Date of Award

2016

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Department

Nursing

Abstract

The nurse-patient relationship encompasses the richness of being in a relationship with another human being. When viewed through a healthcare lens a patient's health, illness, and healing are often defined by procedural testing, diagnosis, and a plan for treatment. Within the community of professional nurses, it is known that healing involves more than an attempt to physically repair the human body. The use of nursing theory, caring science, and recognition of the patient in their wholeness guides nursing practice. Nurses incorporate the use of experiential wisdom (metis) in caring for the life force of another human being in the effort to restore the patient's wholeness. During caring moments nurses have the ability to touch the patient's soul so the individual can heal physically, emotionally, and spiritually. The profession of a nurse is physically, emotionally, and spiritually challenging. As a profession, there is a profound personal and professional responsibility to care for oneself before extending care to another human being. Nurses must care for their own souls so that nursing can reclaim the historic sacredness as nurse healers. The capacity for intentional caring is magnified when integrated with the use of healing rituals and ceremonies as self-care strategies and synthesized with caring, environment, and integral nursing theory.

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