Hey Nurses: Why Snapchat? The power of relationships. [updated]


I’m a Nurse mentor, Educator, Leader, Coach, Motivator and Consultant. I want to connect with and provide value to everyone who can benefit from my skills and knowledge.

I’m also an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, blogger, vlogger,  (former) podcaster and mediapreneur. I’ve been a Nurse and Nurse blogger for over a decade, and in that time I’ve acquired a broad range of life expertise and professional wisdom.

I want to share my experiences with other Nurses, Health Care professionals and the like so they may benefit from the lessons I’ve learned with less effort and in a fraction of the time.

I’m a story teller, counselor and guide. The reason for my success (both professional & personal) lies solely in the relationships I’ve developed. Which is a concept I’ve also heard over and over from the most successful.

The stories I tell with my blog writing, video producing and  (former) podcast broadcasting (were) are the foundation of my communication. But I’ve discovered how Snapchat can springboard my relationship with my audience.

Snapchat is gaining has gained guru-level attention because it provides a unique platform for one-on-one communication like no other [Update: thanks to Instagram stories, Snapchat’s communication is no longer unique].

Quick snippets of multimedia communication in the form of an editable picture (or video) called a “snap” that has a *24-hr shelf life. It can be posted to your personal “story” (similar to your Facebook/Twitter timeline) or sent via private message to your friends on Snapchat. (It disappears from your timeline 24 hours after it is posted and private messages disappear 10 seconds after opening)

[*Side note: There are (multiple) ways to save your snaps]

It’s a great medium for fielding questions from fans as well as provide small slices of information-sharing gold with anyone who is your friend on the platform.


[Snapchat Murders Facebook]

You see, unless you make the effort to share it on other platforms, the information on Snapchat is exclusive and (mostly) private on Snapchat’s platform. [Which at the time of this writing was mobile-only.]

I’ve communicated and shared information with fellow professionals, students, bloggers, vloggers, podcasters and others who were seeking direction and advice on a personal level that would not be possible on other platforms.

Here’s how I initially started using Snapchat:

  • sharing snippets of my daily personal life (including my journey through knee surgery)
  • providing valuable professional advice
  • sharing mediapreneur topic advice (blog/vlog/marketing/podcasting/content creation)
  • real-time private professional communication and networking
  • offering educational and career advice
  • sharing behind the scenes information on upcoming projects

The “convenience-factor” is something I failed to understand until I started using Snapchat more. Instead of spending 5 minutes or longer on a 140-character limit update to Twitter (yes I know Twitter updated their limits) or a psuedo-long-formed post update on Facebook or Instagram (which also has character limits), I can just “snap’ a 10 second video snippet of whatever subject is on my mind. If I need to share more info, I just pick up where I left off with the next “snap”. Instead of spending 10-30 minutes on a thought through worded text, I just take sequential “snaps” to tell a story.

This type of communication dialogue can be used when chatting one-on-one, or you can opt for the more traditional worded-text message (in a private Snap). If you’re interested in bells & whistles, yep the app has them too. [Check out the articles on filters]

I initially started to use the app to share my personal journey through my right knee surgery, but it’s molded into a wonderful way to make deep connections with my audience.

Here’s how I’m now using Snapchat:

  • created multiple Snapchat story “series” (content) to spark the conversation and create engagement with my Nursing community.
  • created “Snapchat Classroom for Nurses” a “virtual” classroom in lecture form on various topics related to Nursing and the Nursing field.
  • share “The Daily Sean Vlog” & “Facebook Live Vlog” episodes with behind-the-scenes content, topic discussions and various vlog updates.
  • created “#nurseprotip #nurselife #showandtell” a medium (prompt) for sharing snapshots and snippets of interesting content, media, and academic related Nursing information. For example sharing teaching points on viewing chest x-rays.
  • intermittently re-introduce myself to my Snapchat friends, as my friends list keeps growing and I want everyone to know who they just met.
  • created “Question of the Day” a query of random Nursing-related questions to help garner feedback and create engagement around a hot topic in Nursing.
  • created “Coffee Talk” a random personalized conversation between me and my friend list about (Nursing-related) topics that move me, saturate my computer or are popular in the world.

The conversation on Snapchat is much more enriched because you have this air of security with the disappearing Snap (yes, beware it is not fool-proof), but you find more personal connections where you make the effort.

The signal-to-noise ratio is not only tolerable but completely customizable and simple.

You could say I’m a big fan of Snapchat.

How can I help you? Come follow me on Snapchat: @seanpdent


UPDATE: (last updated October 17, 2016)

Here are some great how-to articles on using Snapchat:

The ultimate guide on how to use Snapchat

The ultimate guide on how to use Snapchat, explained by a 23-year-old

How to Use Snapchat

The Snap Generation: A Guide to Snapchat’s History

How to Snapchat like the teens?

How to get Snapchat’s new selfie Lenses

Getting to Know the Ghost: The Complete Guide to Snapchat

Snapchat is Growing Up: Everything You Need to Know About Snapchat’s Latest Update

The Beginner’s Guide to Snapchat

How to use Snapchat new features: Snapchat adds new face swap feature, Chat 2.0, Emoji stickers for video

How To Use Snapchat Lenses So You Can Puke Rainbows Like Everyone Else: A Step-By-Step Tutorial

15 Hidden Snapchat Hacks & Features You’ll Wish You Knew About Sooner

How-To: Add Snapchat snaps to Instagram Stories [Video]


Snapchat introduces playlists to help fight story overload

Snapchat just changed how you watch stories — but there’s a way to autoplay them the old way

5 Snapchat settings you should change right now

How to use Snapchat | New Snapchat features: How to use Story Playlists, multiple Snapchat filters, face swap, Chat 2.0, Emoji stickers for video and more

The Strategy Behind Snapchat’s Memories Update
Snapchat Tutorial (video below is lengthy… 39 minutes long)


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Finding the miracle in the minimum

Find the miracle in the minimum

We spend the majority of our lives swimming in a sea of comparisons. It’s both a blessing and a curse. It keeps us from being complacent, but it also can drive us insane. We get caught up in the process instead of enjoying the results.

We compare our current selves to our former selves.

We compare ourselves to others.

We compare our results to others.

We compare our job to another job.

The list is endless and is a vicious circle that never ends.

Currently I’m comparing my physical abilities while injured to my abilities when I was injury-free. Which is an unfair comparison in every way. But when are these comparisons ever fair?

I decided to celebrate the small wins of my day today, instead of dwelling on what I couldn’t do. Besides, I’ve already talked complained about them ad nauseam.

My miracle minimums today:

  • I walked up and down my staircases railing-free. I could step up and down without leaning against  the railing or wall.
  • I took the garbage out.
  • I didn’t have to wear compression gear all day to keep the swelling at bay. (I had been needing to keep my knee wrapped and compression socks on to keep my toes from swelling up like mini-sausages. )
  • I made lunch as well as pre-made some meals for the next couple days.

I’ll take it when and where I can get it.

On another positive note, I had a friend offer to drive me to/from any needed places while I’m rehabbing and on crutches. I also discovered my city offers Uber!

So I at least have options to get to my needed therapy. I plan on doing my own traditional physical therapy as well as utilize the pool at the YMCA for water therapy. I’m so ready.

T-minus 6 days until surgery.



When was the last time you were 100%?


This knee injury is testing my mental toughness. As a working adult we always dream about having an extended amount of time off.

I used to think, “Are you kidding… that would be heaven”. To not have to worry about getting up and going to work?!! Isn’t that what we all want?

I remember being jealous of friends and family who had reached retirement. “OH man! You are SO lucky” is what I would tell them.

Only for them to tell me later, how time off is not all it’s cracked up to be.


Well I’m starting to get it now.

I’m off on an extended leave. I’ve been home from vacation and I’ve been ready to go back to work, but my body had other plans. I seem to have peaks and valleys to my day. I feel great and my knee is almost able to straighten. I’m able to walk with almost no pain and I can go up and down steps with minimal limp.

I've become a caged animal with this knee injury. Unable to drive... And can't be on my feet for a very long time due to pain. I make a concerted effort not to go batshit crazy. So when the sunshine peaks through my office window... I have to pause and enjoy it. Editing this week's #podcast episode, will drop tomorrow. Be sure to check it out.  I talk about #nurses making the worst patients. Oh, you know we do. #nurse #nurselife #nursing #nursepractitioner #mettle #ownit #relentless
I’ve become a caged animal with this knee injury. Unable to drive… And can’t be on my feet for a very long time due to pain. I make a concerted effort not to go batshit crazy. So when the sunshine peaks through my office window… I have to pause and enjoy it. Editing this week’s #podcast episode, will drop tomorrow. Be sure to check it out. I talk about #nurses making the worst patients. Oh, you know we do. #nurse #nurselife #nursing #nursepractitioner #mettle #ownit #relentless

Then there are other times where my knee paralyzes me. I sit up, pivot or stand a certain way and the pain is so severe it’s as if I stepped on a live wire or someone snuck up from behind me and “TAZED” me [don’t taze me bro..]

It’s frustrating when getting in the car to run some errands completely exhausts me with a ridiculous amount of pain.

Here’s the kick in the teeth…

I can’t drive myself anywhere because I can’t use my driving leg (injured my right knee). I’m unable to lock out my knee so driving would be beyond dangerous. So I’m depending on my wife to chauffeur me any and everywhere [WHICH SUCKS]. I cannot even describe how much that angers me. My poor wife is being put through the ringer.


So, today started out on a high note.. but then ended pretty low. Then I beat myself up for not being “up” [even after this post].

After I paused to enjoy the sunshine (see included pic) I remembered that my engine can’t be in 5th gear all the time, nor can my life. And ironically I could hear Lewis Howes voice in my head (sorry Lewis):

What I’m talking about today is the importance of living fully in whatever season of life you are currently in.

I learned from my football days that you can’t go all out all the time.

There’s a time to prepare, time to train, time to perform, and time to recover.
Live in the Season of Your Life

The School of Greatness Podcast was one of the first Podcasts I subscribed to when I dived into the world of Podcasting. I love the message he delivers and the way he delivers it. Go check out any and everything Lewis produces, you won’t be disappointed.

I’m like a caged animal. My norm is starting my day before sunrise.. and arriving home after dark. A full day of work, then coaching (or training). I still don’t sit well [it’s why I chose my current profession].

I’m ready to get better. My surgery is scheduled for next week, it can’t come quick enough. I knew this knee injury would challenge me physically, but never expected my emotions to be tested as much as they have.

In the meantime, I’m going to live fully during this season of my life.