Relaxation Tips for Nurses
The nursing profession requires education, wisdom and the selfless care of others, sometimes at the expense of the nurse giving the care. Many times, nurses work long hours, juggle many patients and have to navigate through the various channels of a hospital, clinic or medical establishment, being sure to provide care for others while following strict hospital or medical guidelines. As dedicated as a nurse may be to the job at hand, many nurses do not take the time for relaxation or self-care, concerning themselves more with the patients than with their own health. For the nurse that does not take time to relax and unwind, the effect on the mental and physical well-being can be astounding, leading to career dissatisfaction, burnout and lower self-esteem.
Nurses should always remember that while they are tasked with helping others, they are only human, too. No nurse should ever go a full shift without taking a break, even if it means the nurse goes to a different area of the hospital or clinic for a change of scenery. Eating the right foods, whether during a shift, lunch or after a shift has ended is also important for the ability to relax. Nurses, especially, should understand the benefits to a healthy diet and its impact on mental and physical issues, even if they do not always follow the guidelines themselves.
Having the right support is a big help when it comes to nurses that are constantly on the go, helping patients and experiencing the physical and emotional toll a shift can take. With the amount of time a nurse spends walking and standing, clothing and shoes should be comfortable and provide support for physical concerns like back, knee and feet issues. Emotionally speaking, a good friend or colleague can provide a great way for a nurse, or nursing student, to unload and process the emotional toll of the day.
After a shift is over and a nurse is finally home, the ability to really relax and process begins. Even if the nurse has a family to care for, the atmosphere can be much more conducive to relaxation than the sterile hallways of a hospital or clinic. Getting physical, even if its dancing while making dinner or reading a book while treadmilling a few miles can work some of the stress out of the body. Yoga can create a more relaxed state of mind, gently, but activities like Zumba can quickly, and aggressively, relieve stressed muscles and be an emotional outlet, as well. Being sure to get enough sleep may be a difficult goal for many nurses, especially those in school, but with the various online nursing schools available, nurses are better able to accommodate the demands of a nursing program while still maintaining the daily responsibilities of a current nursing job.
The stress and anxiety level of a nurse can be directly correlated to the performance on a job, as well as overall career satisfaction. By ensuring the right steps are taken in terms of self-care, a nurse can be rested, mentally and physically ready to help others and still have time to enjoy life outside of a hospital or other medical establishment.