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CNA's: Put On Your Game Face

Guest Post: Melanie Fischer, RN
What does it mean to be a CNA? 

Wow, that is a pretty wide open question. We can go down so many different paths as far as subject content goes.  However, I would like address how a CNA should conduct themselves.

First, let’s take the title-CNA, which stands for Certified Nurse Aide.  As a CNA, you assist the nurse in patient or resident care, helping them with their every day needs.  States vary widely in certification curriculum, instructional hours, and CNA duties.  However, the overall picture is, you are one of the caretakers. 

A CNA must care for the resident in a kind, caring, and loving manner.  A good CNA puts others needs ahead of their own, including frustrations over their personal and work lives.  Don’t let your personal frustrations interfere when you are with your resident.  Please leave your troubles and crisis at the door when you come to work.  We all have a heavy burden to carry in our personal lives but when we arrive at work, our purpose should be solely devoted to the residents right in front of us. 

What I am trying to say is this: “put your game face on.”  Trust me, I realize this is difficult. But if we all work together to do this, our jobs would mean so much more to our patients. Our residents certainly deserve that. 

Keep in mind, our residents are paying us to take care of them!  If you pay for a service – whether it be in a restaurant or otherwise, how do you expect to be treated? What do you expect from the service?  That is eye opening when you really think about it.

Be the example and set the bar high. See how many co-workers you can encourage to start following in your footsteps.  Remember, it can all begin with you.  Use this motto in your everyday life as well!  You would be surprised how you’re life changes for the better! 
  • Be Positive 
  • Be Kind
  • Be Honest
  • Be Respectful
  • Be Giving
  • Be Polite
  • Be Caring
  • Be Flexible
  • Be complimentary
  • Be a good leader
  • Be appreciative
  • Be Thankful
  • Be Empathetic

One aspect that I often hear from student CNA’s is the misconception of the true picture of the hard work it is to be a CNA.  Being a CNA can be exhausting physically, mentally, and emotionally.  Don’t get me wrong, it is so rewarding. But with the strains of the work, a CNA needs to stay on the positive side of life and don’t forget to keep the humor.  I’m not talking about making fun of others but having fun with the residents.  Laughter is the best medicine and it doesn’t come with a price tag.

A CNA devotes his or her working hours to the people they are caring for.  Give it 110%.  I like to tell CNA’s, negativity spreads like wildfire.  Keep it positive!  Conduct yourself with the highest of integrity!  See the best in the day, in the resident, in the facility, and in your co-workers!   
Melanie Fischer, RN 
CNA/CMA Director

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