment companies displayed their products and offered practical and generous support and bags full of free resources to use in practice. And there were clinical workshops where delegates could listen and question the key leaders in the field. Read all about it on pages 12-19.

Future events are planned, and as they are completely free to attend there is no excuse not to be released, especially as you are required to maintain your continual professional development. Being in any such environment is very stimulating - you meet those who make you realise that you are doing a great job because they are attempting to get where you are, and you meet others who have already done what you want to do and whose experience you can use to move on. The evaluations from London attendees were overwhelmingly positive - there really was something for everyone.
 
We at NiP are delighted and want to spread the word with our readers. So do pass the message to all those nurses you know. The next conference dates are:

  • Birmingham  27-28 Oct 2003
  • Manchester  10-11 Feb 2004
  • Edinburgh  31 Mar - 1 Apr 2004

Details of the free seminar programmes can be viewed online (www.nipevents.com) or you can call 020 7214 0543. Be good to yourself - book your place now. See you there.