Nursing theories are usually applied in practice in order to regularize thoughts and organize a complete process to explain nursing actions. Since individuals grow and mature throughout a lifetime, their personal worldviews and philosophies also develop, serving as the foundation for nursing care. However, the philosophy alone cannot serve as a system or comprehensive explanation by which health specialists base their care. Theories applied to the nursing profession serve as a link between the nurses’ worldview and the way, in which one assesses outcomes, interprets patient information, and provides care. A middle- range theory is used in practice and nursing research focusing on some key concepts. The theory describes a representation of reality that deals with a limited number of variables and particular cases. Philosophy of nursing is the crucial aspect of my development as a professional nurse, who delivers high-quality care and determines the direction to follow. The paper seeks to explore Reed’s theory of self-transcendence that is consistent with personal values and beliefs that guide my nursing practice.
The end of the twentieth century was marked by the development of middle-range nursing theories. The theory of self-transcendence elaborated by Pamela Reed provides a framework for a holistic approach to nursing care. A great emphasis is made on the relationship between the environment and human beings. Self-Transcendence activity improves well-being through the expansion of personal boundaries. The theory is consistent with my personal beliefs and values because it focuses on continuous lifespan development, along with the health changes, vulnerability to mortality, diseases, and losses. The self-transcendence theory provides concepts that pay significant attention to nursing intervention and patient development. It enables clients to experience self-transcendence and improve their well-being. Self-transcendence includes experience that connects, not separates a man from the self, environment, and other people.
Numerous factors that affect well-being and self-transcendence are related to the person, such as human satisfaction, happiness, and spirituality with life and self-appraisal; all of those play a crucial role in how one views life. Since people cannot exist outside the environment, the environment is considered fundamental and essential for the developmental maturity and broadening boundaries through self-transcendence. Based on the main assumption that a man and environment are crucial to each other, the human capacity to use self-transcendence activity for healthy development during the life path is associated with improved well-being. The main concept of self-transcendence is the expansion of personal boundaries towards understanding dreams, values, beliefs, environment, people around, and integration of future and past in the present. Self-transcendence generates a better comprehension and recognition of a person’s connection to the environment. Moreover, it characterizes the developmental maturity when individuals are faced with illnesses, and each of them is aware of personal mortality. Through the act of self-transcendence activity, maturity comes with the human capability to resolve challenges, recognize and comprehend different life situations beyond immediate circumstances and own boundaries.
Every discipline focuses on development and improvement. Building a considerable knowledge base distinguishes the middle-range nursing theory from other important theories. Its application will also help me direct the nursing practice in the right direction. All nursing theories enhance the profession, especially when it comes to evidence-based practice. The primary goal of nursing care is to deliver care to all the patients on a daily basis. Smith and Liehr (2014) define nursing as art and science. Science helps to encompass research and theories related to the phenomena and concerns associated with the discipline. Art is the creative application of acquired knowledge. The theory of self-transcendence developed by Pamela Reed has deeply impressed me. Application of the theory on practice will provide me, as a future nurse, with necessary tools to improve patient care and health outcomes. Reed’s theory gives an explanation to many processes, helps every medical specialist to articulate important information in practice and significantly contributes to the nursing profession. I want to give safe care to all the patients and achieve success in my career from using this middle-range theory on practice.
The middle-range theory of self-transcendence is a theory dedicated to human development. It is particularly relevant to a human being, who is close to death. Nurses and other care providers can freely apply this theory in various nursing facilities, especially when the end-of-life issues can compromise the well-being of the patients. The awareness of personal mortality associated with self-transcendence underscores an increased level of self-transcendence in those, who experience vulnerability. Pamela Reed incorporates a lifespan development into the middle-range theory, which states that human beings continue to develop and mature after adolescence faced with adversity and life-changing events.
The core of the self-transcendence theory is the presence of human potential for well-being. Those, who encounter with mortality and vulnerability, get a high capacity for self-transcendence and its positive impact on well-being. Reed’s theory is related to the continuous developmental relations between human beings and the environment, where they live. People’s environment encompasses the internal and external world, as well as the surroundings. A man’s expression of self-transcendence is positively related to his functioning and health in the adult life confronting mortality because of chronic diseases and advanced age. Although Reed originally intended to describe humans’ mental and physical health during the last years of life in her middle-range theory, significant attention is also paid to children and adolescents. The famous theorist defines health as a sense of well-being with the feelings of healthiness and wholeness, following the personal beliefs and norms for health and completeness.
The theory of self-transcendence, elaborated by one of the most influential theorists, has strengthened my own beliefs and values and prompted me to become a better health specialist. It is true that without Reed’s theory, no researcher will be able to conduct research related to well-being. Moreover, it will be difficult to analyze the relationship between the surrounding environment and patients, as well as feel their emotions without the knowledge of the theory. Every health event confronts a man with mortality and vulnerability. Therefore, there is a potential context for promoting well-being and healing. All nurses have to use Reed’s middle-range theory to facilitate self-transcendence in patients and encourage prayer, reflection, meditation, and journaling. Moreover, the theory application will foster meaningful, community, and personal relationship, group psychotherapy. Self-transcendence and nursing lead to a positive healing experience. The middle-range theory emphasizes the importance of nursing practice, advances nursing knowledge and management. It also helps nurses to effectively provide holistic care to all their clients.