Life Connected: Creating a Blog in Nursing

This blog is 18 months old, has 170 posts and increasing numbers of visitors so it’s going well in its little niche area of nurse educator resources. The ‘we’ has become ‘me’ in the last 12 months due to other work commitments, training and exams for my co-creator. So here are a few things I have reflected on during the blogging journey:

  1. Writing skills – I keep the posts short and hopefully focused for learning on the go. I just don’t have the storytelling skills that I see other blogger’s use. I feel more confident in using an approach that is comfortable for me, and hopefully others find useful.
  2. Positive Approach- The sharing and discussion around resources, rather than the critique continues to be the focus. I am not a professor or an academic so I will leave the critiquing to the experts.
  3. Lifelong Learning – I love all the clinical, education and other array of resources that I read as preparation for the blog posts. I have continued with reading education focused books post qualification which is a major positive part of ongoing development.
  4. Learning Networks –  Mainly through social media platforms has expanded from the critical care community to a wider nursing network, but also wider to those in school and higher education, business leaders and motivators and authors/journalists. With this, the topics I am exposed to are so varied.
  5. Social Media – Tricky one with recent privacy issues in the news, but let’s focus on the agile sharing and discussion of evidence based practice.
  6. Discussion – there has been a few comments on posts but not as much discussion as I thought may be generated directly on the blog. However, discussion is occurring on other social media platforms so it may be just how people prefer to communicate in different media.
  7. Education not clinical focused – I have avoided any clinical nursing discussion and hopefully this keeps the blog away from the grey areas of clinical advice, accountability and professionalism!
  8. Slide-ology – I have tried to make the blog more visual, but this is okay if you have the internet bandwidth. I wonder if the images and embedded videos need to be removed and keep it plain text to enable true accessibility.
  9. FOANed – It’s still advert free and independent- but I have to work a few extra shifts to pay for the yearly costs of running the blog.
  10. Open Access – it’s complicated, but I do think all of healthcare (including patients/consumers) needs access to the best current evidence and this is not the case.
  11. Heutagogy –  amazing online resources being created by nursing students across the world. Impressed and in awe of their knowledge, awareness, mindfulness and reflections.
  12. Frequency of posts – It’s a balance with work, study, other projects and something called free time. I have at times been prepared with posts ready for the next 2 months, then in contrast it has ran on a week to week basis. Balancing work and formal study, the frequency has reduced from a post every 3 days to once per week but all academic assignments and deadlines were met.
  13. The blog is my organised notes – I can refer back to posts and resources with such ease, rather than searching through note books and folders.
  14. CPD – my hours are well and truly met.
  15. Coding – still on the to do list!
  16. Community of Practice – Part of the nurse blogging “WeNurses” community as part of the #NHS70 celebrations.
  17. Does the blog need a peer review process or keep it agile? One to ponder for the future.
  18. Fun – it’s actually been a rewarding experience.