Feeling Burned Out as a Nurse? Here are Some Stress Relieving Tips
November 12, 2020
Nursing is universally considered a lucrative and fulfilling career. However, there are no two ways about the fact that it is stressful too. From the time a nursing student begins a nursing course in Canada to the time he/she gets a job and then retires after a fruitful professional life, there are difficult situations to deal with. There are moments that induce stress on a daily basis and this has a great tendency to affect many nurses on mental and physical levels.
Patients and cases , time constraints for getting the work done, overworking and neglecting their own bodies or small conflicts with managers or co-workers, etc. can be attributed to some of the common sources. Stress can lead to intense exhaustion, tiredness, and sometimes even detachment from the work, which is troublesome, particularly in nursing.
There are serious patient concerns that nurses have to manage and to ensure that these concerns are managed efficiently, it is very important for the stress to be regulated. Nurses must learn successful and effective management of stress for not just their own but the well-being of the patients as well.
If you are a nurse who is practicing or even if you are studying to become one, then this blog is for you. Here are some stress-relieving tips that can considerably help in managing the overwhelming stress and emotions while preventing a burn out.
1. Organize and Prioritize: We know you must have been hearing about the importance of an organized and disciplined routine all your life. However, even after knowing its importance, there are not many of us who are able to inculcate it in our lives as much as we should.
In the field of nursing, being organized is more important than ever. It will not be wrong to say that being organized is actually the first and foremost stress management trick that can help nurses in leading a good personal and professional life.
An organized routine will help in keeping track of everything while offering an excellent way to deal with anxiety and other problems related to it. If you are a nurse who is still attending a nursing course in Canada, now is the best time to adopt this habit. On the other hand, if you are past that stage, even then you can start right away simply because it is never too late to inculcate good habits.
Begin by setting priorities on a daily basis because that will help in setting your mind in the right direction and it will also help in formulating better plans that will eventually help in achieving all the tasks. In case you think it is possible, you can come to work ten to twenty minutes early any day of the week and review all tasks for figuring out the most efficient ways to perform and overcome the stress.
2. Physical Work Out: The fact that exercise decreases the stress levels in individuals needs no introduction. However, after grueling long hours of work shifts, finding the time for a physical workout can itself seem like a challenge. So the solution can very often be to find little ways in which you can incorporate an exercise routine in everyday life.
A physical workout does not mean going to a gym to sweat it out with a rigorous routine, rather you can find any comfortable routine that helps you reduce adrenaline and boost your endorphins. Yoga can be an excellent solution for a physical workout. It is actually holistic in the sense that it encourages the wellness of your mind, body, and spirit.
Hence, if nurses wish to keep stress at bay then prioritizing exercising is a must. Effectively keeping up an exercise routine either before or after work will begin to show great results on the physical and mental health benefits. Plus, the immune system of nurses will also become healthy with exercising.
3. Breathe Deeply: Taking the time to breathe deeply can seem redundant to many people because as far as stress management is concerned, it is one of the best ways to relieve yourself. Whenever you feel stressed, either during studying for the completion of nursing courses in Canada or being at work with difficult patients, stop and take a couple of deep breaths.
Deep breathing is much more effective when you breathe from the nose and exhale from the mouth. It can become easily possible to mitigate the effects of stress because the brain is instantly directed to calm down which further results in the relaxation of the body.
4. Pick Up a Hobby: If your life is only about waking up, going to work, coming back home, and sleeping, only to repeat the same thing day after day then this is a major indication for a change. Picking up a hobby or doing something that you thoroughly enjoy will help in elevating your mood and adding much-needed positivity to your life.
Regardless of whether you are a student who is studying for a 2 years nursing program in Canada or if you are working as a nurse, picking up a hobby will elevate your happiness quotient.All you need is just twenty minutes of a day to do something that genuinely makes you happy. You can avoid all the stress by taking a long and comfortable bath after working tirelessly. You can take up painting, cooking, playing scrabble, or designing something.
Whatever you choose, just ensure that you are doing it simply because you enjoy it and not because it is an obligation. Otherwise, it will not bring you joy and reduce your stress levels.
As a nurse, if you get something else to focus on, something that you actually enjoy then you will notice a happy shift in your mood along with a feeling of pride and accomplishment. The best thing about picking up a hobby is that the possibilities are enormous and have great mental and physical benefits as well.
5. Socialize With Friends Outside Work: A nurse spends many hours at work every day in addition to the time that is spent commuting. Since most of the time is spent in a professional setting only, it is natural to have more friends at work and this is important as well because support is very important in a professional environment. In fact, friends at work are very important in managing stressful tasks at work.
That being said, in case all of your friends are fellow nurses or other colleagues, then you are at a high vulnerability to persistent nursing job stressors because the topic of discussion will only revolve around work. This will be even when you are not working. For this reason, it is rather necessary that nurses have friends outside of their jobs.
You can always begin by joining local clubs, indulging in some volunteer work, going out more whenever you find the time, etc. Of course, this does not mean that nurses shouldn’t spend time with their colleagues but whenever there is an opportunity and the time, meeting people outside of work can be helpful in leading to a quality life.
6. Spend More Time in Nature: Whenever we go out for a walk alongside a water body or in the greens, we come back feeling rejuvenated. This is because spending time in nature or even simply sitting and looking at a beautiful landscape can reduce negative feelings such as anger, stress, or fear.
In fact, it provides tangible physiological benefits for stress management like balanced blood pressure and heart rate, relieving muscle tension, and a reduction in stress hormone production. Irrespective of whether you are a student who is working round the clock for successful completion of a 2-year nursing program in Canada or a practicing nurse, try to spend some time in nature for getting refreshed.
As a useful tip, you can also surround yourself with images of nature. Spend some time looking at the computer devices and screens filled with images of nature. When you use these images on your desktop screen, it will give your eyes a soothing effect throughout the day.
7. Seek Professional Help: In case you reach the conclusion that the techniques that are mentioned above are not helping much in managing your stress then it is time to take professional assistance. Nurses spend more than half of their lives taking care of everyone. Hence, when the nurses feel that the stress is getting too much to handle then they must reach out to the professionals.
Stress at work should not manifest into physical problems, lead to body pains, strain the interpersonal relationships, seriously affect the work performance, and more than anything put the patient safety at risk. This can only be managed if the nurses take professional help immediately.
There are many organizations that provide some kind of assistance program for the staff but there are also other resources that can do the same within the community. Nurses must seek out the best possible option while acknowledging the fact that the stress management for a caregiver can be tough and taking the primary steps for assistance are important for good well-being.
Nurses care for others without thinking about themselves. This needs to change immediately because nurses cannot work effectively when they’re facing serious challenges with their own mental wellness.
It is very easy for the nurses to experience feelings of being burned out because they are vulnerable to stressful situations at work. Nurses must be encouraged to be in touch with their own needs, feelings, and emotions so that they can recognize their concerns and take effective steps to ensure a long and healthy career.