Being a nurse is stressful. You have to juggle many different tasks and responsibilities, and there is always the potential for something to go wrong. On top of that, many nurses are also students. They are studying to acquire additional qualifications to advance their career.
This added pressure of performing well in two different roles, as a student and a nurse, can cause an increase in stress levels. As a result, burnout is a real concern for nurses.
Since nurses can’t give up on their studies or job, they must look for ways to cope with the stress. In this post, we’ll highlight some useful tips for the frontline warriors of healthcare.
Look for an online program
As a nurse, mental and physical exhaustion are a part of your daily routine. Long shift hours with undefined break times are a challenging situation as is. If you pair it with the compulsion of attending a traditional college program, you’d want to give up before you realize it. Not to mention, the financial burden as well. That’s where online programs come in to save the day.
You can get your degree or diploma with the desired flexibility and comfort of learning from your home. You can also take online courses at your own pace and set a study schedule that works for you.
Since BSN is a requirement for many higher-level nursing positions, it is important to find an online program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The BSN nursing online programs will help you get closer to your goals without putting your career on the back burner.
Up your organizational skills
One of the most crucial things you can do to reduce stress is to get organized. When juggling multiple roles, it’s easy for things to start slipping through the cracks. But if you can take a few minutes each day to plan and organize your tasks, it will make a world of difference.
Some unbeatable organizational tips for nurses are:
- Keep a daily planner to track your tasks and responsibilities
- Make a list of goals for each week and month
- Break down big projects into smaller, more manageable tasks
- Use a time-blocking technique to schedule your tasks
When you’re at work, you can reduce your stress by doing a quick pre-report chart review or getting your supplies ready before your shift starts. And when you’re studying, try to focus on one task at a time.
Budget your time
Considering your demanding profession, you may not be able to prepare for your exams or work on your assignments unless you budget your time smartly. You can try studying during your lunch break or on your days off to ease your burden. You can also benefit from online resources, such as nursing assignment help services, to complete your papers while focusing on other tasks.
You must make a study plan to allocate your time in the best way possible. Create a list of all the topics you need to cover. Then, estimate how much time you’ll need for each task. Once you have a plan, stick to it as much as possible. Of course, there will be days when you can’t stick to the plan, but that’s okay. Just try to get back on track as soon as possible.
Give yourself enough rest
Burnout is kryptonite for nurses. It can negatively impact your life, from work to personal relationships. So, you must take care of yourself and give your body the rest it needs.
Sleep stands at the top of the list when it comes to self-care. A decent night’s sleep can help you feel energetic and motivated at work and in your studies. It’ll also boost your brain cells so you can better retain information. As a nurse, you need to be physically and mentally sharp at all times. So, ensure you get at least 7-8 hours of sleep every night.
If you’ve scheduled some study hours after completing your shift, don’t dive into it without taking a power nap. Your mind needs to be fresh to understand the technicalities of nursing.
The days you could afford to cram for your exams are long gone. With the dynamic nature of the healthcare industry, you need to study smart if you want to stay ahead of the curve. That means understanding the concepts rather than memorizing them. Try to relate the theory to your practical experience to solidify your understanding. You can also discuss your doubts with your peers or mentors.
When you’re studying for an exam, create a study guide to help you focus on the key points. And don’t forget to take practice quizzes to test your knowledge. There are plenty of online resources that offer free nursing quizzes. The amount of stress you can alleviate just by studying smart cannot be overemphasized.
Feed your body the right nutrients
What you eat plays a crucial role in the battle of beating stress. When you’re running on empty, it’s impossible to focus or be productive. So, ensure you’re eating healthy, balanced meals. And don’t forget to stay hydrated throughout the day.
A healthy diet will not only improve your mood, but also help you stay alert and focused. So, include enough lean protein and fruits in your diet. You must also cut back on sugary and processed foods.
Here we will also like to highlight some healthy snacking options for the times you need to replenish your energy levels.
- Almonds: Almonds are rich in magnesium, which is known for its stress-busting properties.
- Dark Chocolate: A small square of dark chocolate can help improve your mood and cognitive function.
- Yogurt: Yogurt is a good source of probiotics, which can help reduce stress and anxiety.
- Oatmeal: Oatmeal is rich in fiber and antioxidants, both of which are beneficial for your overall health.
Nurses are expected to stay rock-solid even in the most challenging situations. But that doesn’t mean you must carry the burden yourself. When the going gets tough, reach out to your friends, family, or colleagues for support. Talking about your problems will help you feel better and give you some much-needed perspective.
You can also join a study group or online forum for nursing students. It’s a great way to interact with peers and get different perspectives on various topics. These groups can also offer moral support when you struggle with work or studies.
Breathing exercises and meditation are other proven ways to combat stress. Taking some time out for yourself will help you relax and rejuvenate.
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