Robin Hertel
Expand Your Boundaries of Influence

On occasion I have wondered whether my role as a nurse has had much of an impact. I realize that caring for a patient is important to the patient and their family, but I felt like I needed to have a larger, more encompassing impact. This was actually one of the reasons I went into education and why I began my service as a volunteer with AMSN. Perhaps you may have felt the same way at one time or another.

When I was making resolutions and goals for this year, I decided that one of my goals was to stretch myself and venture outside of my comfort zone more often. This promotes continued growth and prevents boredom and stagnation. Channeling restlessness or a desire to do something different in a way that will make a positive impact is truly a goal worthy of 2020.

As I enter into my last year as service as the president of AMSN, I wanted to provide encouragement to others to seek out ways to stretch themselves and expand their boundaries of influence. Few things are more satisfying than service to others. What’s even better is there are so many ways this can be done!

You may want to consider volunteering at a local senior center to provide blood pressure checks and teaching about heart healthy living. If you enjoy social media, actively engage in platforms and promote the profession of nursing. And be sure to look for calls for volunteers from AMSN or check out the website for opportunities!

Another way to make a positive impact is to serve on a board or volunteer for an organization or in your own community. As the largest sector of health care providers who provide services for patients and their families at the point of care, we bring a unique perspective to the table. Nursing has long been considered the most trusted profession in the US and we have a wide knowledge-base regarding health care systems, patient and community needs, and barriers to accessing care. We have advanced communication skills in multiple situations in addition to critical thinking skills and the ability to use measurement and outcome data when making decisions. What organizations wouldn’t benefit from having a nurse on board?

I can tell you that in my experience, few things have been as rewarding as my service as a volunteer with AMSN. I have learned more and met more wonderful members and national leaders than I ever would have expected. I have become better at my job because of the unique leadership opportunities I’ve been fortunate enough to take advantage of. I have made lasting friendships that include not only other nurses, but also influencers in the legislative arena, in corporate America, and internationally. I never could have dreamed that service could be this rewarding.

Nurses have the opportunity to serve in local, state, and national offices as well as a wide variety of public and private corporations. The list is really limited only by your imagination. What are you passionate about? How can you expand your boundaries of influence as a nurse?

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