Narrative Reflective Process: A Means to Whole Person Research Cluster Formation
Keywords:Narrative Reflective Process, person-centered care, research cluster formation
AbstractObjectives: As nursing faculty members of Health and Illness research cluster our focus is on promoting humanistic practices, such as person-centered care, for individuals and their families living with illness and its consequences. In keeping with this holistic focus we wanted to explore a non-traditional approach to building a productive professional collaboration.Methods: In the early stages of our research cluster formation, we chose to engage in Schwind’s Narrative Reflective Process (NRP), a creative self-expression activity that is informed by the Connelly and Clandinin’s Narrative Inquiry research approach. Creative activities included storytelling, metaphors and drawing. We began the process by working in pairs, telling stories of our research experiences, both positive and negative. We then drew images that metaphorically represented each of these. Following, we described our images to the cluster group, while considering common narrative threads. The process ended by the group envisioning our interpretation of our collaborative cluster work. Throughout the year, our cluster met on a regular basis working on our common interest of person-centred care. One year later, we recreated our images to see how the view of our collaborative cluster work had evolved. This time we chose to create one large image together.Results: We found that our creative experiential activities opened possibilities for trust and created a safe space for research cluster members to share their developing ideas. We felt that by sharing our personal experiences through drawings and metaphors allowed us to connect with one another as whole persons. It allowed us to recognize that we are more than just our professional roles.Conclusions: Through the creative self-expression of NRP we engaged the research cluster members as whole persons. As a result, the cohesion, trust and collaboration resulted in increased research creativity and productivity, which would not have been possible to create alone.
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