Knowing my strengths – Going to College
Self-determination is the ability to choose without coercion. It is required to meet an individual's basic needs for autonomy, competence and relatedness (Deci and Ryan 1985). These are critical strengths that define professional nursing practice (Scott et al. 1999).
Knowing my strengths What do you think
Among the attributes of a best-run business and a magnet hospital are respecting and valuing the individual, treating people with dignity and providing positive feedback about what they are doing best and how to do better (Upenieks 2003). Furthermore, in order to treat nurses in this manner, leaders must have the skills to recognize, uncover and discover strengths, and then to mobilize and capitalize on them. It is also equally important to understand one person's weaknesses or limitations in order to supplement or compensate with another person's strengths. Leaders also understand the importance of not only celebrating successes but the value of learning from mistakes as a way to develop strengths (Davey et al. 2009; Tourangeau et al. 2010).
Strengths-Based Nursing Leadership focuses on "goodness of fit" or "person–position fit." This happens when nurse leaders create opportunities that best utilize those strengths for the task at hand. It occurs when leaders place nurses in positions or create positions that align with the nurse's passions and skills, as well as give them the opportunities, support and resources to perform at their best and to realize their potential. This happens when strengths are intentionally targeted and utilized (Traynor et al. 2010). Thus, the best human resource policy is to match the person to positions that bring forth his or her strengths.
They want to know what you think of yourself
The strengths-based approach is about expanding the imaginary horizons of the nurse at the bedside, nurse managers and nurse leaders. It requires a new set of values that allow for innovative solutions to long-standing problems. It requires a new imagining of the world that considers strengths – what is best, what is working and what has potential. It requires a shift in focus from health professional-assessed outcomes to client outcomes. In the current problem-based model, the most important outcomes are patient satisfaction and rates of mortality and morbidity (Wong and Cummings 2007). Strengths-based outcomes are concerned with the human spirit and the whole person and would enlarge the spotlight to include health, healing, quality of life and subjective well-being.
Part 3: I know my strengths, now what? How do I …
If there is to be a transformation that puts people and communities at the centre of healthcare, we need to move to a new approach to practice and to nursing leadership. There is a growing body of literature that such an approach needs to address the importance of inter-professional practice (Gilbert et al. 2010; McKay and Crippen 2008). Within this context, we also need to consider a new approach to nursing leadership that will support a more comprehensive nursing role that will fulfill nursing's mandate to the health of society. One such approach to nursing practice is called Strengths-Based Nursing Care (SBC) (Gottlieb 2012). This approach also complements an inter-professional practice approach. Both focus on the holistic, complex health needs of people and empower them to take charge of their health and healthcare decisions.
Martin Seligman named a set of 24 Signature Strengths
Sometimes your strengths may be covered up by a disability that is not accommodated. For example, a person may have difficulty spelling and think they can’t write a creative story. Or an individual has difficulty with reading so they think they cannot learn a subject like history. By using technology or accommodations such as spell checker, speech-to-text software or books on CD, students may discover that they actually have strengths in these areas.
identified 34 key signature themes of strength
Strengths-Based Nursing Care and Strengths-Based Nursing Leadership are not completely new concepts. In fact, the foundations of modern nursing are rooted in strengths-based thinking. Upon reflecting on Florence Nightingale's approach to nursing and what made her a visionary, we see elements of a "strengths-based approach" in her thinking and in her solutions to long-standing problems. We just have to consider Nightingale's most famous quotation, in which she sets down the role of nursing "to put the patient in the best condition for nature to act upon him" (Nightingale 1860: 133). To fulfill this mandate, nurses require knowledge of people's innate healing mechanisms, i.e., biological and psycho-social strengths, as well as knowledge of how to create environments to enable them to heal. In tackling problems of public health, Nightingale used a strengths-based approach based on knowledge of people, their environments and the political and social structures to create policy (Dossey et al. 2005). Over the years, nursing got sidetracked from Nightingale's vision. SBC is a way to help nursing regain its foothold in the healthcare system, to move it forward and steer both nursing and the healthcare system in a new direction.