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Holistic nursing is the practice of nursing that cares for the patient as a whole through the integration of alternative healing practices and traditional medicine. Though incorporating alternative practices does not nullify the legitimacy of traditional medicine. Instead it serves to compliment, broaden, and enrich the scope of nursing practice and to help individuals reach their greatest healing potential. Applying holistic nursing in a clinical setting is about seeing a patient beyond their current illness. The patient is a person that has an entire life outside of the hospital. In order to be an effective holistic nurse it is important to inquire about the patient’s life. This includes feelings of anxiety, family connections, work history, religion, and any other viewpoints that may influence the patient’s healing. As nurses it is our job to put the patient in the best position to heal.

Subsequently, to put the patient in the best position to heal the nurse must be healed themselves to cause a positive change in the patient’s wellbeing. A change can be as little as being self-aware of one’s own energy. Humans are interconnected energy fields, so individuals must continually change to coexist. Due this interconnectivity it is beneficial that holistic nurses act in a way that promotes healing such as using alternative medicine in adjunct with modern medicine to individualize a patient’s treatment needs. Man is a unique entity, having its own particular unmistakable attributes that can’t be seen when you clump all individuals together.

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All in all if a holistic nurse has the knowledge of both art and science; the safer the nurse’s practice will be. From the science viewpoint, nursing is a sorted out collection of information particular to nursing, logics, and research. The art of nursing is the creative utilization of science to heal people. The holistic nurse exists to serve individuals. They care for patients based on the philosophy that nursing is an art and a science. This means that the primary purpose is to provide services that enable individuals, families, and communities to achieve their inherent wholeness. Holistic nursing is an example of a calling that takes care of “we” and glorifies the entire individual. These nurses must have the capacity to keep an eye on the patient and their families while paying attention to everything occurring in the here and now.

An example of a nurse that exhibited these skills is Florence Nightingale. She is recognized as being one of the first holistic nurses. She was known as “The Lady of the Lamp” because she brought comfort with her gentle smile to wounded soldiers. Offering a patient care with gentleness and compassion is pertinent so that healing can occur. As a nurse, she was efficient and thorough, but she also treated each patient as an individual, respecting their personal needs. Patience and kindness are two characteristics that are important to being a holistic nurse. Both will be clear through my practice and help me to develop my nursing skill. The passion for the calling of nursing will maintain all through my vocation as long as I stay focused and continue to learn new ideas and methods.

In conclusion, holistic nursing involves viewing the patient as more than an illness but as a person. This includes putting the patient in the best position to heal by maintaining a positive energy. Therefore as a nurse, I should be cognizant of my own mood and behavior. All nurses should treat individuals with dignity, but the holistic nurse shape a bond that extends to the affected person’s family and friends to ease the stress that comes with illness. Holistic nursing’s concentration on the individual gives a more inviting view of healthcare that works coincides with conventional healthcare.

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