Every month, I take a step back from the metrics, reports and analytical work of my business—or rather, I take a step back from “work” to think. It’s during this time that I reflect on the successes and failures of the month before. How often was I frustrated, or a member of my staff left feeling overworked or underprepared to handle their responsibilities? How often did we receive praise from residents families, enjoy a good laugh with one of our patients, have a genuinely great day?
I do this for a few reasons:
It’s important to recharge the brain.
- If I don’t take a step back at least once a month, then I’m not giving myself room to take a step forward. In any business, especially in healthcare, it’s key to do what you can to prevent burn out.
I want to come up with clear goals for how to improve things.
- If money wasn’t a factor, what could I do in my home to improve my staff and my patients care? I ask a lot of questions like this. For example, if I’ve been consistently frustrated with how maintenance sets up a room for a resident, a goal of mine is going to be improving the maintenance system—and dreaming of the ways I can do that.
Doing this sort of thinking and vision work benefits everyone in my business.
- Making time to read and think and let myself breathe lets my brain wander and start thinking unconventionally. You know all of those moments where you forget the name of something and it’s on the tip of your tongue but you can’t remember until a few hours or days later? This kind of thinking and vision work is like that—give your brain some room.
While improving your nursing home has a lot to do with your numbers and the data you collect, it also has a lot to do with the amount of time you spend thinking outside of the box. There is so much you can do as a leader to change things in your home for the better. Take a few minutes to think about what’s been holding you (or your staff) back, what’s something that could be more efficient? Now, start dreaming. The solutions you’ll create when you take a step back might just surprise you.