Let Your 2022 Achievements Lead You Even Farther in 2023
Happy New Year, oncology nursing colleagues! When I enter a new year, I like to ponder all of the positivity that it can bring.
Reflect on 2022
As we crawl out of the COVID-19 pandemic, each of us is trying to reclaim our personal and professional lives. We are resuming travel, and many of you may have enjoyed a vacation or professional meeting. Get out your phone and reflect on your pictures from 2022 or look back in your calendar and celebrate all you experienced and accomplished last year.
Let’s look at the ONS Board of Directors’ busy and productive 2022 calendar. Last February, we met with the Leadership Development Committee (LDC) to refine the new Board selection process from the bylaws change. The change was important to ensure that the Board is diverse and equipped with the necessary skills to lead us into the future. In April, we convened our first in-person ONS Congress® in two years, a time of reunion and celebration with nearly 3,000 oncology nurse colleagues. In September, we resumed a live ONS Capitol Hill Days, in which more than 100 ONS members converged on Capitol Hill and visited 150 congressional offices to advocate for ONS’s priority oncology legislative issues.
Other accomplishments throughout 2022 included:
- Approving a new strategic plan
- Training all board members in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) for board governance
- Preparing for ONS’s 50th anniversary in 2025
As ONS president, I also had the privilege of attending various advocacy panels, representing ONS at the American Nurses Association Organizational Affiliates (https://voice.ons.org/news-and-views/your-ons-membership-offers-you-benefits-in-other-organizations-too#:~:text=The%20American%20Nurses,nursing%20profession%20faces.) meetings, and meeting President Joe Biden (https://voice.ons.org/news-and-views/biden-announces-progress-on-cancer-moonshot-initiative-meets-with-ons-president) during a Cancer Moonshot event.
Your 2022 may have been a really great year or challenging one, but pause and give gratitude, thanks, or appreciation for something—even life itself. Studies reveal that gratitude can improve our immune response (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1693417/pdf/15347530.pdf), sleep quality (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychores.2008.09.002), emotional regulation (https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2019.1651893), and feelings of happiness and positive mood (https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2003.31.5.431); foster hope for the future (https://doi.org/10.1080/07448481.2021.1922415); reduce stress and burnout (https://doi.org/10.1037/a0037895); and increase resilience (https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-022-00554-x). Ways to practice gratitude include journaling, morning meditation and prayer, and using a gratitude jar: Write down what you are thankful for and pull one out when you are feeling down to remind you of the good things during challenging times. For me, I’m grateful for all of you, the ONS members, who foster excellence in oncology nursing and quality patient care.
Set Goals for 2023
Whether you consider them resolutions, goals, intentions, or priorities, striving for specific plans on an ongoing basis is important to effectively delegate your resources and time. I’ll use the analogy of a budget, which helps us balance where we direct our money. Setting goals allows us to direct our time in the same way—including time to rest and play after working hard.
Of all the ONS Board’s goals and priorities for 2023, the most exciting is the launch of our strategic plan, which serves as the compass for where we want to spend our ONS resources. We have two overarching goals:
- ONS is the sought-after source and trusted voice of knowledge and evidence that sets the standard for clinical oncology nursing practice. By engaging and aligning ONS chapters and members in statewide and national initiatives, we are increasing adoption of our evidence-based practice materials in cancer care settings around the country.
- ONS is structured, governed, and aligned to maximize financial, staff, and volunteer resources to sustain and grow the organization. You will see tangible changes as we elevate our DEI commitment throughout staff and membership and mindfully integrate DEI in all of our work, such as in ONS Congress sessions that include DEI principles. We are also evolving ONS’s volunteer program to increase your opportunities to lead and share your experience and generational knowledge with ONS and other oncology nurses.
As you make your own goals for 2023, I hope you include attending the 48th Annual ONS Congress (https://www.ons.org/congress/2023) in San Antonio, TX, in April. Don’t miss the incredible opportunity to meet the new board of directors, take part in town hall discussions, network with colleagues from around the world, and learn about cutting-edge innovation in cancer care to stay current with our complex specialty.
Cheers, oncology nursing colleagues! Happy 2023.