Nursing has a rich history, and nurses have been around for thousands of years since the times of ancient Egypt. The practice of nursing has always been divided into two major fields: clinical nursing (which generally involves direct patient care) and theoretical nursing (which focuses on health promotion and disease prevention).
Nursing Quotes From Florence Nightingale
1 So never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning, however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard-seed germinates and roots itself.
“So never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning, however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard-seed germinates and roots itself.”
This quote captures the importance of starting small. It can be easy to get discouraged when you’re working on something new or difficult. It is important to keep going and not give up just because things aren’t perfect yet. If you are persistent and keep working at it, you’ll eventually see results!
2 How very little can be done under the spirit of fear.
The nurse is not a specialist. She has no better claim to be a specialist than does the doctor, and she is therefore hardly justified in considering herself as such. She must learn to do all things well and thoroughly, with that thoroughness which comes from understanding them; but her sphere of action being so wide—her duties so manifold—she is compelled to be an expert in many things rather than a master of one or two.
It is only through practice that we get our experience, and it is only through experience that we gain knowledge; but both of these are useless unless they are accompanied by clearness of judgment and soundness of mind. It has been said that there are three kinds of people who make excellent nurses: those who have had plenty of experience (these should never be dismissed); those who have had little experience (if they can find any fault at all with anything done by you); and those who have had no experience whatever (you will soon find out whether this kind really exists).
3 I attribute my success to this – I never gave or took an excuse.
Florence Nightingale was a registered nurse and the founder of modern nursing. While she is known for her work in the Crimean War, where she revolutionized battlefield medicine, Nightingale also wrote several books on the importance of hygiene and sanitation in hospitals. In one such book, Notes on Nursing: What it is, and what it is not (1859), Nightingale lays out her advice for how to run a hospital efficiently.
One of her most important pieces of advice for nurses is about excuses: “I attribute my success to this—I never gave or took an excuse.” In other words, if something goes wrong at work—whether it’s because you didn’t do something correctly or someone else made a mistake—don’t make excuses! Instead take responsibility and learn from your mistakes so that they won’t happen again in the future
4 It may seem a strange principle to enunciate as the very first requirement in a hospital that it should do the sick no harm.
It may seem a strange principle to enunciate as the very first requirement in a hospital that it should do the sick no harm.
It is not a new principle. It was recognized before the law of Moses, and it is included among his commandments. It is older than Hippocrates, for it was he who said: “The physician must be able to tell the antecedents, know the present, and foretell the future — must mediate these things, and have two special objects in view with regard to disease — namely, to do good or to do no harm.”
It may be said that this idea has been expressed in many ways throughout ages by men who have thought deeply upon things medical; but since we are speaking of Florence Nightingale’s work I will quote from her own writings as an example of her attitude towards this question:
5 Notes on Nursing: What it is, and what it is not (1859)
- It is not a profession.
- It is not a science.
- It is not an art.
- It is not a branch of medicine, for it has no distinctive subject; nor a branch of nursing, for it has no special technique; nor even a specialty, as the practice of nursing has become too liberalized to admit of such rigid specialization as that term implies.
6 The more experience one has, the more one learns to value good health.
The more experience one has, the more one learns to value good health.
Experience is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils.
7 Be mindful of your actions and how you treat others.
- Be mindful of your actions and how you treat others.
- Be mindful of what you say, and how you say it.
- Be mindful of how you treat your friends and family.
- Be mindful of how you treat your pets.
- Be mindful of how you treat your children.
The quotes above are just a few examples of the many wise words that Florence Nightingale left behind. Her work was groundbreaking and unparalleled in its time, but her legacy has only grown over the years. It’s up to us now to continue this legacy by remembering what she taught us about caring for others and treating them with compassion and respect—even when they don’t deserve it!