What do Taylor Swift and Family Nurses have in Common?: More than you may think.

Taylor Swift is a cultural and global phenomenon!  It is amazing how she can transcend genres and generations, including myself as an almost octogenarian.  Whether you like her music or not, it is fascinating and riveting to observe that regardless of the country where she may be performing, she can connect with her audiences on a deeply personal level.

Reflecting upon her relationship with her audiences suddenly and unexpectedly made me think of the microcosm of our relationships with families in our care.  I realized, albeit surprisingly, that there are many similarities of Swift’s personality attributes and the ones that we as family nurses also emulate.

I believe that there are six qualities that we as family nurses share with Taylor Swift:

1. Compassion: Swift has demonstrated compassion through her philanthropic efforts and support for various causes. Similarly, nurses working with families need to show compassion, particularly what I refer to as curious compassion in order to provide holistic care and support to both patients and their families during their experiences of illness suffering.

2. Communication skills: Taylor Swift’s success as a singer-songwriter hinges on her ability to effectively communicate emotions and stories through her lyrics. Nurses working with families must also excel in communication to establish rapport, invite the family’s illness stories, convey information effectively, and facilitate healing and loving interactions among family members and healthcare team members.

3. Adaptability: Swift’s career has undergone numerous transformations, requiring her to adapt to changes in the music industry and public perception. Nurses working with families often encounter unpredictable situations and must be adaptable to navigate diverse and challenging family dynamics and evolving healthcare needs.

4. Resilience: Despite facing criticism and challenges in her career, Taylor Swift has demonstrated resilience by persevering and continuing to pursue her passion for music. Nurses working with families also need resilience to cope with stress, handle emotionally demanding situations, and maintain professional composure in the face of adversity.

5. Advocacy: Taylor Swift has used her platform to advocate for various social and political causes, including gender equality. Similarly, nurses working with families may advocate for their patients’ needs and rights, ensuring they receive appropriate care and support from healthcare systems and communities.

6. Empathy: Taylor Swift’s ability to connect with her audiences emotionally through her music suggests a strong capacity for empathy. Nurses working with families must also possess empathy to understand and address the unique needs, challenges, and sufferings that may be facing each family member.

For the record, I have never attended a Taylor Swift concert but after writing this blog, I’m much more inclined to want to experience her aura in person! But in the meantime, I remain privileged to assist families suffering with serious illness and hopefully implementing the qualities that we as family nurses and Taylor Swift have in common. Who would have thought?