12 in ’12: What a Difference a Year Makes

If 2011 was somewhat of a cluster, 2012 was an incredible journey. I started the year wondering where exactly I belonged in nursing and slogging through my final semester of grad school, and ended it living 3,000 miles away and going back into an acute care setting. Who knew?

As is tradition, it’s time to look back at the goals I set for myself and for this blog…

 4 Goals for the Blog

  1. Find ways to turn this from a hobby into part of my profession. Meh. This was hit-or-miss. I spent a lot of time and energy at the beginning of the year coming up with new ideas. As fun as these ideas were to develop, none of them have generated the level of conversation I was hoping for. As I’ve focused my energy on developing my clinical nursing skills these past few months, the blog has unfortunately become more of an afterthought. Part of it is due to physical exhaustion as I readjust to night shift, but I think a lot of it is related to a sense of discouragement about a reduction in community-building within the nursing blogosphere.
  2. Launch new forums to deepen our conversations with one another. See above. I launched a lot of new ideas in 2012 – from The Holistic Nurse to the book club to the “Going Global” mini-series. Despite the lack of feedback, they have been really fun to work on.  So I’d say I met this goal in spades and had a great time doing it!
  3. Continue the deliberation process about going public. Done. Sort of. Part of me wonders if my less frequent blogging this fall is correlated with my decision to be more “open” about who I am and what I do (and where I am). Maybe I’m nervous about privacy violations (mine and my patients’). I don’t regret sharing more, but I’m still trying to strike a good balance.
  4. Learn more about the technical side of blogging. I can only shrug. I had the best of intentions. Even signed up for the CodeAcademy program, with grand illusions that I’d be writing fluent HTML in just a few short months. Oh, Nurse Teeny, you are an overachiever. 

4 Professional Goals

  1. Graduate. Done. Thank God. But then again, I’m already preparing for the next round of school. Insanity.
  2. Move on. Boy did I! I never in a million years would have anticipated just how far I moved. I’m now on the opposite side of the country. And back in hospital nursing to boot. It was time for a fresh start, apparently.
  3. Explore opportunities to publish. My first article was published in August. I didn’t announce that here because I was still debating Blog Goal #3 above. My writing has slowed down since school finished, but that should change in 2013 (fingers crossed)!
  4. Grow – wherever I am.  I came a realization this year that there were skills I needed to feel more confident about. And I needed to build those skills at the bedside. And that it was important to stretch myself and not get too comfortable and overconfident in one place. And I’m growing every day. My Master’s degree is certainly coming in handy as I investigate opportunities for professional growth in my workplace (clinical ladder, certifications, etc.) But I’ve been humbled and challenged over and over again these past few months, and I am so thankful for what I have learned.  

 4 Personal Goals

  1. Take care of me. An ongoing project, to say the least. And night shift has added a new twist to the challenge. 
  2. Grow my marriage. S and I have been through a lot already in our young marriage. And we’ve come out stronger and more sure of our love for each other. I can’t even believe how lucky I am. Even on the days when we drive each other crazy. 😉
  3. Grow my writing. Until recently I was posting quite frequently. I’ve been published in a professional nursing journal. I’ve contributed to other blogs. I’d say this was a good year for the writing elves.
  4. Grow my family. So this is on hold for now. There are a lot of reasons for it. But we’ll hopefully pick up this goal in a few years, if all goes well. More later…

So there you have it. My year of moving forward involved graduating with my Master’s degree, living in wine country, moving 3,000 miles and starting a new, terrifying job. I’d say it was quite a full 12 months!

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