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January 2017 Vol. 4 No. 1

In This Issue 

New Year, New You: Four Ways to a Better You and a Better Practice

by Donna Talain, RNC-OB, BSN, MBA

Happy New Year! It’s that time of year again. A time when we resolve to do things a little differently, to set goals, to make our lives and the lives of others a little better. No matter what 2016 brought, you have the opportunity now to make a fresh start. What resolutions have you made? Here are four things you can do to better yourself and your nursing practice.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness-based stress reduction has been shown to improve nurses’ ability to cope with stress, which leads to improving the quality of patient care (Smith, 2014). The key is mindfulness meditation. It begins with deliberate, conscious breathing, enjoying the gift of the moment with every breath. With enough practice, eventually you learn to mentally escape the limitations of your physical boundaries. Imagine being on a break and escaping the stress of your shift to a more relaxing place. Repetitive meditation has also been shown to physically alter parts of the brain to improve focus and attention (Lazar et al., 2005).


Originating in India thousands of years ago, yoga has become a popular health maintenance practice and therapeutic intervention for a wide range of physical and mental health conditions. According to a recent study, regular yoga can improve sleep quality which in turn reduces work stress in nurses (Ronghua & Xia, 2015). There are several forms of yoga out there, so find one that you enjoy and make it a regular part of your week.

Laugh More

Laughter is the best medicine, or so they say. According to Martin and Lefcourt (2004), laughter creates physiologic changes in the body which are conducive to health. Laughter may also help with moderating stress, enhancing your ability to cope. Besides, who couldn’t use a little more laughter in their lives?

Start or Maintain your AWHONN Membership

Finally, because this is all about improving your practice too, what better way than to use the evidence-based resources you have available. Your AWHONN membership puts hundreds of resources at your fingertips. AWHONN has once again decided to provide its Webinar series free to all its current members. If your membership is expiring soon, why not visit today to renew. Or if you have a colleague that isn’t currently a member, why not recruit him or her? Refer 3 new members and your membership is FREE! Visit

We at Oregon AWHONN are here to support your nursing practice throughout the year, so don’t hesitate to contact us. No matter what your goals are for 2017, we wish you a happy and prosperous year! §


Lazar, S., Kerr, C., Wasserman, R., Gray, J., Greve, D., Treadway, M., . . . Fischl, B. (2005). Meditation experience is associated with increased cortical thickness. Neuroreport, 16(17), 1893–1897.

Martin, R. A. (2004). Sense of humor and physical health: Theoretical issues, recent findings, and future directions. Humor - International Journal Of Humor Research, (1-2), 1. doi:10.1515/humr.2004.005.

Ronghua, F., & Xia, L. (2015). A regular yoga intervention for staff nurse sleep quality and work stress: a randomised controlled trial. Journal Of Clinical Nursing, 24(23/24), 3374-3379. doi:10.1111/jocn.12983.

Smith, S. A. (2014). Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction: An Intervention to Enhance the Effectiveness of Nurses' Coping With Work-Related Stress. International Journal Of Nursing Knowledge, 25(2), 119-130. doi:10.1111/2047-3095.12025.

Upcoming Events

Portland Metro Chapter Meeting


Hold Thursday, January 26th open on your calendar for the first event of 2017 for the Portland Metro chapter. A speaker and CEUs as well as a dinner venue are in the works. Once plans are confirmed, the information will be emailed. Please mark your calendars to join us January 26th to learn, help plan additional events for 2017, and network with AWHONN friends!

Central Oregon Chapter Meeting

Advanced Fetal Monitoring: Issues in Safety, Choice and Consensus

Oregon AWHONN Abstract Writing Webinar

Wednesday, Jun 9 at 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

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