Angela Nelson, BSN, RN PHN, is one of our community Life Care Managers caring for seniors in their home. Nearly 35 years into her nursing care, she considers this role the ‘frosting on my career.’ She explains what this means in a recent interview with Elizabeth Scala, MSN/MBA, RN, host of ‘Your Next Shift’ a podcast that focuses on inspiring the ‘whole spectrum of nursing.’
The trajectory of Angela’s nursing career wasn’t always in senior care, it began in hospital nursing – ICU, neurology and cardiac, to a Medicare home care nurse role, 13 years as a discharge nurse liaison with a major hospital and before joining Lifespark, as a director of an assisted living. “My nursing career evolved with my life,” said Angela. “Each job took on new challenges that prepared me for my next role.”
Her biggest advice to other nurses is you don’t have to stay in one area of nursing – follow what sparks you. Born a ‘caretaker’ Angela’s love for nursing has ebbed and flowed over the years with powerful learning experiences along the way. One she shares in the podcast where she was ‘burnt out’ from a job and company whose expectations took too much out of her and she became mentally and physically sick from the job. “I realized their values weren’t in line with my own,” said Angela.
Angela also explains how being your authentic self is the most critical thing you can bring to your nursing profession. “When I’m real, my clients and those I work with feel it,” said Angela. “I enjoy nursing most when I’m being myself. I’d love to go back to the beginning of my nursing career and tell myself – don’t be the kind of nurse you think is expected of you in the nursing profession – just be you.” This philosophy has shaped the kind of nurse Angela is today and her clients tell the story of why her holistic, whole person approach to senior care has made a tremendous impact on them personally.
To hear more about Angela’s nursing career, listen to the podcast and take pause on your own nursing career. Remember, if you don’t enjoy what you’re doing take Angela’s advice and evolve within your career and take on some new challenges to spark your love for nursing.
We’d love to hear about your nursing career – Share On!