Historical Nurse Leader: Jean Watson
Nursing has changed dramatically throughout time. The modern changes in healthcare have directly affected nursing and many nurses have found the need to change their practice. In this paper, I discuss a strong nurse leader in the modern age: Jean Watson. She set a precedent for caring that many nurses follow today. Being knowledgeable of Watson’s caring theory and her dedication to human connection helps we, as nurses, care for patients on many different levels. Her theories remind us to care not just on the physical level, but also emotionally and spiritually as well. These aspects could be ignored because of the demands of evolving healthcare. The following paper discusses Jean Watsons’ education and experience, her impact on the nursing profession, and her leadership behaviors that led her to an influential nursing career.
Margaret Jean Harmon Watson was born in West Virginia, along the Appalachian Mountains, on June 10th, 1940. She was the youngest of eight children and was surrounded by an extended family communal environment (Jesse, 2010). Dr. Watson states that she is Protestant, although growing up Presbyterian. She explains her religious beliefs “However I am more inclined to honor the sacredness of all and unitary view that unites a shared world view of connectedness, beyond the physical Earth plane: honoring the reality of the world- we are all connected to a source- that which is greater than us, honoring diversity of beliefs” (J Watson, personal communication, January 18th, 2014). Her religious beliefs and ideals would later influence her nursing practice. She studied at the University of Colorado where she earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing and psychology. She continued her education and earned a Masters degree in psychiatric mental health nursing and a Ph.D. in educational psychology and counseling (“Nursing Theory”, 2013)....
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